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Cars, Cards and Collaboration Fuel Elements Financial’s CU4Kids Fundraising

By Sarah Snell Cooke

Elements Financial Federal Credit Union in Indianapolis has supported it’s local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, Riley Hospital for Children, for more than a decade. It even piggybacked its efforts to strengthen its already strong loan production for the credit union while helping patients and their families.

Elements Financial donates to CU4Kids Children's Miracle Network Hospitals
Superheroes made appearances at a local minor league baseball game to accept a check from Elements Financial to Riley!

The $1.7 billion Elements Financial offers members a co-branded affinity credit card, which returns a portion of the proceeds to the Riley Children’s Foundation through Credit Unions for Kids, according to Michelle Payne, Elements Financial’s assistant vice president for branding and communications.

Start raising money for your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital today! Learn more here.

Giving Money

“The affinity credit card was very exciting for Elements and for us,” Alane Helmer, assistant vice president for corporate and foundation giving at Riley Children’s Foundation, explained. “It was the first time we’ve done something like that.” The effort has subsequently raised $50,000 since 2015.

Additionally, car loans have been a hot offering for credit unions for the last decade, so Elements took advantage to provide even more to support Riley. Working with Helmer, the credit union launched Cars for Kids, now heading into its 10th summer.

Elements Financial has fun with patients from Riley Hospital for Children
Elements Financial gives of its time and its money to leave its community’s families happier and healthier.

Each year, Elements runs a six- to eight-week campaign in which it partners with local dealerships to raise funds for the children’s hospital – and auto loans. The credit union contributes $75 per loan made through the program and has collaborated with local dealerships for a matching $75 donation for the cars they’ve sold. The program raises an average of $25,000 annually, peaking at $43,000. Plus, it earns a Miracle Match from CO-OP Financial Services of $10,000 to $15,000 on top of that.

“Our members appreciate what we’re doing for their families and children’s health,” Payne said. The fundraising push has become an annual tradition that employees, members, Riley and the dealerships always anticipate with enthusiasm.

Credit unions can contribute to CU4Kids in a number of ways, as Elements does. Helmer added that she loves to work with credit unions on putting together CU4Kids fundraising programs. She stressed, “Don’t be afraid to come up with something that fits your business objectives.”

CU4Kids makes fundraising easy! Learn more under the ‘Campaigns’ tab here.

Giving Time

The money certainly helps support the hospital, totaling $175,000 since 2002, but it’s also about giving time to the community. Employees are given eight paid hours per year to volunteer in the community.

“Corporate volunteerism is a big part of our culture,” Payne highlighted. Elements’ employees attend events at the hospital and interact with the patients, doing crafts or playing video games. “That’s been very rewarding for our employees.”

Helmer added that Elements employees have come to Camp Riley, which is for kids with disabilities, to assemble picnic tables.

Patients aren’t the only ones who get love from Elements, but also the doctors and nurses who treat them day in and day out. Elements showed its appreciation for the incredible work they do with handmade thank you cards from Elements employees.

“The doctors and nurses always appreciate it,” Payne said. “They are special people.”