Community Matters
Annual Community Report 2015

Partnering With Schools

At Community Financial we believe that educating our youth on financial education determines the success of our future. We are proud to support every level of education across northern and southeast Michigan. From scholarships to financial education, we strive to engage students in local schools and teach them good money habits that will last throughout their lifetime.

Community Shares

Started in 1999 as a small donation to celebrate our account growth, the Community Shares program has turned into an annual donation that helps school districts fill gaps in their educational programs. In 2015, our annual Community Shares donation provided $25,500 to help fulfill teacher grant requests for special educational projects. We are pleased to be able to contribute in a meaningful way to our community school districts. Recipients in our northern district included: Hillman Community Schools, Johannesburg-Lewiston Area Schools, Gaylord Community Schools and Atlanta Community Schools. Recipients in our southern district were: Plymouth-Canton Community Schools, Northville Public Schools, Novi Community Schools, and Livonia Public Schools.

Student-Run Credit Unions

Community Financial is proud to partner with Michigan schools districts to help operate student-run school credit unions and expose thousands of students to money management skills. Selected students learn the banking business as credit union tellers, branch managers, marketing representatives, computer operators and accountants. This program allows students to actively participate in our credit union, in the convenience of their own school. We have expanded our presence in northern and southeast Michigan and now host programs in 46 area elementary, middle and high schools. The program gives students a strong comprehension of how to manage their finances. It also exposes them to interviewing prep and what it would be like to work at Community Financial. 

Classroom Presentations

As an additional outlet to educate our youth, our Education Partnership Coordinators continued to teach Junior Achievement and provide classroom presentations about the importance of financial management. Our team members donated over 2,400 hours to local schools in 2015 and presented to over 23,000 students on topics ranging from the importance of saving, to managing your first checking account and establishing good credit. 

Scholarship Program

Over the years of providing scholarships to students who embody the “People Helping People” philosophy we live by at Community Financial, we’ve found ourselves receiving more applications of significantly qualified candidates. In 2015, we awarded 16 students with $1,000 scholarships named in honor of past volunteer and Board Member Margaret Dunning and former General Manager George Lawton. Each year we collaborate with the Community Foundation of Plymouth (CFP) and the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation (AAACF) to award these scholarships to deserving students. We are proud to help make college more affordable for our student members.

"First, I would like to take the opportunity to thank you once again for the funds awarded. They are extremely helpful in helping me achieve my educational goals as I am in my second year at Alma College. Without your financial support, it would be an even greater challenge for me to attend Alma College.  I am an Elementary Education student and this semester I had my first classroom placement in a second grade classroom. I have absolutely loved going to my placement and found it to be a rewarding experience. It makes me excited as I look forward to student teaching and having my own classroom someday!"
- Shannon Kievit, 2015 scholarship recipient