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CO-OP Financial Services, Yoobi Offer Spring Backpack Bundle Drive
Wednesday, February 14, 2018 6:40 AM

Program Returns after Helping 1,300 Students Last Fall

Following a fall 2017 campaign that provided school supplies to 1,300 students, CO-OP Financial Services is partnering again with Yoobi on a Spring Backpack Bundle Drive designed to help credit unions support schools and students in their communities.

“Consumers are looking for both social mission and innovation from their financial institutions,” said Samantha Paxson, chief marketing and experience officer for CO-OP. “The Spring Backpack Bundle Drive enables credit unions to not only positively impact their local communities, but their contribution will be matched on the national level as well. And now is the best time to participate: the Spring semester is when supplies and school budgets are running the lowest, and teachers are the most likely to fill the gaps.”

For every $1,500 a credit union invests in the program, the cooperative receives 50 backpacks and school supplies for students in need. Also included in the shipment will be material directing students and parents to financial literacy resources and a financial literacy kit for the recipient organization. Credit unions can then engage in staff teambuilding with a stuffing party for employees to assemble the backpacks with pencils, rulers, crayons, and other essential supplies.

It is the credit union’s decision where to donate the backpacks, such as a local school, homeless shelters, organizations for foster kids, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America. Yoobi will donate an equal number of backpacks and supplies to the Kids in Need Foundation, which will distribute the items nationally.

Any credit union can participate, regardless of affiliation with CO-OP, and online sign-up is open now through March 31. Backpack orders will begin to be shipped to participating credit unions in late February.

For many students, school supplies are a luxury their families cannot afford. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, these supplies cost the average U.S. parent $114 per child each year. As a result, 91 percent of U.S. teachers purchase supplies for their classrooms with their own money. The Kids in Need Foundation reported that in 2015 teachers spent an average of $578 to help their students with supplies.

“Our leadership team gravitated to this opportunity almost immediately for the teambuilding aspect, in addition to the community assistance opportunity,” said Greg Strizich, president/CEO of Helena Community Credit Union in Montana, and a participating institution of the fall 2017 program. “I am very pleased to have CO-OP as a partner in supporting our mission as a credit union."

“We delivered the backpacks to the school and had a blast,” said Erica Waetjen Beach, vice president, marketing, of Eagle Community Credit Union in Lake Forest, California, and another fall 2017 participant. “What a great idea and partnership.”

The Spring Backpack Bundle Drive is part of CO-OP Purpose, a corporate social responsibility program for credit unions that provides impactful turnkey community initiatives to help credit unions advance their mission of people helping people. Under the CO-OP Purpose umbrella, CO-OP also offers CO-OP Miracle Match, a $1 million-annually philanthropic matching program that encourages credit unions to hold fundraisers for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. 

For more information and to register for the drive, visit CO-OP’s backpack initiative webpage.

About Yoobi
Founded in 2014, Yoobi is a school, home, and office supplies company committed to solving school supply shortages nationwide. Yoobi believes that school supplies should be available to every child in every classroom, and teachers should not have to spend their hard-earned money to make that happen. Since its launch, Yoobi has provided free school supply sets to more than three million students in three years. For more information, visit yoobi.com.

About CO-OP Financial Services
CO-OP Financial Services is a payments and financial technology company whose mission is ensuring the success of the credit union movement. CO-OP payments solutions, engagement services, and strategic counsel help credit unions optimize member experiences to consistently provide seamless, personalized multi-channel offerings, while delivering secure, sophisticated fraud mitigation service. For more information, visit co-opfs.org.

CO-OP Financial Services is a five-star endorsed business partner of Credit Union Resources, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of the Cornerstone Credit Union League.