Write to Dream Contest is Empowering Local Youth

St. Louis, MO – “It is difficult to dream when there is no food in the home, and illnesses or addictions run rampant in the family,” said VaNetta Clark, Aspire Academy teacher.

1st Financial Federal Credit Union, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), awarded their quarterly Community Grant to their member, Ms. Vanetta Clark to support her efforts to strengthen the community through education.

Ms. Clark, a teacher at Aspire Academy and a member at 1st Financial Federal Credit Union, not only impacts her student’s lives daily in the classroom, but she also facilitates the Write to Dream contest. This writing contest is a bi-annual contest that is open to all of the students at Aspire Academy.

Once the entries have been submitted, with the help of a panel, Ms. Clark picks 25 students and treats them to a dream day outing including lunch at exquisite restaurant and ride in a limousine. While they are out they talk to the students about their future dreams.

“As an educator, author, and visionary it is my desire to sow seeds of greater possibility within the minds of our youth. As a teacher, I am well acquainted with the adversity each student encounters on a daily basis. Unfortunately, the cycle is repeated in many cases,” said Ms. Clark.

“The Write to Dream contest is designed to teach youth how to dream beyond their immediate surrounding. In addition, the program is a call-to-action for those invested in the success of our youth and the individuals willing to look beyond the current state of our city into greater possibility and to recognize our ability to create the outcome we desire.”

1st Financial Federal Credit Union awarded Aspire Academy a Helping People 1st Grant in the amount of $500. This grant allows the school and Ms. Clark to continue to facilitate the Write to Dream contest.Processed with VSCO with a5 preset

“We love what Ms. Clark is doing in our community,” said Tracy Verner, Community Development Manager at 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. “She allows students to dream, to be creative, and to learn in her classroom and we are honored that Ms. Clark is also a 1st Financial member. Together, we are empowering kids to learn, to write and, above all else, to dream big.”

At 1st Financial Federal Credit Union, we believe education is one of the fundamental foundations to achieving financial freedom no matter how young you are. For more information about 1st Financial visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org.

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like all credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, financial cooperative. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. Today, with over 30,000 members and over $220 million in assets, 1st Financial is a St. Louis metro area financial institution dedicated to helping members achieve their financial dreams. For over 45 years 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of lower rates on loans and higher savings yields. The cooperative nature of credit unions enables 1st Financial to provide products and services at very reasonable rates.

 

1st Financial Federal Credit Union serves those who live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri and a wide array of companies throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area. 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial organization committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.


Paving the Path for Economic Independence with the Help of a Local Credit Union

Wentzville, MO 1st Financial Federal Credit Union, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), focused on serving the community with education, job training, and sustainable housing resources, partnered with Connections to Success in September to provide economic and training resources as part of 1st Financial’s Helping People 1st program.

Connections to Success, is a local organization which provides services and support to break the cycle of poverty. The organization serves people transitioning from poverty, incarceration, domestic violence, and other complex situations. The program’s main goal is to empower individuals through their transformation to economic independence by creating a program that meets the program participants where they currently are in life.

1st Financial Federal Credit Union was able to serve as a resource to Connections to Success by facilitating mock interviews for the participants. The Vice President of Human Resources, Hazelwood Branch Manager, Chief Lending Officer, and Community Development Manager walked through the interview process including how to dress and prepare for an interview, what questions to anticipate, and provided individual feedback to each of the participants during the mock interviews.

Connections to Success has been a recipient of 1st Financials Helping People 1st grant for the past three years. With the grant and funds provided by other fundraising efforts supported by both 1st Financial employees and members, 1st Financial was able to present a check for $759.25 to Connections to Success in September.

helping people 1st connections check

 

Pat Johnson, Wentzville Branch Manager, stated “Over the years, our partnership with Connections to Success has grown tremendously. We are able to help people who could quite possibly be our friends or our neighbors become financially independent.”

