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Logo of Island Savings a division of First West Credit UnionIsland Savings a division of First West Credit Union296 employees on Do Some Good
Island Savings, a division of First West Credit Union, is a premier provider of banking, borrowing, investment and insurance services for residents and businesses throughout Van...
We're committed to giving back to the community!
View the Pledge
499 Canada Ave
Duncan, British Columbia
V9L 1T7
Causes we care about

Top company causes

  • Arts & Culture

  • Food & Nutrition

  • Financial Literacy

Top employee causes

  • Food & Nutrition

  • Animal Welfare

  • Health & Well-being

  • Community and Economic Development

  • Environment

  • Food & Nutrition

  • Animal Welfare

  • Health & Well-being

  • Community and Economic Development

  • Environment

Organizations our employees volunteer with
Our average annual contributions

$665K

Dollars Donated

5K

Hours Logged by Employees

$119K

Monetary Equivalent of Hours

Social Mission
Island Savings' Full Cupboard program raises food, funds & awareness for local food banks across the region. We're proud that in 2019, together with our employees and community partners, we raised $77,550. That's the equivalent of 232,650 meals for children and families in our communities.
Some of the organizations we support
Food Banks BC
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Cowichan Valley
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Victoria
Cowichan Therapeutic Riding Association
Chemainus Theatre Festival Society
Cowichan Capitals
What people are saying about us
Picture of Campaign ManagerLogo of Canada150
Campaign ManagerCanada150

It is great to see a Good Company, such as Island Savings, giving back to their local community. Local acts of kindness, volunteerism and donations help to make our country the amazing place that it is today. A big thanks to Island Savings for their contributions to building a stronger and more connected community.

Stories of our community involvement
Congratulations to #SimpleGenerosity volunteer recipient from Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union, Angela Walmsley. Angela has awarded a $1,000 SimpleGenerosity donation to Nanaimo Community Hospice Society!

Angela, with her dog Hudson, began volunteering with the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog Unit three years ago and since May 2019, she has volunteered as a Unit Facilitator for the Nanaimo Therapy Dog Program (TDP), facilitating recruitment, evaluation, scheduling, and training for new therapy dog teams.

Angela and Hudson volunteer their time at various places in the Nanaimo community, including the Wexford Extended Care, North Oyster School, Nanaimo RCMP Victim Services, the Nanaimo Hospice Community House, and Palliative Care Unit at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital. They also volunteer at Vancouver Island University during exam times and other community events. Together, they provide those in need with a moment of joy, compassion, and companionship, which has helped decrease stress, pain, and improve mental health and quality of life for many of the people they visit.

Angela has selflessly given her time, kindness, and dedication to the TDP in Nanaimo and it has thrived under her leadership. She has been an active volunteer since she began in 2015, logging in close to 1,000 hours.

Thank you for inspiring us Angela!
Congratulations to #SimpleGenerosity recipient from Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union, Pete Thompson! Pete has awarded a $1,000 #SimpleGenerosity grant to St. John Ambulance.

Volunteering with St. John Ambulance for almost 15 years, Pete serves as Divisional Community Services Coordinator and Divisional Superintendent. A member of the St. John Ambulance Medical First Responders team in Victoria since 2005, Pete’s division provides first aid and healthcare services to events in and around the city. It is one of the busiest divisions in BC, providing services to hundreds of events, such as Canada Day festivities, Remembrance Day celebrations, concerts, and local fairs, ensuring that Victoria eventgoers are safe.

Pete has made a special contribution to the marginalized members of the community. He brings his input to the Downtown Service Providers organization, continues the division’s first aid clinic at the Our Place drop-in and residential centre, and has led the start-up of a similar clinic at Rock Bay Landing. Since joining Division 176, Pete has been able to record over 8,500 volunteer hours. Peter’s promotion of a culture of caring and compassion has had a profound effect in his community.

Peter is an exceptional volunteer and continues to help enhance safety and healthcare in Victoria.

