SEFCU’s Surprise Donations of Blankets, Coats and Other Items for Shelters during Code Blue

With rates of homelessness going up and temperatures going down, the individuals turning to many of the shelters throughout SEFCU’s geographic footprint may be a little cozier on cold nights, thanks to the outpouring of generous support from the credit union’s employees and members. 

During the 2018 Holiday Sharing campaign, SEFCU employees and members helped bring joy and cheer to more than 160 families through the Adopt-A-Family initiative. However, the flood of donations exceeded what SEFCU had projected. The $20,000 surplus has now gone to support 11 shelters within its branch footprint, which includes Upstate New York’s Capital Region, Binghamton, Syracuse and Buffalo areas.

Stack of donated blankets and coats

Many of the homeless shelters supported extend their hours of operations and occupancy when the temperature is 32 degrees or lower. Among the items donated were fleece blankets, winter coats, socks, toiletry kits, sheet sets, and new sleeping cots to accommodate the surplus in shelter guests. 

“My hope is that there comes a day when we do not have people living on the streets, but until we do, those organizations providing shelter, especially during the coldest winter nights, are absolutely saving lives. Extreme winter weather can cause hypothermia, serious injury, and death, and SEFCU will be here to support the life-saving efforts of the many shelters in our area.  I cannot be more proud to know that our employees and members have fueled this effort through their hard work and financial support,” said SEFCU President & CEO Michael J. Castellana.

The Holiday Sharing program is just one way that SEFCU employees and members can contribute money to help those in need. The credit union established a Giving for Good program to allow people to donate as little as $1 per month to support organizations aiding youth, families, and veterans within the regions in which SEFCU does business.

For more information about how you can help rally around initiatives like these, visit our Giving for Good page.