SPOKANE, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today BECU, Washington state’s largest credit union, celebrated the opening of its first Spokane-area Neighborhood Financial Centers by giving back to the community in partnership with Spokane Neighborhood Action Partners (SNAP).
BECU is partnering with SNAP to award $5,000 grants to three local businesses selected from the non-profit organization’s small business and entrepreneurship development program. Each winning business will also receive six hours of consulting with BECU executives in areas they have requested help with – from marketing to cybersecurity. These “SNAP Forward” grants build on BECU’s partnership with SNAP, which began in August with a $62,000 donation to save the non-profit’s financial counseling program.
“Offering these outstanding small businesses the help they need to expand and better serve the Spokane community is the type of financial empowerment that is most important to BECU,” said Steve Hauschild, BECU’s director of business lending and Eastern Washington market leader. “To us, this is more than an act of philanthropy. It’s a direct way to help our members and community thrive, and put our ‘People Helping People’ mission first.”
The three recipients of the SNAP Forward grants from BECU include:
A&J Transportation, which provides trucking and dispatch services to Spokane business and beyond to deliver refrigerated and dry goods throughout the lower 48 states. A&J is looking to expand its staff and plans to use the grant to hire a part-time dispatch trainee to accommodate additional drivers, and eventually grow that into a full-time position.
Kitchen Spokane, a non-profit commercial kitchen for use by start-up food entrepreneurs, helping them manage costs and grow their business. Kitchen Spokane plans to use the grant to help hire and train a new site manager, allowing leadership to focus on additional expansion.
Anvil Welding Instruction, a training school helping young adults and those in life transitions learn the welding trade – one of the top job growth occupations in the Northwest. Anvil plans to use the grant to purchase equipment to expand their training programs for welders entering light industrial and aerospace fields.
The three businesses participate in SNAP’s small business and entrepreneurship program. Applicants were nominated by SNAP's program team and judged on criteria that included their impact on the community, innovation and excellence in service.
“BECU has been an outstanding partner in creating these innovative SNAP Forward Grants and funding our community financial education programs,” said SNAP CEO Julie Honekamp. “Our missions complement each other, and we look forward to working closely with BECU to help Spokane residents become financially independent through investing in financial literacy and fostering innovation and entrepreneurship.”
With about 5,000 members currently in the Spokane area and an operations center in the Spokane Valley employing more than 100 people, BECU has been an active participant in the community for a decade.
BECU’s first two Spokane-area financial centers opened on September 19, with a third location planned in 2017. The two new branches are located at:
- Cataldo Square Shopping Center, 916 North Division Street
- 615 North Sullivan Road, Spokane Valley
BECU’s primary philanthropic causes are financial empowerment, member-inspired giving and employee-inspired giving. Last year BECU donated more than $3.5 million to philanthropic causes.
For more info, visit: www.becu.org.
BECU is a not-for-profit credit union owned by the members. Earnings are returned to the members in the form of better rates and fewer fees. With nearly 1 million members and more than $15 billion in assets, BECU is the largest credit union in Washington and one of the top four financial cooperatives in the country. BECU currently operates more than 40 locations in the Puget Sound region. All Washington state residents, Boeing employees and their families, and students attending Washington colleges and universities are eligible to join. For more information, visit www.becu.org.
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