PORTLAND, Ore. (11/15/10)--Oregon credit unions are reaching out to young adults with iPads, a “second look” at loans that were initially denied and community partnerships that reach underserved markets. Those award-winning ideas were among the resourceful approaches to young adult outreach shared by 11 credit unions at a recent REAL Solutions workshop sponsored by the Credit Union Association of Oregon (CUAO). The majority of the Oregon credit unions participating in REAL Solutions began working on fresh approaches to reaching the young adult market in May 2010. Brent Dixon from the Filene Research Institute, Madison, Wis., used a series of webinars and workshops to coach credit union participants about the tools and mindset needed to reach young members. Three credit unions were recognized for innovative approaches that included:
* The iPad implementation project of Unitus Community CU, Portland, recognized as “best idea.” Two business development managers at Unitus use iPads to open accounts, make loans and sell services in the community. Since launching the iPad project, Unitus went from a monthly average of 67 new member accounts with a 3.33 cross-sell ratio to 102 new accounts with a 3.88 cross-sell ratio in August 2010. * The “second look” for loans that were initially denied for the target age group of 18 to 30 at Pacific Crest FCU, Klamath Falls, which was voted “most resourceful.” As a result of this culture shift in loan reviews, loans for this age group increased from 340 to 606 and balances increased from $2.7 million to $7.2 million. * The Mapping Your Future project at MaPs CU, Salem, which received a “wild card” award. The project uses community partnerships to bring financial services to underserved markets, particularly its Hispanic community. Five community partners and 10 financial educators will reach 100 Latino families to increase their financial capabilities.
Other outreach program participants were Point West CU, Portland; Northwest Resource FCU, Portland; Northwest Community CU, Springfield; Valley Health & Postal Employees CU, Salem; Wauna CU, Clatskanie; Rivermark CU, Beaverton; Rogue FCU, Medford; and Oregon Community CU, Eugene. REAL Solutions is a National Credit Union Foundation program that helps credit unions develop products and services to meet the needs of low wealth households.