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February 7, 2018

Maine credit unions raise record amount toward ending hunger

Courtesy / Maine Credit Union League
Courtesy / Maine Credit Union League
Holding the check announcing the record-setting total raised by the Maine credit unions' Campaign for Ending Hunger in 2017 are (from left): Devon Harris, three-time Olympian with the Jamaican bobsled team who has a foundation that helps provide meals to children; Joann Bisson, chair of the Maine Credit Union League's social responsibility committee; and Todd Mason, president and CEO of the Maine Credit Union League.

Representatives of Maine's credit unions gathered in South Portland on Tuesday to celebrate a record $740,027 raised in 2017 to help end hunger in Maine.

Last year's campaign brings the total raised in 28 years to more than $8 million, the group said in a press release.

"I am impressed by the cooperation, generosity and enthusiasm that our credit unions and nearly 700,000 credit union members have towards making a difference in the community," said Todd Mason, president and CEO of the Maine Credit Union League.

He added: "Giving back is both selfless and selfish. It is selfless because you are helping others, and selfish because it makes you feel good. Keep being selfless and selfish when it comes to ending hunger because people need you."

The organization noted that 100% of the state's credit unions participated in the 2017 fundraising.

Tuesday's celebration luncheon featured Devon Harris, a three-time Olympian with the Jamaican bobsled team and one of the inspirations for the 1993 Disney blockbuster film "Cool Runnings," as the keynote speaker. He formed a foundation in 2006 that helps provide meals to elementary school-age children.

"You are providing hope to kids I was once like. Empty cupboard, no food, been there done that," Harris told attendees. "The help that credit unions in Maine are giving to kids and adults, in general, through your campaign is amazing. You have found a cause and you are making a difference in the lives of the people in your state."

The Maine Credit Union League is the state trade association for Maine's 56 credit unions with 685,000 members.

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