Thank you for inspiring us Peter!
We know you love community as much as we do! So, with that in mind, we're pleased to announce 14 grants, totaling $109,950 heading to Vancouver Island charities with our 2020 Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union community endowment grants. Looking for more details? Check out: http://bitly.ws/8RpB

Feeding our community


Our friends at Cowichan Green Community have been working hard feeding families across the region. The Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union and First West Foundation Community Help Fund is pleased to provide a $500 grant to help kickstart a community fundraising initiative. Join us and ensure Island families have the food resources they need.


Tell us about your charity and how the community can help your organization


CGC is a dynamic, multi-tasking organization that has mobilized to respond to the needs of our community due to Covid19 and the negative effects its been having on food security. For over a decade, we've been focusing on improved access to local food, improving our food systems, creating policy to support more urban and rural agriculture, and sharing knowledge to everyone from youngsters to elders to just 'grow more food!' Through these past few months, we've created an Emergency Food Access Task Force and have helped other organizations fundraise and apply for grants to support all our important work from Malahat Nation to the Chemainus Neighbourhood House. It's been inspiring to lead this group and see the collaboration and cooperation with everyone coming to the table for a common 'cause'. We need/want to keep this group going, organizing meals to the shelters, supporting additional education, community gardens, and ensuring everyone is healthy and happy. All funds raised are going to this Task Force to help provide grocery gift cards, hampers, and meals. Thank you for your support!

Donate


http://www.cgcf.ca

Supporting local youth


Resources and capacity needs to increase supports for local youth gets a $10,000 boost from the Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union and First West Foundation Community Response Fund. We're also donating an additional $500 to help kickstart fundraising efforts. Join us and help our youth thrive.


Tell us about your charity and how the community can help your organization


Our vision is that all youth are living healthy, fulfilling lives. We come alongside youth in mentoring relationships to support them as they transition out of care. We hope to provide youth with practical support skills so they may thrive while reducing their presence on the streets during the evening hours. While significant challenges still face too many young women and men on Victoria’s streets, we have observed real progress with our program. The Sanctuary team intentionally plans programs while allocating staff and volunteer time, and as a result, we maximize what the Centre can offer the youth who attend Sanctuary. The specific goals the Centre has are to increase the opportunities for youth to access: employment; counselling; addictions and health service referrals; access to permanent housing; and overcoming vulnerability related to relationship issues.
Our staff and volunteers provide a tremendous amount of emotional and sometimes hands-on support through time spent assisting youth with their day-to-day needs. This includes practical activities such as helping with moving, providing rides to-and-from appointments, going for coffee and locating suitable rental suites. We write reference letters to landlords for the youth and assist them with employment searches.
Extensive research by homelessness and youth agencies shows that the number one precursor to youth avoiding long-term homelessness is when they find consistent, mature, and emotional support. Our experience has identified that the best time for mentoring happens at the late stages of adolescence or when youth age out of foster care. We aim to come alongside youth so that they can more successfully gain independence, access housing, and live in a safe community. Sanctuary receives approximately 3000 visits per year. We see over 200 different youth living primarily in the City of Victoria, Esquimalt, Vic West, and Saanich. We have a list of over 100 youth who regularly, on any given weekend, drop by the Centre.

Donate


https://www.sanctuaryyouth.org/donate

Community gardens are thriving


How is your garden growing? The Community Help Fund from Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union and First West Foundation is granting $500 to help raise funds to support the continued sustainability of the gardens at Salt Spring Island Farmland Trust.


Tell us about your charity and how the community can help your organization


Salt Spring Island Farmland Trust preserves farmland, a mission essential to all of us. As part of this mission the FLT operates community gardens, and provides education and experience growing, preserving and cooking locally grown food. Everyone on Salt Spring Island is a steward of the good way of life on the Island. The Salt Spring Island Farmland Trust is one wonderful way everyone can participate in the preservation of farmland and the culture of farming and great food, to benefit everyone now and for future generations. What will happen if there is no more farmland and farming on the Island? It could easily happen, but let's all work together so Salt Spring Island is a model of joyful food sustainability.

