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REAL Focus: expand outreach with grants, new programs


Financial education and outreach to new and underserved markets develop relationships that can grow your credit union. I'd like to share some of the many upcoming grants, programs and educational opportunities coming your way that can help you do just that. I'd encourage your credit union to consider:

Chad Helminak, League VP of Credit Union Development



  • Alerting your partner schools to new funding. $250,000 in Financial Literacy Grants is now available to enhance any number of creative efforts that schools are using to teach personal finance, perhaps with your credit union. The application deadline is March 21.
  • Applying for grants from the NCUA as part of its Technical Assistance Grant program. Low-income-designated credit unions can individually receive up to $16,500 in funding for a new Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) certification, new products and student internships. Most of the nation’s low-income credit unions are eligible for CDFI certification even though only 10% are currently certified.


  • Hosting a retirement fair for your SEG employees. Developed by the National Credit Union Foundation's (NCUF’s)   REAL Solutions Program in conjunction with CUNA Mutual Group, the fair engages workers in making lifestyle choices for their retirement years while assessing the cost of supporting those choices. The League is now making available to all Wisconsin credit unions the turnkey resources to offer a fair, including assistance from League staff to host one. Chapter leaders will be invited to participate in a fair at this year’s Chapter Leaders’ Conference in June. Contact me if you’d like more information.




  • Engaging student teams in upcoming Finance and Investment Challenge Bowls. Grades 9-12 from any city can participate. Regional tournaments are held in Madison, Racine/Kenosha, Milwaukee, Rhinelander, the Fox Cities, Wausau and The Menominee Reservation.




Wisconsin credit unions will be showing off the impact of REAL Solutions like these at the State Government Affairs Conference Feb. 12. Many thanks to credit unions that responded to our survey to help update our Scorecard, the advocacy piece that showcases credit unions' tremendous work in serving for members and communities.

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