ORONO – For the fourth consecutive year, University Credit Union is matching donations to help end hunger in Maine. Donations made online or in-person at any UCU location between Nov. 15 and Dec. 31 will be matched and donated, up to a total of $25,000 in 2021. Anyone can participate in the UCU Ending Hunger campaign and have their donation matched; credit union membership is not required.
Donations made through UCU will go to the Maine Credit Unions Campaign for Ending Hunger and provide critical supplemental funding for local food assistance programs, which have seen increased demand during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes community-based programs, such as local and regional food banks and pantries, as well as college campus-based programs throughout the University of Maine System.
As a state with a large seasonal economy already negatively impacted by COVID-19, Maine routinely sees a rise in demand for food assistance during cold weather months. According to Feeding America, over 166,000 Mainers experience hunger and of them, over 44,000 are children. Additionally, newly published research by the University of Maine, Husson University, and the Maine Campus Compact found severe food insecurity among Maine college students as of 2018, with 69 percent of students surveyed reporting having experienced issues such as an inability to eat balanced meals, worry over insufficient money for food, skipping meals, lack of access to fresh produce, skipping meals to feed someone else, and not eating for one to two days.
“Access to adequate, nutritional food is foundational to personal health and wellbeing,” said UCU President and CEO Renee Ouellette. “As a member-owned financial institution, our priority is helping Mainers advance their financial wellbeing every day – and that begins with food. By making a gift before Dec. 31, donors can double their impact on the fight to end hunger and on the lives of Mainers in need.”
To make the most of planned giving this holiday season, please consider donating online at https://campaignforendinghunger.org/ucu/ or by visiting your local UCU location. To give back another way, consider donating time by contacting a food pantry in your local area to ask how you can safely volunteer. For more information, visit ucumaine.com/endinghunger.
Established on the University of Maine campus in 1967, University Credit Union is an innovative, full-service financial institution with a mission to actively advance the financial well-being of our members in every stage of their lives. UCU is the seventh largest credit union in Maine in terms of total assets, sixth in total members, and has retail locations across the state located in Orono, Bangor, Farmington, Gorham, Portland, and Presque Isle. For more information visit ucumaine.com.