Lynda Keeton, the Event Coordinator for Connections to Success stated, “We are honored to be the recipient of the Helping People 1st Grant and truly appreciate the ongoing partnership with 1st Financial Federal Credit Union.” Ms. Keeton continued to state, “Together we are impacting our communities and changing lives.”

connections to succes shoppers image oneconnections to success shoppers image two

 

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like all credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, financial cooperative. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. Today, with over 30,000 members and nearly $200 million in assets, 1st Financial is a St. Louis metro area financial institution dedicated to helping members achieve their financial dreams. For over 45 years 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of lower rates on loans and higher savings yields. The cooperative nature of credit unions enables 1st Financial to provide products and services at very reasonable rates.

1st Financial Federal Credit Union serves those who live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri and a wide array of companies throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area. 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial organization committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? If you live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri, you can open an account today with 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Opens 2,800 College Savings Accounts for St. Louis Students

December 2nd, 2015 1st Financial Federal Credit Union announces a partnership with the City of St. Louis Treasury Office to create 2,800 accounts for their College Kids Savings Account Program which will be used to support college savings efforts for every kindergartner in the City of St. Louis.

The City of St. Louis has one of the largest underbanked populations in the nation. An estimated 14 percent of St. Louis City families have no accounts at traditional financial institution while the national average is 9.7 percent. Because they lack access to a banking account, these residents are more likely to fall prey to payday lenders and high-fee check-cashing businesses.

Once a resident starts using these services instead of traditional financial institutions, it is often very difficult to get out from under the loan due to uncapped fees and hidden penalties. The best way to ensure our children are protected from living loan to loan is by guaranteeing that our youth are financially literate and have a chance to get a college education. Unfortunately, many of the families who live in the City of St. Louis are not ready to assume the financial burden of saving for college and past mistakes leave them unable to open an account at a traditional financial institution.

The City of St. Louis Treasurer’s Office has developed an innovative program to help kick start the saving process and ease the burden for families. The College Kids Children’s Savings Account Program encourages college savings and promotes financial literacy for the City’s schoolchildren and families through children’s savings accounts, financial education, incentives, and dollar-for-dollar matches. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chosen by the City of St. Louis Treasurer’s Office to open over 2,800 accounts and provide ongoing financial support to help the students save for their college education. Additionally, 1st Financial will offer support for participant’s families in order to further serve the St. Louis area. The Treasurer’s Office kick started the program on December 1st with a $175,000.00 deposit.

“My office has made a commitment to invest in the future by providing college savings accounts for EVERY kindergartener in a public school throughout the City of St. Louis,” says Treasurer Tishaura O. Jones. “Our partnership with 1st Financial Federal Credit Union allows parents and family members to make deposits into the savings accounts at any shared branch location. Together, we are eliminating barriers to college access one savings account at a time!”

Having a college savings account, regardless of the balance, can be enough motivation to pursue a college education. Even children with low balances as low as $1 in a dedicated savings account are 2.5 times more likely to enroll in and graduate from college than students with no previous savings. The initial $50 seed deposit used to open the accounts is provided by the City of St. Louis Treasurer’s Office, coming from parking fees collected by the City of St. Louis. Students can then earn additional incentives including:

• Weekly Perfect Attendance: Students can earn $1/week during the school year for attending school and arriving on time for each day of school in session that week.

• Smart Saver: Deposits will receive a dollar-for-dollar match, up to $100 during the first year.

• Financial Education: Parents and guardians are able to earn an additional $50 in contributions by completing financial education courses in-person, online through Wells Fargo Hands on Banking® and through the College Kids smartphone app.

1st Financial will offer support for participant’s families in order to further serve the St. Louis area. The secondary goal of the program is to reduce the unbanked population of St. Louis by teaching the children and their families about the responsible use of money and how to avoid getting trapped in the cycle of payday loan businesses. The College Kids Program will ensure access to healthy banking services for underbanked and unbanked citizens, while developing a culture of savings and asset building.

For more information about the College Kids Program, please visit http://www.stlofe.org/collegekids

For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and the credit union difference, please visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org

2015-12-1 College Kids Press Conference (2)

Pictured from Left to Right: Carol Minges, Chief Executive Officer for 1st Financial Federal Credit Union; Tracy Verner, Community Development Manager for 1st Financial Federal Credit Union; Laura Woods, Vice President of Marketing and Community Presence for 1st Financial Federal Credit Union; and Tishaura Jones, City of St. Louis Treasurer.

