“If there was ever a time to document what credit unions are doing to improve their members’ and employees’ financial lives, it’s during this crisis,” notes Gigi Hyland, Foundation Executive Director. “This pandemic has put a glaring spotlight on how many of us are financially fragile. Our grants efforts this year focus on telling the story of how credit unions are meeting that challenge and testing a split deposit intervention with employees to see whether it moves the needle on financial well-being.”
The Foundation’s 2020 Grant cycle has two opportunities for credit unions:
- “Start at Home”: A strategy that focuses on financial well-being always starts at home with employees. Employees can be equally financially fragile as the members they serve. This grant effort seeks to increase credit union employee financial well-being through one discreet savings initiative: Building short term savings through split deposit. “Splitting” a direct deposit is the ability to automatically direct a fixed percentage or dollar amount of pay into a savings or investment account. The overarching goal of this grant effort is to have impact — specifically to rigorously test this evidence-based intervention that has strong potential to build financial resilience among credit union employees and to be scaled within and across credit unions. This effort will be a collaboration with select researchers from around the country to help selected credit unions test split deposits with employees. Click here to see the full application for “Start at Home”.
- “Tell Your Story”: A great deal of work has been done in the credit union system around financial well-being and now is the time to tell the story of the journey to date. The Foundation is seeking credit unions who have financial well-being as a key component of their strategy to share their impact stories. Specifically, credit unions will be asked to document: the financial well-being challenge faced by members and/or the community; the intervention (e.g., product, service, counseling, relationship, etc.) the credit union took to address the challenge and improve financial health and well-being; and the transformation the credit union measured as a result of its work (e.g., 500 members improved their credit score from X to Y; $X in debt was reduced because of the intervention, etc.). Click here to see the full application for “Tell Your Story”.
These opportunities are only available to credit unions. The deadline for credit unions to submit their applications is July 29, 2020. The Foundation will review all applications for each credit union’s financial capacity and commitment to improving members’ and employees’ financial well-being that directly support the stated application objectives.