Apply for Innovation Grants by June 30

Credit unions and their partners are eligible to apply for new “Innovation Grants” from the National Credit Union Foundation through June 30.

Innovation Grants are aligned with NCUF’s signature program, REAL Solutions™. While participation in REAL Solutions™ is not required to apply, NCUF is seeking grant applications for innovative projects in any of REAL Solutions’ five service areas:

Education Grants

Innovation Grants can assist credit unions participating in national financial education programs including the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE), Junior Achievement, or Biz Kid$ (the new national TV series airing on PBS sponsored by America’s Credit Unions). Innovation Grants can also support other initiatives consistent with the education components of REAL Solutions™: financial counseling, product awareness, and staff training.

Transaction Services Grants

Innovation Grants can support credit unions with programs to provide check-cashing, money orders, remittances, fee-free checking, tax preparation, and other transacation services to attract underserved consumers.

Savings Grants

Innovation Grants can support credit unions with programs that promote savings awareness, offer low membership fees, provide safe accounts for new immigrants, and help members with low wealth establish long-term savings.

Credit Grants

Innovation Grants can support credit unions offering small loans including payday loan alternatives, used car loans that help low-wealth members reach better jobs or higher education, and internal projects such as revising loan policies and building staff awareness in order to better serve people of modest means.

Homeownership Grants

Innovation Grants can support credit unions offering Home Loan Payment Relief (HLPR) mortgages, homeownership counseling, and other services that help members with lower credit scores become first-time homebuyers.

And although credit unions were by no means the cause of the sub-prime mortgage crisis, Innovation Grants can support credit unions’ efforts as part of the solution. For example, grants could help fund foreclosure prevention and affordable refinancing of sub-prime mortgages.

Investments Needed to Deepen the Grant Pool

The amount of grant money available will depend on how much credit unions invest in the Community Investment Fund (CIF).

Credit unions interested in investing can contact NCUF or their corporate credit union.
Click to see how the CIF gives back to the credit union community....
Click to see how the CIF gives back to the credit union community....