Affinity Plus in Rochester Supports Flood Recovery Efforts

Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union is all about giving back to the community. Recently, the Affinity Plus Rochester branch stepped up to show support to its community, after local food bank partner, Channel One, experienced flooding that impacted its operations.

Channel One Regional Food Bank is a member of Feeding America, which alleviates hunger through innovative and efficient programs and partnerships that feed people and change lives. Channel One operates six programs to serve needs: a food bank, food shelf, mobile pantry, Backpack Program, Nutrition Assistance Program for Seniors (NAPS), and Green Gardens Program. Channel One serves 14 counties across southeastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin.

Heavy rains from the spring and summer minimally impacted the food bank facility, however, its vehicle fleet and freight trucks experienced varying degrees of damage that need to be repaired or replaced. Through Affinity Plus’ Community Investment Funding, the credit union was able to provide financial support to help get the vehicles back on the road to serve individuals and families.  

“While this was an event that adversely rocked our community, the fact that it happened also drew us to learn more about Channel One and its programs supporting so many people in Southeast Minnesota,” said Billie Packer, Affinity Plus Branch Manager for Rochester and Winona. “The result of the flood has created awareness, support, and partnerships we’ll be proud to foster for years to come.”

Virginia Merritt, Executive Director of Channel One, said she is appreciative of Affinity Plus’ efforts and its contributions to help with the damage.  

“We are so grateful for the community’s support and profoundly grateful to Affinity Plus’ swift action to come to our rescue,” said Merritt. “Their gift shows their commitment to supporting our work so we may continue focusing our energy on providing food to the region and people we serve.”

Affinity Plus has worked with Channel One for several years. In early 2019, the credit union expanded its “charity of choice” relationship with Second Harvest Heartland to include the other Feed America food banks (six in total for Minnesota).