Sunflower Bank Gives Back 3

Bank Sponsors Big Brothers Big Sisters and Youthrive

Sunflower Bank is a proud sponsor of Big Brothers Big Sisters and Youthrive, both local charitable organizations with a focus on giving back

“Our locally-based banking efforts involve other community-focused charitable organizations whose goals align with ours,” Eric Comeau, metro Kansas regional president of Sunflower Bank, says.

Big Brothers Big Sisters’ mission is to create and support life-changing friendships to children in need.

Sunflower Bank’s involvement began in 2016 with their sponsorship of Step Up Big with Eric Hosmer. Tiffany Bruce, director of development at BBBS, says their partnership was perfect timing.

“When we started working with Sunflower Bank, they were looking to make a big impact on the community,” she says. “It was perfect timing because we were creating a really cool partnership with the Royals and Eric Hosmer. They jumped right in as the presenting sponsor of the campaign which asked the public to step up and pledge per double that Hosmer hit during the season. This campaign has not only created awareness for BBBS but has been a great fundraiser that allows us to serve more kids.”

Since then, Sunflower Bank has worked side by side with BBBS to develop an engaging curriculum to teach about money and finances. Chandra Clark, external partnerships and post-secondary programming manager, works with Steven Coleman, match activities coordinator, to develop financial classes.

“We saw that our students were in need of financial literacy. Because Sunflower had already been such a generous corporate partner, we asked if they would consider leading a series of financial literacy workshops,” Clark says.

They partnered to develop a curriculum that’s both educational and engaging, successfully launching the program in October with elementary-aged children with plans to expand these courses to middle and high school students.  

“What makes Sunflower Bank so special is their employees. They care and want to make an impact on kids in need,” Bruce says. “They immediately jumped in to support the mission. They’ve become ‘bigs,’ event participants, fundraisers, and they donate their time to provide financial training to our ‘littles.'”

Sunflower’s involvement with Youthrive, an organization that supports young adults aging out of foster care, started in August. Youthrive helps children with life skills, including setting goals and striving to achieve those goals by instilling the thought process and discipline needed to save money. Youthrive then provides matching donations to those reaching their financial goals.   

“Youthrive is partnering with Sunflower Bank to offer individual development accounts for youth transitioning out of foster care,” Tim Gay, founder and executive director, says. “Through this program, a youth’s savings are matched to accelerate their ability to purchase a used car or help with costs associated with housing, employment or education.”

Sunflower’s involvement goes beyond dollars.

“Youthrive needed a bank that could help with their growth,” Comeau says. “It started with us working internally to create a savings account that could be used in their program to help their clients set goals and save money. As we saw the impact Youthrive had with former foster kids, we couldn’t help but do more. We’ve made them part of our current campaign to help raise money and awareness of local charities.  We’ve made a donation to help with their funding. Our teams here and in Wichita are beginning to get involved as family supporters and potentially community board members.”

Now through December 31, Sunflower Bank is featuring their “It feels good to do good” checking account promotion to continue growing these local charities.

“It allows our customers to designate a local charity that we will support with a donation in early 2018. We will make a donation to both Youthrive and Big Brothers Big Sisters and our customers essentially choose the amount,” Comeau says.

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