NWCUA, The Federation Announce Partnership to Promote Financial Inclusion and Asset Building Opportunities for the Hispanic and Non-citizen Communities in the Northwest
August 22, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Seatac, WA — The Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) is pleased to announce a formal partnership with the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions (The Federation), to promote the Juntos Avanzamos program among credit unions in the Northwest and expand access to credit union services to the Hispanic community throughout the region.
The Juntos Avanzamos designation identifies financial cooperatives committed to providing affordable and responsible financial products and services that provide asset-building opportunities for Hispanic and immigrant consumers.
Juntos Avanzamos was developed by the Texas Credit Union League as a Hispanic outreach program for credit unions. On September 22, 2015, The Federation announced the national expansion of the program in partnership with the Cornerstone Credit Union League and a growing number of state leagues and associations across the country, including the Credit Union Association of New Mexico, the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues, the Iowa Credit Union League, the Mountain West Credit Union Association, and now, the Northwest Credit Union Association, along with Coopera and the Network of Latino Credit Unions and Professionals. Fifty credit unions in 12 states—AZ, CA, CO, FL, IA, IL, NJ, NM, OK, OR, TX, and WA—and the District of Columbia have earned the designation.
“We are excited and proud that Point West Credit Union has earned the Juntos Avanzamos designation,” said Troy Stang, NWCUA President & CEO. “It’s a testament to their service to all communities—and particularly the noncitizen community. The Portland region is among the fastest growing in the country, and 15% of that population is coming from outside the United States. Finding ways to help those communities build financial strength is at the heart of the Credit Union Difference.”
“Juntos Avanzamos is a tremendous honor,” added Amy Nelson, Point West President & CEO. “It is a reflection of our vision and commitment to serve the Hispanic community in providing financial services and asset-building opportunities in conjunction with our amazing community partnerships.”
Sunnyside, Washington based Lower Valley Credit Union became the first Northwest credit union to earn the designation last January. Point West will become the second—and first in Oregon—at a Juntos Avanzamos celebration ceremony Wednesday evening, August 17.
Speakers at the Celebration are to include:
- Amy Nelson, President & CEO, Point West Credit Union;
- Troy Stang, President & CEO, Northwest Credit Union Association;
- Pablo DeFilippi, Vice President of Membership and Business Development, The Federation;
- Alejandra Seluja, CU Breakthrough Consultant, The Federation;
- Juan Carlos Gonzalez, Development Director, Centro Cultural of Washington County; and
- Rep. Tobias Read, D-Oregon.
“It is an honor to welcome Point West to this program,” noted Pablo DeFilippi, The Federation Vice President of Membership and Business Development. “This credit union is truly committed to financial inclusion and to opening the doors of opportunity to a community that so desperately needs access to affordable and equitable financial services. We congratulate Amy Nelson and her team on being the first credit union in Oregon to obtain the Juntos Avanzamos certification, and look forward to working with Troy Stang and the NWCUA to bring credit union services to the Hispanic community, a market that is without a doubt connected to the future and relevance of our industry.”
The Juntos Avanzamos designation is contingent upon a credit union’s commitment and ability to serve Hispanics regardless of their immigration status. The program also seeks to standardize operational processes and procedures to ensure a more consistent experience for community members. Qualifications include bilingual member-facing employees, partnerships with Hispanic community organizations, financial education, and competitively priced products and services for Spanish speakers.
The Northwest Credit Union Association is the not-for-profit trade association representing over 157 of Oregon and Washington’s credit unions. Northwest credit unions returned $352 million in direct financial benefits to their 5.2 million members last year. The NWCUA is the voice of the Northwest credit union movement, providing legislative, regulatory and public advocacy in addition to education, compliance, networking support and business solutions to credit unions. For information on how to join a credit union, please visit http://www.asmarterchoice.org.
The National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions (The Federation) is a dynamic, growth-oriented association of credit unions that provide safe and responsible financial services to underserved communities. Since 1974, The Federation has been promoting financial inclusion by organizing, supporting, and investing in these community development credit unions (CDCUs), which specialize in serving populations with limited access to affordable financial services, including low-income wage earners, recent immigrants, and people with disabilities.
Point West Credit Union is 100% not-for-profit, member-owned awesomeness headquartered in Portland, Oregon. With a bilingual staff ready to help its members achieve financial wellness, Point West works with its community partners to bring economic empowerment to the underserved, and needed capital to local microenterprise businesses—all with an unwavering commitment to its members and its cooperative roots. Find out more and join Point West today at https://www.pointwestcu.com.
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