ACU’s grants program invests locally

Healthy, vibrant and diverse communities don’t just happen; they’re created over time by people, organizations and businesses continuously working together for the common good.

Since 2007, Assiniboine Credit Union (ACU) has supported our local communities through our grants program. Applications are open year-round but are reviewed twice a year, in spring and fall.

three smiling children with their artwork

ACU’s grants program

ACU’s grants program contributes to organizations that build community and fall under three pillars: community inclusion for marginalized people, environmental sustainability, and community enterprise development through things like community-minded co-ops and social businesses.

Regarding the types of projects that the program accepts, ACU will consider grant requests for:

  • Equipment (upgraded computers, office furniture, secure storage facilities)
  • Planning (strategic and feasibility plans, community consultations)
  • Public awareness (website redesign, video production, information and display materials)
  • Professional development (training, retreats, conferences and workshops)
classroom with student raising her hand

Giving opportunities for employees to be part of their communities 

As part of our mission to provide financial services for the betterment of our members, employees and communities, we invest our skills and resources to create positive social impact, which includes our grants program. Each year, eight ACU employees from across the organization volunteer their time to review and assess the applications. 

Having employees participate in the grants intake process has many benefits, including volunteering and making a difference. Being part of the committee allows employees to learn more about the members we serve and demonstrates ACU’s values in action.

North Point Douglas Women's Centre team

A program that gives back

Alexandria De Zorzi, ACU Brand & Campaign Specialist, says serving on the grants committee has been fulfilling in many ways. “It’s a fun way to learn about organizations that are doing wonderful things in our community.”

The committee also creates a collaborative space for ACU employees to connect with like-minded people and gain informal leadership experience.

Alexandria De Zorzi headshot

“Being part of the committee has definitely been an opportunity to get involved, learn and grow,” shares Alex. 

2022 community grants

Last year, the grants committee selected 51 organizations and awarded them $219,117 in total. 

Epic Opportunities, one of the successful grant applicants, provides holistic, person-centred support to people with intellectual disabilities and promotes inclusive communities.

Epic Opportunities Director of Human Resources Kristin Knockaert

Their grant-supported training focused on building understanding and commitment to foster a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism at Epic Opportunities.

“The project provided the overall leadership team with open dialogue to develop skills and awareness to foster a respectful, inclusive, and equitable environment where everyone can thrive, today and in the future. We received tools and resources to use in our EDI (Equity, Diversity and Inclusion) journey as an organization, which will help us in the next stages of our strategic plan commitments,” said Epic Opportunities Director of Human Resources Kristin Knockaert.

Kristin also shared that this training gave employees space to further discuss these important topics:

“We are incredibly grateful to ACU for the grant support we received for this project. Following these sessions, we experienced our team actively engaging in conversations about what they learned and how they were stretched to think about their perspectives of EDI.”

2023 ACU Community Grant banner

We are now accepting 2023 grant applications!

Our 2023 intake deadlines:
Spring – Monday, May 15, 2023
Fall – Monday, October 30, 2023

About Maria Cristina Laureano

MC (Maria Cristina) Laureano is ACU's Community Relations Specialist. She oversees ACU's grants and sponsorships program and, as her title implies, she is out in the community engaging with partners to strengthen ACU's community involvement initiatives. Along with her community work at ACU, MC is an avid volunteer and is part of numerous boards and committees — community is definitely one of her passions!

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