Our region has diverse landscapes, ranging from urban metropolises to the rural countryside. The challenges facing urban and rural communities differ greatly,resulting in a rangeof needs and approaches to financial health. Rural communities are rich with opportunities for innovative collaboration and out of the box solutions. When faced with change, they are resilient, finding unique solutions to challengesand utilizing nontraditional resources.With the exodus of bank branches, the rural landscape is a prime environment for credit unions to pilot new products and services to better serve these communities and help them thrive.
Through the Rural Access to Financial Services Initiative, GoWest Foundation is looking to support the amazing work credit unions are already doing in their rural communities and will serve as a hub for incubating innovative ideas that improve access tofinancial servicesoptions in rural areas. We will partner with credit unions, providing funding and resources, to pilot new solutions to rural challenges and increase financial well-being across all of our communities. GoWest Foundation will continue to connect with other philanthropic organizations and funders interested in supporting the efforts of credit unions in the region.
Planning and project grant applications are currently being accepted. If your credit union is interested in getting involved and applying for a grant for your rural-based project, please apply or submit your interest below.
Rural Access Grants
GoWest Credit Union Association member credit unions that are interested in exploring the needs of the rural communities in your membership are welcome to apply for a planning grant of up to $10,000 or a project grant up to $50,000 to support your efforts.
All GoWest Credit Union Association credit unions serving rural areas are encouraged to apply. For an overview of the planning and project grants available for the Rural Access to Financial Services program, please see the resource below.
If you are interested in learning more about the Rural Access to Financial Services Initiative or if you have a project in mind and would like to know if it qualifies for grant support, please submit your questions here.
The Northwest is constantly changing. Its storied landscapes, diverse communities, and economy never stop evolving. As the financial needs of Northwest residents shift, credit unions continually strive for new innovations that meet those needs. That is especially true in rural areas where remoteness, evolving economies, and sometimes, banks closing branches or leaving, make it challenging for residents seeking financial services. “Rural residents need a financial partner they can trust to help grow their communities, expand economic development, and bridge the earnings gap,” said Dr. Neil Tocher, professor and Chair of the Department of Marketing and Management in the Idaho State…