Vancity Cuts Credit Card Rates to Zero
In a first for any financial institution, Vancity will be temporarily dropping its credit card interest rates to zero percent to help those affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
CEO and President Tamara Vrooman says having access to credit for groceries, medicine and other purchases is critical for many families right now. In addition, Vancity is waiving fees for online banking, e-transfers and using ATMs until September 30.
Vancity has also set up a “Unity Term Deposit,” which is a one-year, non-redeemable fund paying 3 percent interest with funds generated going back into local communities.
Desjardins Steps Up To Assist Youth
Desjardins is taking special steps to assist youth affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. President and CEO Guy Cormier says many young people have had their school year interrupted, lost jobs and are isolated from friends leading to high levels of anxiety.
To this end Desjardin has taken the following measures for its members 30 and under:
-establishing a psychological hotline and provisions for legal support
-donating $220,000 to Kids Help Phone and Alloprof to keep them operating and able to handle the increased volume of calls
-increasing the Desjardin Foundation scholarship fund to $1.8 million. Applications are due by April 15.
Desjardins has also provided loan deferrals, reduced credit card rates, donated to the United Way and 20,000 N95 masks to assist during these challenging times.
Labrador Co-op Rallies to Support Girl Guides
This year’s Girl Guide Cookie campaign was launched just as the COVID-19 pandemic was taking hold and nearly grounded the annual fundraising effort. The cookies are often sold door-to-door but with physical distancing this just isn’t possible.
Luckily for the Girl Guides, many businesses have stepped up to help including the Terrington Co-op in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador.
Board President George Andrews says the Co-op bought 269 cases of cookies and is selling them in the store with no markup. They also gave boxes to first responders in the area as a token of appreciation.
Other retailers across the country are also pitching in to help sell the cookies including London Drugs and Canadian Tire.
Girl Guides CEO Jill Zelmanovits says “it’s made me proud to be a Canadian and very thankful that retailers are helping a Canadian non-profit.” Annual cookie sales account for 67 percent of the Guides’ revenue which goes right into local programming.