WASHINGTON (6/16/08)--The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) is appealing to credit unions and related organizations for online CUAid donations to assist credit unions affected by the floods in the Midwest. CUAid is the national disaster relief program for credit unions. Iowa Credit Union Foundation (ICUF) had been accepting donations last week when flooding began. But with more flooding projected for the weekend, ICUF Executive Director Marybeth Foster said Friday it expected to receive more disaster relief grant applications than it can fund. ICUF was capping grants at $500 for immediate emergencies. Donors from Iowa can use www.cuaid.coop/iowa. Those from other states can use their own state's CUAid.coop site or the national site, CUAid. All sites link to a CUAid grant application for Iowa flood relief. Donations made through CUAid for the Iowa flood relief effort will go toward grants. NCUF does not use disaster funds to pay for the CUAid.coop web platform or any costs it incurs in administering the national disaster relief program for credit unions. Donations will help address several needs:
* Critical needs: Credit union employees and volunteers can receive assistance for items for daily living such as, but not limited to, food, water, ice, batteries, clothing, diapers, temporary shelter, housing, gas and transportation. Grant applicants who no longer work in the credit union movement more than 90 days after the disaster are no longer eligible for CUAid disaster relief grants unless they actively work to return to the credit union movement. * Longer-term Recovery Needs: Even after recovering what they can from insurance payouts, victims may need assistance rebuilding or relocating to a new home, or replacing lost vehicles and household items. As long as funds remain in the Disaster Relief Fund, those managing the recovery efforts may expand the grant criteria to include longer-term recovery needs not fully covered by insurance. * Reasonable Operational Needs: Assistance may also be provided directly to credit unions and their support organizations to help them become and remain operational. These expenses may include relocating, setting up temporary service facilities, joining shared service networks, hiring temporary staff, mentoring and counseling traumatized staff, repairing building damage, replacing destroyed computer software/hardware, office furniture, office supplies, and other needs not fully covered by insurance. All purchases must be reasonable and of the same standards as being replaced. * Assisting Credit Union Members: While CUAid’s guidelines focus on providing support to assist credit union organizations, their employees and families, some funds may be used to provide disaster-related services to members.