Credit union builds a lasting legacy with Phoenix Foundation

Erin Perkins
By Erin Perkins
January 22nd, 2012

The Phoenix Foundation will be $1 million richer with a generous commitment from the Grand Forks Credit Union announced Thursday, Jan. 19.


The credit union, who donated $100,000 each of the last two years to the Phoenix Foundation, will continue donations into the Grand Forks Credit Union Community Endowment Fund until the fund reaches a principal value of $1 million. The amount donated from year to year will be determined by the annual profits of the credit union.


“This will be a significant long term commitment to the legacy of the Boundary area,” said Michael Strukoff, board chair for the Grand Forks Credit Union. “On behalf of our members we are pleased to give this donation.”


“I want to give thanks to the generous contributions of our founding donors,” said Maxine Ruzicka, a lifetime member of the foundation. “Our community is small in numbers but big in spirit. This (donation) can build and sustain a community foundation and be eternally reinvested into this community.”


The Phoenix Foundation will be celebrating its 15th anniversary this year. The foundation’s directors currently manage $1.5 million in endowments — $425,000 of which has been contributed by the credit union, who is a founding donor of the foundation.


“Any contribution, no matter how small or how large, makes a difference in the Boundary,” said Linda Manzon, co-president of the foundation.  “This very generous donation will significantly benefit the Boundary. Thank you for believing in the Boundary and your confidence in our partnership and in the work we do in the Boundary.”


With charitable donations, the foundation builds permanent income earning funds and the annual income earned by these funds are used to support local initiatives across the Boundary region.


The foundation has donated more than $315,000 in grants to organizations supporting everything from families to animal welfare since 1998. In addition, over $40,000 has been given for scholarships, agency and donor advised funds. The foundation’s existence has allowed for additional grants from government money to come to the Boundary for specific projects.


New credit union website for philanthropy


While announcing the donation to the Phoenix Foundation, Angela Soukoreff, Grand Forks Credit Union manager of marketing and communications, unveiled a new national website that allows users to track credit union philanthropy work.


The creditunionsarehelpinghere.com website gives an up-to-date way to track initiatives and financial contributions by credit unions across Canada, province by province.


A new purple map point, like what you would see on Google Maps, pinpoints the location and provides additional information about the projects.

 For more information about the Phoenix Foundation visit www.phoenix-foundation.net. 

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