In times like these, it’s important to highlight positive stories. To that end, we’d like to shine a brighter light on financial institutions that are going a step further, above and beyond the rest. For example:
purchased an abundance of N-95 face masks back in 2009 when we feared that the H1N1 “Bird Flu” would turn into a pandemic. When it didn’t, those masks went into storage and were largely forgotten.
Fast-forward to March 2020 when we find ourselves hosting a far more sinister predator: COVID-19.
After assessing the stock of N-95 masks in storage, OneAZ Credit Union knew it had enough for its associates for both current and projected needs. It also checked with the manufacturer, 3M, to ensure the masks had been properly stored and did not expire. Then, it turned its attention to the needs of the local medical community.
As a result, 40,000 N-95 masks were generously delivered to Banner Desert Medical Center to help protect those on the front lines.
That’s not all OneAZ Credit Union is doing. It has also pledged $200,000 in emergency grants to community nonprofits impacted by COVID-19. Applications should be submitted online and, while five key areas of nonprofit will take priority, all nonprofits in the area may apply. Grants will be awarded in $2,000 increments until either the $200,000 has been exhausted OR, May 1st, whichever comes first.
The five areas of priority are:
- children’s health;
- food banks;
- financial literacy;
- military, veterans’ and first responders’ interests; and
- local youth programs.
In the last four years, OneAZ Credit Union has already granted nearly $400,000 in grants to community initiatives, and even prior recipients may apply for these special COVID-19 grants.
For full detail and to submit an applications, visit:
These are the kinds of stories we want to share. And we know there are plenty.
If you work at, or know of, a community bank or credit union that is going above and beyond in its neighborhoods, we’d like to hear from you. Please submit your suggestions to email@example.com with Above and Beyond in the subject line. We will take all submissions under consideration.
On another note, as essential services, banks and credit unions must maintain sufficient operating hours to meet the needs of their clientele. They must also be mindful to keep everyone safe. To accommodate both goals, most banks and credit unions have changed the way they operate. For example, it is common to find extended drive-through hours, but if you need to access a safe deposit box or visit a branch, you will likely have to schedule an appointment.
Do: call your financial institution to see if your needs can be handled over the phone or via an online portal.
Don’t: fall for scammers! They are out in full force taking aim at you by phone and online. If you did not initiate the call, do not provide any of your personal information.
Many banks and credit unions are also offering special, COVID-19 accommodations for borrowers who have been furloughed or laid-off. If you are having trouble meeting your expenses, contact your financial institution. We think you’ll find that most will be willing to work with you in the coming weeks and months.
Likewise, if you need money to carry you through, contact your financial institution. Between government programs and the programs being set-up by individual institutions, you will have much better and more affordable options at a federally-insured institution than going elsewhere.
Our nation’s federally-insured banks and credit unions are taking extraordinary steps to keep everyone under their collective umbrellas safe, both physically and financially.