We Improve Financial Well-Being
BECU is committed to supporting the community at every age and stage, and empowering smarter, savvier members. From the first savings account to comfortable retirement, we educated 20,520 people last year in various financial stages of life. That’s why 59% of our total giving is dedicated to reinforcing the four pillars of financial health: Spend, Save, Borrow, and Plan.
With our high-interest-earning Early Saver Account, more kids started out on the right financial foot in 2019. Over 100,000 youth have Early Saver accounts, which pay a premium interest rate on the first $500 in deposits. It’s an easy (and profitable) way for kids to learn about interest and create a savings habit.
Over 16,000 students practiced real-world finances through in-class lessons, our EverFi partnership and our Annual Day of Service. During the one-day service event, BECU employees conduct budgeting simulations with thousands of high school students across Washington state. In 2019, more than 2,000 BECU employees interacted with over 11,000 students at 18 schools statewide. Since 2015, we’ve helped more than 30,000 teens understand how to manage their money.
When it comes to talking to kids about money, parents can get nervous. In 2019, our BECU consumer survey revealed that only 28% of parents discuss financial topics with their kids, and name fear as a primary barrier. To ease the conversation, we developed the Next Big Talk conversation guide for parents to speak with their kids about money at home.
Next Big Talk Tip: To boost your teen’s financial knowledge, ask them to plan a dinner with a $20 budget, or review together credit card offers received in the mail taking care to discuss the fine print.
THANK YOU for allowing us to be part of this great event for the second year in a row. Our students really gained a lot of insight and knowledge into this hands-on experience.” —Roderick B., teacher at participating Annual Day of Service school
Our programs focus on financial well-being. Nearly 1,000 members participated in a one-on-one Financial Health Check, and more than 3,300 members of BECU and the community attended free financial webinars and in-person sessions on topics like home buying, investing and more.
We Partner with Members to Give Back
Our member-inspired giving starts with you. Every year, our members nominate change-making nonprofits that are inspirational, powerful and community-based. In 2019, we received more than 800 nominations—ranging from theater companies to children’s services to conservation organizations—for nonprofits serving the Puget Sound region, Spokane, Washington and Charleston, South Carolina.
Then, BECU members raised money, one penny at a time, through our Make A Purchase. Make A Difference. Campaign. For each member’s August and September credit and debit card transactions, one cent was donated to the campaign. We surpassed our $515,000 goal and raised $594,000.
On December 5, 2019, BECU presented awards to 18 nonprofit finalists at our People Helping People Awards ceremony. Our winning organizations represent a wide range of issues impacting diverse audiences in meaningful ways. The recipients include:
Shawn Cole with Raising Girls, which presents South Sound girls and boys with care bags to help prevent personal hygiene needs from keeping them out of school.
BECU Foundation Scholarships
Our charitable, private BECU Foundation awarded a total of $384,500 to 151 students (including renewable scholarships from the previous year) last year. Of those, 80 new recipients were members receiving $2,500 or $3,500 scholarships each for postsecondary program use.
Scholarships are renewable over a two-year period and recognize student members demonstrating leadership, community service, and academic potential. Since 1995, the BECU Foundation has given more than 1,100 student members more than $3 million in scholarships.