WESTBROOK, Maine (4/29/13)--Maine's credit unions volunteered a record-setting 41,536 hours in 2012--a 19% increase over 2011.
The figures were released in celebration of National Volunteer Week last week.
The Maine Credit Union League coordinates statewide tracking of volunteer time contributed by credit unions through its nationally recognized Credit Unions Share for ME program.
"By their nature and structure, credit unions are about cooperating and helping others, whether it's members or the community," said John Murphy, league president. "From local staff to a volunteer unpaid board of directors, Maine credit unions give back to their communities on a daily basis--not because they have to, but because it is the right thing to do."
Based on figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which calculates the value of one hour volunteered in Maine at $17.03, the value of the time volunteered by Maine's credit unions equaled $707,358 in 2012.
The league's 11-year-old program has received several awards and recognition for quantifying the community service efforts of the state's credit unions. Since 2002, the program has documented more than 260,000 volunteer hours by credit union staff and directors.
More than 2,000 individuals, including staff and board members, volunteered in their communities last year, the league said. An average of 374 credit union staff and directors collectively volunteered an average of 3,461 hours each month in 2012.
One of the new aspects of credit union volunteer efforts this year was to encourage younger members to volunteer. The league's Young and Free Maine program for the 18- to 25-year-old demographic began spotlighting volunteer and community-related activities of young adults living and working in Maine each month on its Young and Free Maine website.