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like many credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. For over 45 years, 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of reasonable rates on loans and higher savings yields.

Today, with over 30,000 members and $204 million in assets, 1st Financial is able to serve anyone who lives, works (regularly does business in), worships or attends school in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County or St. Charles County. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Honored Nationally For Community Service Programs

October 29, 2015– 1st Financial Federal Credit Union wins 1st place in Missouri for the Louise Herring Philosophy-in-Action Member Service Award and receives an honorable mention for the Dora Maxwell Responsibility Community Service Award, both of which recognize outstanding community development achievements in the credit union industry.

In September 2015, it was announced that 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was the recipient of two awards, given annually by the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). These awards were given in response to the extraordinary dedication of 1st Financial to the St. Louis and St. Charles communities through the STL Youth Jobs program and the Helping People 1st Grant program.

“I am so very proud of everyone’s efforts towards helping us make such a significant impact with both initiatives,” said Carol Minges, CEO of 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. “This is a testament to all of the work the team is doing to serve our community. Helping people is what we do and our employees are making a huge difference to the members we serve and to the St. Louis area. We would not have received the awards without our employee’s continued commitment to making a difference.”

The Louise Herring Philosophy-in-Action Member Service Award is given to a credit union for its practical application of credit union philosophy within the actual operation of the credit union. It is awarded for internal programs and services that benefit membership. 1st Financial was awarded a 1st Place recognition for the Louise Herring Philosophy-in-Action Member Service award due to the results of the STL Youth Jobs program, which has given access to over 1,100 free checking accounts to local at risk youth.  This program has also provided hundreds of hours of financial literacy for working young people in St. Louis city.  To date, these youth have saved over $40,000.

Louise Herring was an active supporter, organizer, and champion of credit unions. She was the Ohio delegate to the 1934 national credit union conference in Estes Park, CO where she signed the original constitution for a national credit union association.  Louise believed that credit unions should work in a practical manner to better people’s lives.  She saw the credit union as more than just a financial institution.  In her own words, “the purpose of the credit union is to reform the financial system, so that everyone can have his place in the sun.”

The Dora Maxwell Social Responsibility Community Service Award is given to a credit union or chapter/multiple credit union group for its external social responsibility projects within the community. 1st Financial was awarded an honorable mention for the Dora Maxell Social Responsibility Award due to the results of the Helping People 1st Grant program, which has provided over $20,000 and hundreds of paid volunteer hours to local nonprofits in our communities.

Dora Maxwell was an early credit union pioneer, and was one of the original signers of CUNA’s constitutions at Estes Park in Colorado. She worked as an organizer for the movement’s trade association and held numerous volunteer positions at the local and national level.  In addition to organizing hundreds of credit unions, she developed volunteer organizer clubs and worked with organizations on behalf of the poor.

For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and the credit union difference, please visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like many credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas.  For over 45 years, 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of reasonable rates on loans and higher savings yields.

Today, with over 30,000 members and $204 million in assets, 1st Financial is able to serve anyone who lives, works (regularly does business in), worships or attends school in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County or St. Charles County. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member?  Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Partners with KidSmart to Support St. Louis Students and Teachers

September 30th, 20151st Financial Federal Credit Union served KidSmart-Tools for Learning in August as part of the Helping People 1st Grant program by collecting schools supplies and raising donations.

1st Financial created the Helping People 1st Grant to support non-profit organizations who are focused on housing, financial literacy, job training, or education efforts in the St. Louis area. In August, the Hazelwood Branch continued this program by serving KidSmart- Tools for Learning.

KidSmart empowers kids in need to succeed in school by providing free, essential tools for learning and is the only free educational supply store in Missouri that invites certified classroom teachers to “shop” and individualize the needs for every child in their classroom. KidSmart has relationships with several national chain stores and is able to use monetary donations to purchase seven times more schools supplies for needy students. Since opening in 2002, KidSmart has distributed more than $27 million in school supplies to more than 102,100 economically disadvantaged children in the area.

“1st Financial Federal Credit Union enjoys supporting KidSmart because they are helping our youth receive the tools that are necessary for a positive educational experience,” said Tanya Forsythe, Hazelwood Branch Manager.   “We know that all donations we are able to collect will be a valuable resource to helping children in need be more confident in the classroom.”

