American Heritage FCU Holds March Fundraisers for Busia
PHILADELPHIA (3/25/13) — American Heritage Federal Credit Union, a partner of the Busia Compassionate Center, has hosted several fundraisers this month to allow us to continue our building projects in Kenya. Late in February, they held a Krispy Kreme fundraiser. They have also kicked off the ULTIMATE Easter Basket raffle, which will run through the end of March. The prize is an Easter basket of epic proportions, standing over four feet tall. The enormous basket has been wildly popular with AHFCU employees and has generated many raffle entries. On Tuesday, March 19, organizers hosted a First Aid Drive for the orphanage, collecting items essential to the health and well-being of Busia's children.
Thanks to American Heritage FCU for all your support!
Here are some pictures from the fundraisers:
Kenya's Ambassador Lauds CUs For Promoting Economic Stability
WASHINGTON (3/7/13) — Kenya's ambassador to the U.S. recognized 60 U.S. credit union representatives last week for their work to improve Kenya's economic stability in a region hit hard by post-election violence in 2007.
With a new election on the horizon, Ambassador Elkanah Odembo expressed appreciation for the partnership between credit unions in Kenya and in the U.S., and for the difference they make in Kenyans' lives. Odembo made the comments during a reception at the Kenyan Embassy in Washington last week in Washington, D.C.
After ethnic clashes following the 2007 presidential election left more than 1,000 people dead, the World Council of Credit Unions (WOCCU) began providing assistance to Busia Compassionate Centre, a western Kenya orphanage, through support from the international credit union community.
WOCCU initially worked with the orphanage through a U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded program that extended local credit union financing to small farmers, families and caretakers affected by HIV/AIDS. That program ended in 2010, but WOCCU and credit unions globally continued to support the center.
Credit unions financed educational scholarships, taught caretakers and orphans how to grow crops and raise animals for better nutrition and an income source, and supported building a safer, more secure facility.
The orphanage's local volunteers and children have also established a credit union to serve the Busia community. Donations from the international credit union system helped subsidize start-up costs and provide tools and methods to establish the credit union. The credit union is one of Kenya's two digital credit unions, where members can access their accounts via cellphone.
"Through our work with Kenya's savings and credit cooperatives, we were able to provide a sense of hope and security for people deeply affected by the post-election violence," said Brian Branch, WOCCU president/CEO.
"From the seeds of this work sprouted our partnership with the Busia Compassionate Centre, which has grown into a promising foundation for economic stability and growth in western Kenya. Millions of Kenyans streamed to the polls on Monday to cast their votes for a new president, and we are hopeful that this election will mark an era of greater prosperity for the country."
The Global Women's Leadership Network, a World Council initiative, is organizing an engagement program to Kenya, May 25 to June 4, 2013, to help launch the Busia Compassionate Centre's credit union. Participants will learn about the Kenyan credit union system and life in rural Kenya as well as conduct credit union staff and board trainings. Use the link for more information.
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Mich. CU Trip Continues to Inspire
Michigan (3/4/13) — It's been several months since a group of Michigan credit union leaders went to Kenya to work in an orphanage as part of a World Council of Credit Unions program, but their trip continues to inspire others here at home.
Communicating Arts CU CEO Hank Hubbard, Public Service CU CEO Dean Trudeau, and MCUL League Representative Stephanie Klocinski traveled to the Busia Compassionate Centre in November for a service trip.
When 7-year-old Cole Treat, son of CUSG Director of Sprint Partnerships Lisa Treat, heard about the trip and learned that the children in Kenya lacked everyday items we take for granted, such as flip-flops, he set forth on a mission of his own to help. Instead of birthday presents, Cole asked his friends and family to donate flip-flops for the Kenyan children.
While in Washington for the CUNA GAC, Hubbard, Trudeau and the Treat family had the opportunity to visit the Kenya Embassy, meet with Kenyan officials and deliver the donated items.
"We are so grateful for your desire to help the people of our country," Kenya Ambassador Elkanah Odembo told the group.
The group of credit union leaders plans to continue its relationship with the orphanage and hopes to return there in the future.
To see the original online article, click here.