WESTBROOK, Maine (4/29/08)--The Maine credit union movement’s volunteer program--Credit Unions Share for ME--released the final results of volunteer efforts by Maine’s credit unions in 2007, in celebration of National Volunteer Week, which began Sunday and ends Saturday. The six-year-old, award-winning program documented a record-setting 23,004.5 hours volunteered by credit union staff and directors in 2007, an increase of 18% over the previous year, according to the Maine Credit Union League, which coordinates the program. The value of time volunteered by Maine’s credit unions equaled $350,000 in 2007, based on figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which calculates the value of one hour volunteered in Maine at $15.25. The amount of volunteers participating in the program also saw an increase of 13% from the previous year with 2,304 individuals from credit unions recording time spent volunteering in their communities. In 2007, the top five credit unions contributing the most volunteer hours were:
* Rainbow FCU, Lewiston, 2,517; * Saco Valley CU, Saco, 2,501; * Five County CU, Bath, 1,920.5; * Midcoast FCU, Bath, 1,698.5; and * Franklin-Somerset FCU, Skowhegan, 1,342.25.
The top five credit unions with the most volunteers were:
* Rainbow FCU, 215. * Five County CU, 191; * Saco Valley CU, 177; * Midcoast FCU, 172; * Ocean Communities FCC, Biddeford; and NorState FCU, Madawaska, 118;
Throughout the year, credit union representatives participated in a variety of community-service initiatives from delivering meals to seniors and donating blood, to youth athletics and serving as flag bearers at military funerals. In 2007, the program averaged 1,917.04 hours volunteered per month, with an average of 192 volunteers participating. The program tracks and updates the volunteer efforts of credit unions on a monthly basis. “By their very structure, credit unions are about volunteers, with each credit union governed by a volunteer unpaid board of directors,” said Jon Paradise, league governmental and public affairs manager. “Credit unions are not just about being located in the communities they serve, but truly being a part of them through involvement, for the simple reason of it being the right thing to do. “The program began during National Volunteer Week six years ago, so we announce the previous year’s figures at this time each year,” he added. “It highlights and recognizes the hundreds of individuals who volunteer and are involved with causes and activities in their communities throughout the year.