Giving back to the community is a way of life for credit unions. During this year’s Southeast CUNA Management School, students took a break from the academic rigors of the program to put credit unions’ “people helping people” philosophy into action, as forty-three individuals from the Class of 2018 volunteered at the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia (FBNEGA) in Athens, Georgia.
FBNEGA recovers donated and salvaged surplus food and, with the help of volunteers, distributes it to human-service agencies that then distribute the food to residents in need in the community. Students gathered on Tuesday morning and packed nearly 1,000 meals that will be provided to food-insecure families and individuals in northeast Georgia. In addition to giving of their time, the Class of 2018 also made a financial donation of $1,000 to the food bank, which will help further the mission of the food bank as they work toward ending hunger as part of an overall community effort to alleviate poverty.
“Concern for community is the 7th cooperative principle – these principles are the foundation for why we do what we do as credit unions,” explained Michael Poucher, President of the Class of 2018 and Financial Center Manager at First Commerce Credit Union in Florida. “This is one of the many things we learn at SRCUS. Each year we come to Athens, Georgia to embark on our journey to improve ourselves as leaders within our organizations as well as the credit union movement. While we spend our time here, the community of Athens – the “people” – welcome us with open arms, so when given the opportunity to engage in the community that has been so good to us, we jumped on board. Why? Enhancing peoples’ quality of life is what we do.”
The Southeast CUNA Management School is administered by the Southeast Regional Credit Union Schools (SRCUS). Students in the Class of 2018 serve credit unions in ten states among the southeast region, including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.