Credit Unions Help Local Nonprofit Clear 2,200 Pounds of Litter in Portland

Most days you’d see them in their branches helping members manage their finances, or behind their desks guiding important decisions about products and services being offered to more than two million Oregonians who’ve chosen credit unions as their preferred financial services partners.

But on Sept. 15, a coalition of credit union employees — from branch managers and community outreach experts to CEOs — fanned out across downtown Portland to help clean up a city that’s been challenged by the impacts of the pandemic, the economy, and social unrest. They collaborated with SOLVE, a nonprofit organization focused on a mission to improve the environment by working through a network of volunteers and community partners.

The occasion was SOLVE’s one-year anniversary of its “Downtown Portland Cleanup Day” initiative. The hundreds of volunteers who helped last week picked up more than 2,200 pounds of litter on that day alone and helped the nonprofit reach a milestone of more than 50,000 pounds of litter removal from downtown in the past year. Another business organization and many individual volunteers also took part in the cleanup day.

“It’s important for the community to come together because we all deserve a great place to live,” said a volunteer from Central Willamette Credit Union. “The more we can contribute back to our communities, including Portland, it just makes a better day for everyone and helps those who roam the streets feel more safe and secure. It helps those of us who enjoy the parks and downtown feel like we have a beautified city.”

A team from OnPoint Community Credit Union working to clean up the waterfront area, said their credit union is all about giving back.

“Anything we can do to do our part is important,” a volunteer noted. It’s been a rough couple of years for a lot of people and I love being part of the solution and giving back to the community.”.

Credit unions providing volunteer and financial support for the cleanup included Advantis, Central Willamette, Consolidated Community, Forrit, iQ, OnPoint Community, Rivermark Community, and Unitus Community.

Want to help? Volunteer anytime.

The work the credit unions did with SOLVE embodies their People Helping People mission and is an example of how credit union employees looking for volunteer opportunities can help.

SOLVE hosts cleanup events year-round in various Oregon communities. SOLVE selects areas that allow volunteers to practice health and safety protocols, including social distancing. Training is provided, along with all the supplies volunteers need to get the job done, such as heavy-duty garbage bags, gloves, and helpful tools. More information about opportunities to volunteer with SOLVE can be found here.

Posted in Around the NW, CU Difference.