When we give together, we’re more than just members. We’re a force for good.

YOU, our members, chose 3 non-profits to receive a total of $50,000 in grants! A big congratulations to Zootown Arts Community Center with $25,000, Opportunity Resources Inc. with $15,000 and Garden City Harvest receiving $10,000! We are honored to be a part of this amazing community and support the non-profit organizations that work tirelessly to make our lives better! Learn more about the 7 non-profits that participated in this year’s Giving Together below:


Read More About Each Non-Profit

CASA of Missoula

CASA of Missoula is a non-profit, volunteer driven organization dedicated to advocating for abused and neglected children in Missoula and Mineral County. CASA of Missoula provides well-trained volunteer advocates to be the voice for abused and neglected children, advocating for their best interest until they reside in a safe, permanent home as quickly as possible. This award from Missoula Federal Credit Union would help CASA of Missoula reach our goal in providing a voice for every abused and neglected child in Missoula and Mineral County.

Five Valleys Land Trust

Arguably one of the key things that makes our Missoula community great is our connection to vast open spaces, trails, important wildlife habitat, clean rivers and traditional agricultural livelihoods. Five Valleys Land Trust has helped make our community a desirable place to live through preservation of significant landscapes through signature projects like Mount Jumbo and the Alberton Gorge.

Over the past year several years, we have been working with community partners to create and protect Missoula’s next open space legacy—Mount Dean Stone. Mount Dean Stone is a 4,200 acre complex that spans from Pattee Canyon to Miller Creek helping complete a 180 degree arc of conservation around Missoula from the North Hills to the Bitterroot River. It will also create trails out the back door for the southside of town—our fastest growing area of Missoula. We’re so excited to have the opportunity to provide new public trails and trailheads, improve access to existing public lands, preserve wildlife habitat, and reduce the threat of catastrophic wildfire.

With partners like you and Missoula Federal Credit Union we can continue to preserve the Montana we have today for future generations. Thank you for your support!

Garden City Harvest

Garden City Harvest builds community through agriculture here in Missoula. We do this with and for our neighbors in need. We do this on 10 urban farms and gardens through our farm to school, youth development, community gardens, and neighborhood farms programs. We’ve found over the years that education, connection, and healing go naturally with farming and digging. So we’ve built programs that that invite everyone—from teens to seniors to entire classrooms—to our farms and gardens, learning and growing with us. We meet people where they need us most: healthy food options for an emergency visit to the Missoula Food Bank, a place to dig in the dirt, a weekly share of veggies, a job, a field trip in the fresh air. We are a lifeline to health and wellbeing. We are here to help our community grow, feed, inspire.

Homeword

Since 1994, Homeword has used sustainable methods to provide safe, healthy housing people can afford and strengthens community through housing counseling and education for those in need.

Over the past 23 years, Homeword has been regionally and nationally recognized for its innovative programming and beautiful homes. We’ve developed and renovated nearly 750 units of innovative housing that over 1,100 Montanans call home through 26 projects in 11 Montana communities. Since 1997, our walk-in Regional HomeOwnership Center has served over 12,500 people, with 50% of our homebuyer education clients purchasing their first home. Our office and Regional HomeOwnership Center are located in Missoula.

Our clients are as diverse as our state. We serve primarily households with low to moderate incomes (earning less than 80% of the area median income). They include people with disabilities, seniors on fixed incomes, female-headed households, people who were formerly homeless, domestic violence survivors and veterans.

Sustainable communities are not built overnight – they are built one family at a time over a number of years. Having housing that they can afford and knowing how to manage their household finances allows people to stretch their budgets to cover other expenses – food, transportation, insurance, clothing, education, savings, etc. – so they can provide for their children and look forward to better futures. It means they can worry a little less, create a more calming atmosphere for themselves and their families and have more energy to engage with their neighbors.

Homebuyer education graduate Lauren Gonzales said, “Thanks to Homeword’s program, we felt knowledgeable and empowered through what is usually a very tumultuous and confusing process. It felt amazing to bring Joey home to a place we owned – a permanent situation that was safe and stable. A place that is so much more than a house. It is where my husband – an Iraq veteran – feels safe, secure and at peace.”

Missoula resident Willie Brown said, “I was just overjoyed because we had gone from having a home that we had owned to having absolutely nothing, and then walking into Solstice feeling instantly at home. We can put our roots down here. My son can be safe in this community. And I have a rent I can afford.”

Melissa Kooren said, “When we took the Financial Fitness class, my husband and I were trying to reconcile after being separated. One of our biggest areas of disagreement was budgeting, saving and working together for our financial future. The class put us on the same page and forced us to build a budget together. We’ve followed up the class with a few financial counseling sessions and it’s been very empowering and rewarding to feel the stress lessen and watch our financial worth increase. Homeword’s free services helped my family to work together. They allowed us to feel confident in the choices that we were making and look to the future with hope.”

Thank you for helping empower Montanans through housing, counseling and education that set them up for success both now and in the future!

Opportunity Resources

Opportunity Resources, Inc. (ORI) supports persons with disabilities in enhancing their quality of life. The goal is to support our clients in attaining independence in housing, employment and as many aspects of their daily lives as possible, while providing all of the support services required to achieve that goal. With the MFCU award, we will be able to continue this mission and impact hundreds of adults with disabilities seeking employment opportunities in Missoula, ultimately decreasing the unemployment rate for those with disabilities and positively impacting our economy.

Youth Homes

Since our founding in 1971, Youth Homes has helped over 10,000 Montana youth grow up. Over the years, we have seen our kids do some amazing things but we have also seen them struggle.

We have watched countless youth, with stars in their eyes, turn 18 and leave our homes and our shelters. Like every 18 year old, they are itching for the freedom and the power that comes with being an adult, but all too often, they face challenges still bigger than themselves. With no formal support or parents to rely on, they fight tooth and nail to find an apartment, come up with the needed funds to move in, hold a steady job, find reliable transportation and all the while care for their own mental health and wellbeing.

Many of them succeed against all odds but some of them still need a little help to get by. They need a safety net to catch them when all else seems to be falling apart.
As a community, we can fill this need. Youth Homes is asking you to vote for our Safety Net Fund which will provide that little bit of monetary support that so many of us have needed at one time or another to land us on our feet and get us on our way.

We all know that a little bit can go a long way so please help us to make all the difference for these kids. Vote for Youth Homes Safety Net Fund this year and let our kids amaze you too.

Zootown Arts Community Center

The ZACC is a nonprofit arts community center providing facilities and expertise, delivering all ages art education, and promoting accessible, life enriching art experiences for Missoula residents and visitors. The ZACC provides critical mentorship and confidence building workshops for youth and adults through the arts. We empower people of all ages through creativity regardless of experience or economic barriers. When you support the ZACC, you support over 20,000 hours of vital art and music education per year for youth, over 10,000 hours of art and music education per year for adults, The Missoula Festival Of The Dead, The Missoula Monster Project, The Last Best Printfest, The Northside/Westside Block Party, 25 free community art projects at major Missoula events per year, 12 gallery shows for emerging artists per year, Missoula’s community printshop, Free music programs for veterans, a safe all ages music space for teens, and especially- access to the arts for all. Your vote for the ZACC will help raise money that will go directly toward offering free and low cost programming for Missoula youth, veterans, seniors, teens, and adults. Art Changes Lives!