SAGINAW, Mich. (7/10/13)--Credit unions in Saginaw, Mich., have teamed up for Impact Saginaw, a collaborative effort on special projects to enrich lives of people in the community.
| Sixteen credit unions announced Impact Saginaw last week at the Saginaw Children's Zoo. From left are: Nancy Parker of the zoo, Alan Watson of Catholic FCU, Linda McGee of Wildfire CU, Mike Murphy of Tri To Finish, Bridget Looby, Catholic FCU; Tina Dowe of YMCA Saginaw and Dana Tell of Team One CU.
Leaders from all 16 credit unions with offices in Saginaw announced that Impact Saginaw's first activity will be a Triathlon for Kids on July 27, followed by sponsorship of a CU at the Zoo day on Aug. 17 in which families will have a free day at Saginaw's Children's Zoo, according to the Michigan Credit Union League (Michigan Monitor July 8).
"We tend to hear more about what's wrong with Saginaw instead of what's right," said Gerald Hutto, president/CEO of Team One CU and chairman of the Impact Saginaw Committee. He came up with the idea that began with a committee of credit unions meeting to talk about ways they could work together to benefit the community. "Because all of the credit unions involved have a strong commitment to this community, we felt it was the right time and place to bring us all together to make a difference."
| Local television, radio and newspaper reporters interview Linda McGee, vice president of membership development for Wildfire CU and spokeswoman for Impact Saginaw, a collaborative effort of credit unions to enrich lives in Saginaw, Mich. (Photos provided by the Michigan Credit Union League)
Linda McGee, vice president of membership development at Wildfire CU, welcomed credit union representatives and local dignitaries who gathered at the zoo last week for the announcement. Credit unions recognized they could do more together than individually, she said, adding, "We know this community has been through some tough times and in some cases, continues to go through some tough times."
While the first two projects are event-oriented, the group may look to more concrete projects of need for its future efforts.
The triathlon will be coordinated through the Saginaw YMCA and race management company Tri to Finish. Credit unions will sponsor the event, giving 300 young people the opportunity to participate for free. The August event coincides with the zoo's back-to-school event. Impact Saginaw will provide free admission to the zoo, plus free-ride tickets to the first 500 children who attend.
Impact Saginaw demonstrates the credit union difference, said Hutto. "The credit union community is different than many competing institutions. We each operate our credit unions to provide our members with the best in financial services, but we are also interested in making our communities a better place to live, work and play."
Team members include: Wildfire CU, Team One CU, Catholic FCU, Wanigas CU, Security CU, Frankenmuth CU, United Financial CU, Saginaw Medical FCU, Family First CU, Generations Family CU, Valley State Employees CU,COPOCO Community CU, Saginaw County Employees CU, First Area CU, Amalgamated CU and Lake Huron CU.
Raising public awareness about credit unions is one of the three tenets underlying the Credit Union National Association's and state leagues' Unite for Good rally to bring to reality a strategic vision in which "Americans choose credit unions as their best financial partner." For more on Unite for Good, use the link.