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SELCO Steps Up Hits Its Stride

Choosing a Financial Partner

You may recall receiving an email in February announcing the arrival of SELCO Steps Up, a new program that reimagines and expands our approach to community involvement.

Group of SELCO employeesGiven the bigger and bolder approach to giving back, it’s only fitting we went big and bold for  the program launch!

The week of February 20-23, we kicked off SELCO Steps Up with festivities and acts of kindness throughout Oregon. All told, we invested more than $20,000 in direct support of our communities during the week. And to ensure we were meeting the unique needs of the many communities SELCO serves, we created an Ambassador program comprised of team members all over the state to provide hyperlocal leadership and advocacy. This team of two dozen SELCO Steps Up Ambassadors were joined by additional team members to spread goodwill widely.

“SELCO Steps Up is such an exciting program, and because it belongs to everyone, we wanted to start with a celebration that brought our members, team members, and community partners together,” said Olivia Sorensen, Senior Community Development Specialist, who spearheaded the program launch. “The spirit and passion we saw during launch week is just the beginning of what promises to be an impactful journey for all involved.”

SELCO Steps Up picture collage

Clockwise, from left: We offered members sweet treats from local bakeries at all our branches during launch week. Shelby Caraher, Membership & Account Administration Assistant Manager, proudly holds two bags of books that she helped distribute to Little Free Libraries across Salem. Darin Klarr, Albany Branch Manager, poses with items from CASA of Linn County’s wish list. Burns Branch Manager Natasha Gunn hoists a “teacher survival kit” to hand out to teachers at Crane Union High School. Maggy Gonzalez, Rachel Blalack, and Sam Shepard of the Forest Park Branch help clean Leif Erickson trail in Portland.

To kick off the program, there were random acts of kindness, direct support of educators’ classrooms and community partners, and in-branch celebrations. Our hope is that these small and large gestures create a lasting impact (and caused a few smiles as well):

Ambassador Spotlights

Cameron Marsh (pictured, right), a Member Service Representative IV at the West Redmond Branch and a Steps Up Ambassador, shopped for supplies to donate to Bethlehem Inn, an emergency shelter in Redmond and Bend.

"SELCO Steps Up is a very important program for our communities across Oregon," said Cameron, whose personal passion is stepping up for veteran services. "Volunteering has been around since the dawn of time, and we would not be able to thrive without continuing the human tradition of volunteerism. Even small gestures can make big things happen."

SELCO volunteer at Raptor Center

Amber Bodie (pictured, left), Operations Support Associate and a Steps Up Ambassador, delivers donated toys from the Cascades Raptor Center in Eugene after it suffered extensive damage from the ice storm in January.

“SELCO Steps up shows a small gesture can be a memory for a lifetime,” said Amber, who steps up for animal rescue. “The program brings hope, supports dreams, and cements the fact that SELCO cares about our communities.”

The launch of SELCO Steps Up may be in the rearview mirror, but the program is just getting started. Follow our social media channels to see how SELCO Steps Up evolves with the needs of our communities.

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