The North County Branch of 1st Financial spent August promoting KidSmart to members within the branch and while also holding fundraising events. To raise donations, the branch held a bake sale, a plant sale, a gift card raffle, and a Cardinals ticket raffle sponsored by Liberty Mutual. Additionally, 1st Financial employees held a month long school supply drive where they collected 446 items. On Thursday, September 10th, Hazelwood Branch Manager Tanya Forsythe presented KidSmart with a check for $1712.72.

“KidSmart- Tools for Learning, is a not-for-profit that provides free school supplies to St. Louis children in need,” said Linda Kilwin, Programs Manager with KidSmart- Tools for Learning. “Last year, KidSmart collected nearly 500,000 individual school supplies for area children. As the demand for school supplies this year increases, this donation from 1st Financial Federal Credit Union will make a difference in the lives of many local children. This is a community issue and a community effort is needed to help each child succeed. Thank you for your generosity and for your continued support. ”

For more information about KidSmart- Tools for Learning, please visit http://www.kidsmartstl.org/.

For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and the credit union difference, please visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org.

Pictured from left to right: Tanya Forsythe, Branch Manager for 1st Financial Federal Credit Union; Linda Kilwin, Programs Manager with KidSmart- Tools for Learning; Matthew Deane, Lead Financial Service Representative for 1st Financial Federal Credit Union; and Pat Fennewald, Teller for 1st Financial Federal Credit Union.

kidsmart

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like many credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. For over 45 years, 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of reasonable rates on loans and higher savings yields.

Today, with over 30,000 members and $204 million in assets, 1st Financial is able to serve anyone who lives, works (regularly does business in), worships or attends school in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County or St. Charles County. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information. ###


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Launches Frugie, an Exclusive Mobile Rewards App

frugie pic

September 10th, 2015-1st Financial Federal Credit Union unveils Frugie, an exclusive mobile loyalty app that shares local discounts with 1st Financial members for their favorite stores, restaurants, and entertainment venues.

1st Financial is excited to announce the launch of its mobile discount app Frugie.  Made in partnership with Larky, a national leader in mobile app development, Frugie is a rewards program that provides 1st Financial members with discounts from over 55 local and national merchants

1st Financial members create a profile through the app to receive exclusive discounts based on their location and user preferences, which are sent directly to their mobile device as a notification. Frugie was created to save 1st Financial members money on everyday purchases while also supporting local businesses.

“Because we are credit union with a focus on helping our members make the most of every dollar, we are so excited to introduce a way for our loyal debit and credit card users to receive discounts at their favorite places,” said Carol Minges, Chief Executive Officer of 1st Financial Federal Credit Union.  “We’ve worked hard on this new app and we will keep working on it so that the benefit of being a 1st Financial member continues to grow.”

Exclusive discounts include offers from popular merchants throughout St. Louis and St. Charles county, such as Drunken Fish, Picasso’s, The Crooked Tree Coffee House, Country Club Car Wash, New Balance, and over 50 more local stores, restaurants and entertainment venues.

To start taking advantage of Frugie discounts, members must:

  • Visit Apple or Android app store and search for “Frugie”.
  • Create a user profile using an email address and a secure password.
  • Start searching for local discounts.1st Financial members and can download the Frugie mobile apps on iTunes- http://www.apple.com/itunes/ and in the Google Play Store- https://play.google.com/store. For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and the credit union difference, please visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org. 

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like many credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. For over 45 years, 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of reasonable rates on loans and higher savings yields.

Today, with over 30,000 members and $204 million in assets, 1st Financial is able to serve anyone who lives, works (regularly does business in), worships or attends school in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County or St. Charles County. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Excited To Be Latest St. Louis Area Credit Union To Offer Apple Pay

July 6th, 2015- 1st Financial Federal Credit Union is now offering Apple Pay, which is transforming mobile payments with an easy, secure and private way to pay.

1st Financial Federal Credit Union is excited to announce Apple Pay is now available for its members to use with their 1st Financial debit cards. Apple Pay is transforming how payments are made around the country, and will now offer 1st Financial Federal Credit Union members a new, secure way to make purchases.

