Credit unions are known for delivering great rates and dedicated service for their members—but sometimes credit unions go underappreciated for the positive impact they make on the communities where their members live and work.
The promise to support and strengthen our local communities is built into the credit union’s purpose, and it results in a better banking experience for people like you. Federal Credit Unions like First Tech are member-owned and member-controlled, without any shareholders to influence organizational decisions. Additionally, our Board of Directors serve on a volunteer basis. As a not-for-profit financial institution, we provide members with safe, secure financial services that are designed to help them thrive. This banking relationship makes it easier for members to align their banking with the values that are most important to them—and they can see these values reflected in the way their credit union interacts with the community.
Other financial institutions often fail to empower their community as much as credit unions do. Simply put, banks are beholden to shareholders and profit growth, while credit unions are only beholden to the financial well-being of the members they serve. The ability to put people over profit also frees credit unions to support more local businesses and offer more community-oriented services.
At First Tech, the results are clear and impactful.
First Tech’s Community Engagement programs include a variety of local and national support—and First Tech employees donate time, money, skills, technology and educational opportunities to support the next generation of leaders, thinkers and innovators. That includes partnerships with a number of organizations doing critical work for our local communities—like Adelante Mujeres
, Free Geek
, Doernbecher Children’s Hospital
, Food Lifeline
, Mary’s Place
and many more. First Tech has demonstrated commitment to organizations that work to benefit Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) causes, along with organizations that provide fundamental needs like local shelters, hunger relief groups and community health programs.
Another example of First Tech’s community impact came in the fall of 2021, when First Tech broke ground on a community garden plot
on our Hillsboro, Oregon corporate campus. A number of employees rolled up their sleeves and began planting the first seeds that would eventually become fresh produce for our neighbors in need. First Tech had already shared a partnership for several years with Centro Cultural de Washington County
, an organization building systems to improve the health and economic mobility of underserved communities in Washington County, Oregon, while also providing a home for Latino cultures
With the help of Centro Cultural’s Free Food Mercado program, First Tech was able to harvest our community garden produce in 2022 and share it directly with the people in our community who could use the food the most.
Our community garden is just one example of how credit unions can support local business and strengthen community connections. We encourage you to get to know the causes that are championed by your community’s credit unions, and consider supporting your community directly by opening an account with a credit union today!