Vancity and community partners rally to support displaced Ukrainians

Ukrainian Banking Program offers financial and other supports

Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA


TERRITORIES OF MUSQUEAM, SQUAMISH AND TSLEIL-WAUTUTH NATIONS and VANCOUVER, British Columbia, June 03, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Vancity is collaborating with the AMSSA Provincial Service Coordination Table, Government of British Columbia, and local community organizations, including the Ukrainian-Canadian Congress, United Way of BC, and CISSA-ACSEI National Secretariat on Operation Ukrainian Safe Haven, to support thousands of displaced Ukrainians who will be arriving in BC over the next several months.

Vancity’s Ukrainian Banking Program builds on the credit union’s long-running Resettlement Assistance Program for Government Assisted Refugees and has been developed in consultation with community partners to meet the needs of displaced Ukrainians and support their transition to Canada. The program includes no-fee banking services and products, wrap-around supports through settlement agencies and United Way of the Lower Mainland, transportation services through Modo, and tailored supports for entrepreneurs.

“Millions of people have been displaced in Ukraine in the wake of the military invasion of their country and many thousands are coming to British Columbia who need assistance,” said Christine Bergeron, CEO Vancity Group. “Vancity is proud to be part of a wide community response rallying to welcome them and create a safe haven at a time when they need the world’s support.”

“Ensuring that displaced Ukrainians have access to financial services including opening a bank account in BC and Canada is a critical post arrival settlement support. Vancity’s financial service offerings build upon the experiences of previous humanitarian movements, and is an example of an innovative program that displaced Ukrainians as well as other refugees will benefit from as they start their new lives in this country.” – Chris Friesen, Interim co-Executive Director, Canadian Immigrant Settlement Sector Alliance – Alliance Canadienne du secteur de l’établissement des immigrants (CISSA ACSEI) and Co-chair of the National Steering Committee for Operation Ukrainian Safe Haven Post Arrival Phase.

Account features

  • Free and unlimited outgoing wire transfers (electronically transferred money) to Ukraine
  • enviro™ Visa credit card ($1,000 credit limit)
  • Best member rate for Euro and USD cash exchange and purchase (up to $25,000 CAD)   
  • 40 Free Everyday Transactions per month 
  • Free INTERAC e-Transfer transactions
  • Free cheque orders of 50 Vancity personalized cheques 
  • Free official cheques (also known as bank drafts or money orders) 
  • Free US Dollar drafts 
  • $5 off safe deposit box charges
  • A MEMBER CARD debit card (otherwise known as an ATM card)
  • No surcharge or network fees at ATMs displaying THE EXCHANGE® or ACCULINK® logos in Canada, and abroad, ATMs displaying the ACCEL® and Cirrus® logos are also usable with a fee

United for Ukraine Carshare powered by Modo and Vancity
Transportation plays a vital role in providing welcoming support to displaced Ukrainians arriving in BC, and Modo and Vancity Credit Union’s partnership with United Way BC will support the agencies leading resettlement efforts to transport newcomers. Providing staff and volunteers of partnering agencies access to the Modo fleet will create opportunities for extended outreach and more efficient service delivery.

Support for entrepreneurs
Some arriving Ukrainians are experienced entrepreneurs who are eager to start a business as soon as possible. In partnership with the Ukrainian Church in New Westminster, Vancity is tailoring several loan programs to support Ukrainians who want to establish a business in Canada.

Support for workers
Many arriving Ukrainians are highly educated and skilled professionals and want to gain meaningful living wage employment. Through the Back to Work and Foreign Credential Recognition (FCR) Program, Vancity supports internationally trained professionals get back to their professional field or alternative related career field.

Call for volunteers and donations

  • With thousands of Ukrainians expected to arrive in BC in the next several weeks, United Way of BC is calling for compassionate British Columbians looking for volunteer opportunities. Please visit ivolunteer.ca to see how you can support.
  • Members and the public can donate directly to the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal through the Canada Ukraine Foundation.
  • If you have accommodation to offer for those arriving without secured housing, please click here.

Partners
Vancity thanks its many partners who are working to support new arriving Ukrainians. Without the guidance and consultation of the following organizations, these supports would not be possible: AMSSA, The Canadian Immigrant Settlement Sector Alliance, United Way of BC, Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in New Westminster, Association of Neighborhood Houses of BC, Ukrainian-Canadian Congress of BC, and Modo.

Additional information on Vancity’s Ukrainian Banking Program is available in English and Ukrainian here: https://www.vancity.com/about/banking-in-canada/ukraine-account/

In addition to creating the Ukrainian Banking Program, Vancity in February announced it was temporarily waiving wire transfer fees to send money to Ukraine until December 31, 2022. The credit union has also donated $50,000 to the Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal and to local Ukrainian organizations in Canada.

About Vancity

Vancity is a values-based financial co-operative serving the needs of its more than 560,000 member-owners and their communities, with offices and 54 branches located in Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria, Squamish and Alert Bay, within the territories of the Coast Salish and Kwakwaka’wakw people. With $33 billion in assets plus assets under administration, Vancity is Canada’s largest community credit union. Vancity uses its assets to help improve the financial well-being of its members while at the same time helping to develop healthy communities that are socially, economically and environmentally sustainable.

For more information, please visit https://www.vancity.com/about/banking-in-canada/ukraine-account/

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T: 778-837-0394