Security and privacy is at the core of Apple Pay. When a user adds a debit card to Apple Pay, the actual card number is not stored on the device, nor on Apple servers. Instead, a unique Device Account Number is assigned, encrypted and securely stored in the Secure Element on the device. Each transaction is authorized with a one-time unique dynamic security code, instead of using the security code from the back of the card. Credit or debit card numbers are never shared by Apple with merchants or transmitted with payments.

“We are so pleased to offer this convenient service,” said Carol Minges, CEO of 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. “Apple Pay is a groundbreaking innovation that we are proud to share with our members.”

Apple Pay is easy to set up and users will continue to receive all of the rewards and benefits offered by their debit cards. In stores, Apple Pay works with iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch.

Online shopping within apps accepting Apple Pay is as simple as the touch of a finger with Touch ID, so there’s no need to manually fill out lengthy account forms or repeatedly type in shipping and billing information. When paying for goods and services within apps, Apple Pay is compatible with iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3.

In addition to supporting secure payment options such as Apple Pay, 1st Financial is also in the process of replacing every active debit card with more secure EMV-Chip cards. EMV cards work by creating an encrypted connection between the cardholder and financial institution. By adding these new payment options, 1st Financial is proactively working to protect its members’ financial information.

For more information on Apple Pay, visit http://www.apple.com/apple-pay/

For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and using Apple Pay with a 1st Financial debit card, visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org/apple-pay

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like all credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, financial cooperative. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. Today, with over 30,000 members and nearly $200 million in assets, 1st Financial is a St. Louis metro area financial institution dedicated to helping members achieve their financial dreams. For over 45 years 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of lower rates on loans and higher savings yields. The cooperative nature of credit unions enables 1st Financial to provide products and services at very reasonable rates.

1st Financial Federal Credit Union serves those who live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri and a wide array of companies throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area. 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial organization committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? If you live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri, you can open an account today with 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.

 


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Partners with STL Youth Jobs to Provide Financial Products and Education to Underserved Youth in St. Louis

May 29th, 2015- 1st Financial Federal Credit Union presents a $10,000 donation to STL Youth Jobs to hire a Financial Empowerment Specialist for the 2015 program.

On Friday, May 23rd, representatives from 1st Financial Federal Credit Union continued their partnership with STL Youth Jobs by participating in a Job Fair and presenting a $10,000 grant to help the program hire a Financial Empowerment Specialist. The Financial Empowerment Specialist will work with STL Youth Jobs participants during the summer to develop savings habits and help the youth work towards achieving their financial dreams.

“On behalf of everyone at 1st Financial Credit Union, we are proud to be a part of STL Youth Jobs, and we are happy to lend our expertise to the program’s success, said Carol Minges, Chief Executive Officer at 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. “1st Financial actively promotes financial empowerment. We want to see the youth we serve build healthy financial habits that will help them for the rest of their lives.”

She continued, saying “Helping our St. Louis young adults save their hard-earned money and to fully fund their goals are at the very core of our existence as a credit union. STL Youth Jobs is an outstanding program that will help us reach out to and engage the next generation.”

STL Youth Jobs was created to train St. Louis youth to be ready for the future workforce by providing financial literacy programs, job readiness training, and individualized career assessment. Formed in 2012 by a group of St. Louisans including the City of St. Louis Mayor’s office, the Greater St. Louis Community Foundation, MERS Goodwill, the Incarnate Word Foundation, and the St. Louis Youth Violence Prevention Taskforce, STL Youth Jobs provides employment opportunities for young people aged 16-24 while working to ensure future economic growth for the region.

Since 2014, 1st Financial has partnered with St. Louis Youth Employment Programs to offer financial literacy education and open 196 savings and checking accounts for program participants. These accounts have special limits built into them so that the youth do not experience fees when using their debit card. Additionally, these accounts are set up with automatic paycheck withdrawals which are transferred into a primary savings account to help form positive savings habits.

