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Northwest Area Foundation Awards $165,000 to Iowa Credit Union Foundation  — 

Contact: Emily Oliver
Director of Public Affairs & Marketing

Northwest Area Foundation Awards $165,000 to Iowa Credit Union Foundation
Grants aimed at helping low-income people build assets

Des Moines, Iowa—The Northwest Area Foundation (NWAF) has awarded the Iowa Credit Union Foundation (ICUF) a $165,000 grant for its Credit Union Family Partnership Individual Development Accounts (IDA) Program.

ICUF will use this award to expand its IDA program and increase the number of Iowa credit unions offering financial education and savings accounts for families with low incomes, including credit unions that serve Latino communities.

IDAs are matched savings accounts where the savings of a participant is matched by a grant from another organization. The savings and matching funds are used by the individual to purchase a specific asset, such as a home, starting or expanding a small business, paying for education or job training, or purchasing a vehicle to get to work. Participants must meet income guidelines to qualify for an IDA account and must participate in financial education seminars.

“The recent recession has hit communities hard all across the Northwest area, but its impact has been especially harsh for those who were already struggling to make ends meet,” said Kevin Walker, President and CEO of NWAF. “This set of grants is designed to support vital asset-building work in urban and rural places, and to leverage support from other sources. Even in these tough times, I believe we can have an impact if funders are willing to combine resources behind organizations with track records of success or emerging initiatives with real promise.”

A total of $665,000 was awarded by NWAF to six organizations that have demonstrated their ability to leverage investments made in their work. Attracting such outside investments increases opportunities for impact as the grantees work to create jobs, encourage savings and increase access to credit: key to moving families from poverty to prosperity.

“We are so thankful to be one of the six recipients to receive a Northwest Area Foundation grant,” said Marybeth Foster, Executive Director, ICUF. “This grant will help us to extend our outreach efforts to low-income Iowans through our IDA program and ultimately help them acquire long-term financial stability.”

About Northwest Area Foundation
The Northwest Area Foundation is dedicated to supporting efforts by the people, organizations and communities in Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Oregon and Washington to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable prosperity. These states were served by the Great Northern Railway, founded by James J. Hill. In 1934, Hill’s son Louis W. Hill established the Foundation.

About Iowa Credit Union Foundation
Founded in 1995 as the philanthropic arm of the Iowa Credit Union League, the Iowa Credit Union Foundation's primary focus is to eliminate poverty in the state of Iowa. ICUF seeks to carry out its mission to help Iowans build wealth, responsibility and independence through its various programs, grants and scholarships. For more information, visit the Community Outreach section of IowaCreditUnions.com.



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