Sydney Credit Union Wins Coady Award for Community Involvement

(Above, Sydney Credit Union Board Chair Lawrence MacDonald and CEO Bob Coffin accept the 2010 Coady Award. Photo courtesy of Jim MacLean.)

(HALIFAX, Nova Scotia) Sydney Credit Union has 75 years of history, a charitable foundation, a $10,700 scholarship program, a trauma centre in Sydney named for them and an excellent reputation for community giving; and as of Friday, April 8, they also have a third Coady Award recognizing their efforts.

The Coady Award is given annually to honour the Nova Scotia or Newfoundland and Labrador credit union or caisse populaire that best exemplifies leadership, support and involvement in its community. It has been given out since 1954 by the Credit Union Central of Nova Scotia, which is now Atlantic Central. The award was named for Dr. Moses Coady, a pioneer and a “giant” in the cooperative movement who encouraged his followers to strive for a meaningful economic democracy that would permit the higher social activities of mankind. Sydney Credit Union has won the award in 1977, 2000 and now, for 2010.

Sydney Credit Union’s CEO Robert Coffin said, “Sydney Credit Union’s commitment to Cooperative Social Responsibility has been very strong for the past 75 years, but it’s just during the past 6 years that we have actually focused on changing policies and defining our role in our community. We recognize what we have to do to seek sustainable solutions that involve and balance the interests of our organization, our members, our staff, our communities, our sister cooperative sectors and our environment. We are indeed very proud of this accomplishment. Without the support of everyone—board, management, staff and our members—we would not be able to contribute the way we do and have the impact we have in our community.”

Highlights of Sydney Credit Union’s philanthropy include:

*Partnered with Cape Breton University to develop a Cooperative Development Research Project. Results will be used to build a Cooperative Development Initiative with the CBRM.

*Expanded scholarship program to $10,700.

*Partnered with CBRM to host a family fun day for the community called Kidspree!

*Continued long history of support for Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation, donating over $240,000 in total. In recognition, the Foundation announced the naming of the Sydney Credit Union Trauma Centre.

*Donated $25,000 in 2010 to local charities & organizations plus set up the Sydney CU Charitable Foundation and donated $75,000 to it to enhance community giving initiatives.

*Started the first annual Breakfast for Learning golf tournament and raised $26,000 for the Breakfast for Learning school program.

Sydney Credit Union also has an innovative social media program to engage youth and other community members. They were the first credit union in this province to hire a social media coordinator.

For more information on Sydney’s award-winning philanthropy, please visit their Facebook page.