Carolinas Foundation issues Phase III grant funds as post-Florence recovery continues
Thursday, May 9, 2019
Posted by: Courtney Jackson
Hurricane Florence was 350 miles wide when it struck North Carolina on September 14, 2018. In its wake, the massive and violent storm left 50 dead in the Carolinas, damaged hundreds of thousands of homes and killed livestock by the millions. Many are still on the path to recovery with once flooded homes still vacant and businesses still in repair.
Contributing to slower rebuilding efforts was the lack of flood insurance. Just 35 percent of at-risk properties in North Carolina had flood insurance in place compared to 65 percent of at-risk properties in South Carolina.
Following Hurricane Florence, the Carolinas Credit Union League and Carolinas Credit Union Foundation were swift in their communications to credit unions to assess damages and the need for relief aid.
“We learned quickly that flooding was the biggest threat to our credit union employees in the Carolinas,” noted Lauren Whaley, Foundation president. “We knew that our quick impact grants were needed to help folks get back on their feet quickly to serve members. Fortunately, branch operations had minimal downtime.”
The Carolinas Foundation divided its relief efforts in three phases, reassessing employee needs at each turn and donations needed in its Disaster Fund as well as the CUaid fund managed by the National Credit Union Foundation. Phase I grants were up to $500 and distributed in the first few weeks and the call for Phase II grants was announced 30 days following Florence.
Credit union employees from Alliance CU, First Carolina People’s CU, Fort Bragg FCU, Marine FCU, Self-Help CU, Sharonview FCU, and State Employees’ CU received grants. To date, the Carolinas Foundation processed 265 grants and awarded $195,933.22 in aid to credit union employees. Phase III grants were just finalized for the eight employees in the Carolinas who sustained devastating damage.
Whaley notes that more than 100 donations from credit unions and business partners in the Carolinas and nationwide made these grants possible. A final acknowledgement is in the works to be mailed to all generous supporters.
The Carolinas Credit Union Foundation’s Disaster Relief Fund has provided more than $2 million in aid to the local, national, and international credit union communities since its establishment. Any donation collected is disbursed dollar-for-dollar to aid in current or future disaster recovery.
For more details on recovery efforts from the non-profit sector, please check out these resources:
American Red Cross
Foundation for the Carolinas
Carolinas Credit Union Foundation announces Phase III cycle for disaster relief grants (2/13/19)
Disaster relief aid continues to CU employees impacted by Hurricane Florence (12/6/18)