Article by Jim Baker
In its efforts to engage with the central Texas community, Amplify Credit Union has long stressed involvement with local charitable organizations, especially those that emphasize improving the lot of the less fortunate. To encourage its team members to get involved, Amplify allows them 40 hours of paid time per year to dedicate to their favorite volunteering activities. Of course, many team members go above and beyond this allowance, giving their time and money to a number of worthy causes in and around Austin. In this, the first of what will be an on-going series, we look at one such Amplify team member whose volunteer work has truly made a difference.
One sure way to be an effective volunteer is to put your time where your talents lie. For Terry McCoy, Senior Training Specialist with Amplify Credit Union, his expertise in the areas of personal finance and planning home renovations have made him ideally suited to improve the lives of those looking to get a foothold on the climb toward a decent life.
Terry’s passion for helping people with their finances has made him a valued team member since joining Amplify in 2000 and it has also made him ideally suited for his work with Austin’s Foundation Communities for the past five years where he facilitates their money-management course, which is designed to teach low-income families to learn to maximize their resources.
“I teach people how to budget and track their finances – something they’ve never done before,” said Terry. “I have them set goals for themselves, such as fixing their credit or buying a house, then I work with them to give them the tools to make those goals become reality.”
Foundation Communities does more than provide affordable housing in a clean, green and very livable environment. They also offer instruction in health matters, English as a second language and have dozens of volunteers like Terry who do credit counseling and money management coaching to any Travis County resident – not just those who live in their facilities.
“I believe in what they do,” said Terry. “This is not a traditional handout situation. Instead, the participants are put on a life-changing path.”
For his efforts, he was named Financial Volunteer of the Year two years ago.
Terry’s passion for renovating homes served him well when he was the project manager on Amplify Credit Union’s participation in the Austin American-Statesman's Season for Caring initiatives.
In that program families in need were chosen to have their homes returned to livable condition. They were sent to a hotel for two days while a team of volunteers from Amplify – as well as trade professionals who volunteered their time and materials – did deep cleaning, painting, decluttering, organizing, appliance replacement, and general repairs as needed. And it was Terry’s task to coordinate the efforts of all these people. You can read more about those stories on the Austin American-Statesman's site:
- 2013 Season for Caring: "Amplify workers make Ethel Black’s home more homey"
- 2012 Season for Caring: "A fresh start for family after home makeover"
- 2012 Season for Caring: "Credit union employees overwhelm Season for Caring recipient"
- 2011 Season for Caring: "Christmas brighter for Jackson family after Amplify Credit Union employees repair home"
- 2011 Season for Caring: "James Ferguson's best day: a remodeled apartment and bowling"
Want to know more about volunteering with or donating to Foundation Communities here in Austin? Here are some ways you can get involved with Foundation Communities.