Donate


https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/salt-spring-island-farmland-trust-society

Growing support for our community


A grant of $7,500 from the Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union and First West Foundation Community Response Fund is on its way to 1Up Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre. We’re adding a Community Help grant of $500 to kickstart fundraising efforts which will help extend food supports beyond the weeks of summer.


Tell us about your charity and how the community can help your organization


1Up Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre is a registered non-profit charity that has been committed to serving the varied and changing needs of single parent families in the Greater Victoria area since 1978. We provide practical support, opportunities for growth and a sense of hope to one-parent families across Greater Victoria. Guided by skilled and committed staff and trained volunteers, as 1Up we offer important services to create foundations for personal and community growth in a welcoming and non-judgmental environment. We are committed to offering effective services that accommodate individual differences and respond to changing needs. Currently we are serving over 1,800 families in the Greater Victoria community.

The community can help our organization by making monetary donations to our programming or giving donations of goods. We accept good condition clothes for men, women, children, teens and infants for our free clothing store. We also accept food donations of non-perishable goods and are seeking partnerships with local grocery stores who would like to give us excess food they cannot sell.

Our website www.singleparentvictoria.ca has a direct place to donate using gift tool from our home page. There is also a link there to other ways to give. Thanks!

Donate


https://www.singleparentvictoria.ca
We're sending blankets and teddies to our friends YMCA of Okanagan Young Parents Program! COVID19 restrictions on volunteer opportunities kickstarted a virtual volunteer role for our team members Valley First, a division of First West Credit Union. Employees from our regional partners, Envision Financial and Island Savings jumped in too and created blankets filled with love for 16 children.
We're donning our jerseys and our jeans at Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union for BC Children's Hospital Foundation this May. Shout out to our colleagues who are supporting BC Children's Hospital Foundation, Feed the Valley and The Full Cupboard this May through our #FWWednesday initiative. First West Credit Union is proudly sporting our #FWWednesday jersey's & jeans in support of our local foodbanks and BC Children's Hospital. Let's get BC's children out of their hospital gowns and back into their jeans! And while we're at it, let's help all children and families across the Province with access to food and food security through Feed the Valley and The Full Cupboard.
Our non-profit agencies have been hit hard with many of their annual events and fundraisers cancelled as a result of the pandemic. People are starting to pivot however and getting creative with alternatives. Yesterday I was happy to support the Annual MS Walk in Cowichan which as part of a national initiative went virtual this year. Instead of the traditional large scale events people were encouraged to do the walk from home or in smaller groups. There was also alternatives proposed such as having people share their art or talents and collect donations online for MS research.

Daphne Swift has raised funds and awareness for the MS Society since 2012 when she submitted her first Swift Walkers Team as part of the Annual Walk. This year her team was the top fundraiser in Cowichan with more than $3,714 in pledges. On Sunday her team gathered at the Cowichan Sportsplex in their red and did some laps of the track, keeping their distance but keeping the energy high, complete with some Dr. Seuss style deely-boppers on their heads. Shout out to my Island Savings a division of First West Credit Union colleagues Lisa Byers, Miranda Mackay and Avneet Mann and her family who came out to support. Was great to connect with everyone and catch up in person!

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an unpredictable, sometimes disabling disease of the central nervous system. Life can turn on a dime when someone receives this diagnosis: one day the body behaves normally, and the next it refuses to listen. MS can cause symptoms such as lack of coordination, weakness, vision problems, and cognitive impairment, but there is no way to predict when and how intensely one will experience their symptoms making life with MS uncertain. With an average of 11 Canadians being diagnosed with MS every day, Canada has one of the highest rates of MS in the world. For more information or to make a donation go to https://mssociety.ca #WeChallengeMS
We're committed to giving back to the community!
View the Pledge
499 Canada Ave
Duncan, British Columbia
V9L 1T7
Causes we care about

Top company causes

  • Arts & Culture

  • Food & Nutrition

  • Financial Literacy

Top employee causes

  • Food & Nutrition

  • Animal Welfare

  • Health & Well-being

  • Community and Economic Development

  • Environment

  • Food & Nutrition

  • Animal Welfare

  • Health & Well-being

  • Community and Economic Development

  • Environment

Organizations our employees volunteer with
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