Maps Helps Members Restock Groceries After Ice Storm
Mar 1, 2021
(SALEM, Ore., March 1, 2021) – The Maps Community Foundation distributed just over $40,000 to 813 Maps Credit Union members this past week who lost all their perishable food when the February ice storm left them without power for days.
“Waking up to the storm’s damage and personally experiencing an extended power outage, I knew that one area we could offer immediate assistance was to help our members restock their food supplies," said Foundation Executive Director, Kim Hanson.
The Foundation gave $50 in grocery relief funds to each impacted member who reported a need in the wake of the storm. About three-quarters of Maps’ 70,000 members live in Marion and Polk counties where ice-covered tree branches downed power lines and disrupted phone service during the Valentine’s weekend storm.
Many people experienced serious threats due to the extended power outages, surviving for days in chilly homes without heat or running water, and facing food insecurity. Coming on the heels of the wildfires and the ongoing pandemic, the event and its destruction hit the community especially hard.
Maps and its charitable giving arm, the Maps Community Foundation, quickly decided to reach out and offer support to members. Six days after the storm, a grocery card ice storm relief program was launched and promoted via online banking and social media. Members could apply online for a grocery gift card to help them restock their food supply when power returned.
“Seeing the devastation and ensuing prolonged power outages caused by the ice storm, we recognized that many of our members would need assistance. The efforts of the Maps Community Foundation to serve our members at this time of need is exactly why our Foundation exists,” said Mark Zook, CEO of Maps Credit Union.
In less than 24 hours, over 800 households applied for support, reflecting the widespread community impact. To ease the distribution of funds, Maps pivoted from giving grocery gift cards to depositing $50 directly into member accounts. The money landed in accounts last week.
Since then, hundreds of members have expressed their gratitude. “We are humbled, energized and impressed by this kind of offer,” said one member. Another said, “Thank you guys for such a kind and thoughtful gesture in these trying times.”
About Maps Community Foundation
Maps Community Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Maps Credit Union, a member-owned financial cooperative with 70,000 members and 9 branch locations in Salem, Keizer, Monmouth, Woodburn, Silverton, and Stayton. The mission of the Maps Community Foundation is to “enrich the lives of members and our community by investing in education, economic empowerment, and community vibrancy.” Programs include student scholarships, teacher and community grants, financial education, community volunteer awards, and nonprofit event sponsorship. The Foundation is funded through Maps Credit Union, which invests one penny each time a member swipes a Maps Free Community Checking debit card. In 2020, members generated more than $100,000 to be distributed locally through the Maps Community Foundation. Maps Credit Union adds to this amount generously each year and has funded additional crisis-response programs over the past 12 months related to the pandemic, wildfires, and now the ice storm.
Kim Hanson, Executive Director, Maps Community Foundation
office: 503-588-0181 x5752; cell: 503-881-4388; email: [email protected]