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CUs INatl JournalI to help kids hospitals at RNC DNC
WASHINGTON (3/16/12)--The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) and National Journal Group will team up to honor the Republican and Democratic National Conventions by restoring, refreshing and revitalizing therapeutic playgrounds at All Children's Hospital and Levine Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, Fla., and Charlotte, N.C., respectively.

CUNA, credit unions and the National Journal will work to make much-needed improvements to outdoor play areas at each of these hospitals in the months before this summer's national political conventions. The effort represents credit unions' tradition of honoring each national political convention city with a "leave-behind" project that will serve the local communities long after the conventions have left town.

At Levine Children's Hospital in Charlotte, the project will convert existing outdoor rooftop space on the hospital's 12th floor into a dynamic play space that will include a touch-activated light and color "bubble wall," outdoor play equipment, and much needed environmental improvements.  At All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, an existing playground will be retrofitted with special equipment designed to assist in the rehabilitation of children suffering from a variety of illnesses and accidents.

CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney said credit unions "are at their core about people helping people," and noted there could be no better way to help the communities in these two convention cities "than to give the children and their families at these hospitals a place to play and heal."

National Journal Group president Andy Sareyan said his organization is proud to take part in these projects.

The two projects will cost an estimated $600,000, and the cost of the renovations will be paid for with funds raised by credit unions nationwide. The Carolinas Credit Union Foundation, representing credit unions belonging to the North Carolina Credit Union League and the South Carolina Credit Union League, and the Southeastern Credit Union Foundation, and affiliate of the League of Southeastern Credit Unions, are spearheading the fundraising efforts for Levine Children's and All Children's respectively.  CUNA Mutual Group, an insurance and financial services provider for credit union members, is also providing support for the undertaking.

CUNA will officially kick off the projects and begin fundraising efforts at next week's Governmental Affairs Conference in Washington, D.C.

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