Funding Supports Community Service, Training, Product Development Programs
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Aug. 15, 2012)—More than 100 small credit unions across the country will improve service, provide training, and expand community outreach with the help of $1.4 million in technical assistance grants from the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).
“NCUA works hard to support America’s small credit unions, and these grants are one way of giving them the essential tools they need to do their work,” said NCUA Board Chairman Debbie Matz. “These credit unions are an important part of their communities and their local economies. This money goes to work to improve the lives of the members and reinforce our community service mission.”
“We made a concerted effort this year to make it easier to apply for these grants, and we saw a 77 percent increase in applications,” said William Myers, Director of NCUA’s Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives (OSCUI). “That shows the depth of commitment these credit unions have to their members and communities.”
This year NCUA received 331 grant applications with more than $5 million in funding requests, the highest total funding request in the program’s history. For 2012, NCUA received nearly $1.25 million in appropriated grant funds from Congress. Combined with remaining 2011 funds, approximately $1.4 million was available for these grants.
Examples of how the credit unions propose to use the grants include:
Marketing for in-school branches.
Internships for students to implement marketing plan to target a specific market.
Marketing and advertising for implementation of payday loan alternatives.
Consulting, marketing materials, and hardware and software to start or improve the operations of Volunteer Income Tax Assistance sites.
ATMs for underserved areas.
Consulting and/or training for Community Development Financial Institutions grant writing for new products and services.
Training for credit union staff and board members to improve a specific area of operation.
For a list of grantees, go to http://www.ncua.gov/Resources/CUs/Dev/Pages/Loans.aspx
NCUA awarded grants under the following initiatives, in the amounts shown for each:
New Product/Service Development—$1,028,029
Volunteer Income Tax Assistance—$119,069
Student and Job Creation Internships—$104,598
Staff, Official, and Board Member Training—$71,480
Financial Literacy and Education in School Branches—$43,824
The 2012 Community Development Revolving Loan Fund grant round is now closed, except for requests for emergency assistance, which NCUA accepts year-round, subject to funds availability.
OSCUI, which administers NCUA’s grant program, implemented a number of program changes this year, which account for the high volume of applications. OSCUI launched a new, automated grant system that allows credit unions to apply for multiple initiatives through a single application. The automated system also reimburses credit unions more efficiently.
Credit unions that did not receive funding this year will receive notice by September 1, 2012. These credit unions should consider applying next year. NCUA will announce the 2013 funding round on www.ncua.gov
and in FOCUS, OSCUI’s monthly e-newsletter featuring articles, announcements, and advice for small, low-income, and new credit unions.
NCUA is the independent federal agency created by
the U.S. Congress to regulate, charter and supervise
federal credit unions. With the backing of the full
faith and credit of the United States, NCUA operates
and manages the National Credit Union Share
Insurance Fund, insuring the deposits of more than
98 million account holders in all federal credit
unions and the overwhelming majority of
state-chartered credit unions. At
Pocket Cents, NCUA also educates the public on consumer protection and financial literacy issues.