With an average savings allocation of $48 per paycheck and total savings of about $2,000 bi-weekly, these young adults were able to save a total of $24,000 over the course of the 2014 program. Since the start of 2015, 1st Financial has opened approximately 500 new accounts for youth, and estimates that this total will reach 2,500 by the end of the year.

IMG_3234

For more information on the STL Youth Jobs Program, please visit http://stlyouthjobs.org/

For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and the credit union difference, please visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like many credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. For over 45 years, 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of reasonable rates on loans and higher savings yields.

Today, with over 30,000 members and nearly $200 million in assets, 1st Financial is able to serve anyone who lives, works (regularly does business in*), worships or attends school in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County or St. Charles County. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.


1st Financial Federal Credit Union Awards Scholarships to St. Louis Area Students

May 21th, 2015- 1st Financial Federal Credit Union presented two $1000 college scholarships to St. Louis area students at the 2015 Annual Meeting on Tuesday, April 28th.

“One of the best parts of our annual meeting is to get the opportunity to announce the scholarship winners and hear them read their essays,” said Carol Minges, Chief Executive Officer at 1st Financial Federal Credit Union.  “It is interesting to hear about the important difference between credit unions and banks from that generation.  We are honored to be able to give them a small scholarship to get them started with their education.”

The 1st Financial Right Stuff Scholarship is awarded to an attending college student and 1st Financial member between the ages of 19 and 24. In addition to presenting a recent report card and showcasing their athletic and community involvement achievements, applicants were asked to write an essay on how a credit union can impact its community.

This year the Right Stuff Scholarship was awarded to Alexandria Stuart, a current Freshman studying Occupational Therapy at Maryville University. Alexandria plans to graduate in May of 2019.

Since 1996, 1st Financial has awarded the Horizon scholarship to a student with an extraordinary academic history and evidence of a strong presence in their community. This year the Horizon Scholarship was awarded to Stacey Doggett, a senior from Wentzville Holt High School. Stacey plans to attend Truman State University in the fall with an anticipated focus in Business Management.

“I am so thankful for everything 1st Financial Federal Credit Union does for me and the community,” said Stacey Doggett. “I am delighted to be able to extend my education for the next four years at Truman State University thanks to the Horizon Scholarship offered by my credit union.”

Horizon Scholarship applicants are asked to write an essay about the differences between credit unions and banks and discuss how that difference benefits the writer. In her essay, Stacey wrote:

“Credit Unions are different from banks because they are smaller, community owned, and typically more personable and easier to work with.  They care about their local community and the people who are work hard to make it a better place.  There is usually less red tape and they can do more things for their members because of this.  Also, since credit unions are usually non-profit, instead of taking money for themselves, they give the money back to their members in the form of lower interest rates on loans.  For example, after doing some quick research, 1st Financial Federal Credit Union’s current auto loan rate is 2.49%, significantly lower than the 2.99% of US Bank.  Credit Unions care about their members and offer low interest rates on loans and high interest rates on savings.”

IMG_3076

Pictured from Right to Left-Stacey Doggett, 2015 Horizon Scholarship Winner and Carol Minges, CEO of 1st Financial Federal Credit Union.

For more information about 1st Financial Federal Credit Union and the credit union difference, please visit www.1stfinancialfcu.org

About 1st Financial Federal Credit Union

Like all credit unions, 1st Financial is a member-owned, financial cooperative. 1st Financial Federal Credit Union was chartered on September 3, 1968 as District 837 Credit Union by the International Association of Machinist members employed by McDonnell Douglas. Today, with over 30,000 members and nearly $200 million in assets, 1st Financial is a St. Louis metro area financial institution dedicated to helping members achieve their financial dreams. For over 45 years 1st Financial has provided members with a full line of dependable financial products and services which returns profits to the members in the form of lower rates on loans and higher savings yields. The cooperative nature of credit unions enables 1st Financial to provide products and services at very reasonable rates.

1st Financial Federal Credit Union serves those who live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri and a wide array of companies throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area. 1st Financial is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial organization committed to providing quality services to the membership while demonstrating safe and sound business practices. Deposits are federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the U.S. Government.

Not a credit union member? If you live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Charles County, Missouri, you can open an account today with 1st Financial Federal Credit Union. Visit www.TheBetterWayToBank.org for more information.