BECU Grants $525,000 to Nonprofits through People Helping People Awards

The credit union received more than 500 nominations from its members to direct its funding

SEATTLE (December 11, 2020) — During a virtual event yesterday evening, BECU honored 28 nonprofits and BECU members as part of its annual People Helping People Awards program, granting $525,000 in total. The program was driven by more than 500 nominations from BECU members, who recognized nonprofits serving communities in the Puget Sound region and Spokane, Washington, Oregon and Charleston, South Carolina.

“This has been a year of immense and unforeseen social and economic challenges in every region. We’re continually inspired by the selfless work of volunteers and local nonprofits that are dedicated to the well-being and resilience of communities,” said Solynn McCurdy, BECU’s senior vice president of Social Impact. “Guided by our purpose, BECU is honored to support the important work of these organizations, who live out the ‘people helping people’ philosophy each day in our communities.”

BECU’s 2020 People Helping People Award recipients are awarded in five categories:

Previous program recipients are also encouraged to apply for People Helping People Collaboration Grants, which recognize a joint opportunity for two or more organizations to collaborate on a project.

The following five partnerships received 2020 Collaboration Grants ($15,000):

  • Community Roots Housing Foundation and Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority: Expanding meal delivery for high-need affordable housing residents through a project called Community Kitchens.
  • Friends of the Children Seattle and Childhaven: Offering specialized support services through Childhaven to address trauma, and continued care and mentorship through Friends of the Children.
  • Open Doors for Multicultural Families and Benefits Law Center: Providing access to legal representation in Social Security matters for people living with developmental/intellectual disabilities.
  • Reading Partners and Literacy Source: Supporting families with learning at home during COVID—19.
  • Urban Artworks and Mini Mart City Park: Partnering on an arts-based employment opportunity for youth experiencing barriers to arts, employment and education.

All 2019 and 2020 People Helping People Award recipients receive a grant of $2,500 for the two years following their initial award. Since 2013, BECU has donated more than $2.5 million to local charities through the program, which recognizes nonprofits focused on key community issues such as health and wellness, education, arts and culture and environmental welfare.


About BECU
BECU is federally insured by NCUA. With more than 1.2 million members and more than $25 billion in assets, BECU is the largest not-for-profit credit union in Washington and one of the top five financial cooperatives in the country. As a member-owned credit union, BECU is focused on helping increase the financial well-being of its members and communities through better rates, fewer fees, community partnerships and financial education. The credit union currently operates more than 50 locations in Washington and two financial centers in South Carolina. For more information, visit


For further information: For further information: Bethany Hawley, BECU, 206-439-5919,; Avery FitzPatrick, BECU, 206-965-3186,