Leading in our communities

We believe in supporting local non-profit and charitable organizations who serve the most vulnerable in our communities. We leverage our financial strength and our social vision, Lead Well, which fosters employee engagement to create capacity in the social sector though knowledge- and skills-based volunteerism.

1,221 employees
used their leadership abilities and professional skills to create capacity for local charities.

1,555 work days volunteered

First West employees spent 11,663 hours leading by helping those in need and using their skills to build our communities.

1,373,487 meals

Feed the Valley and The Full Cupboard—our signature cause programs—generated $457,829 and 43,777 pounds of food, equivalent to hundreds of thousands of meals for British Columbians.

“I’ve packed boxes at the Surrey Food Bank many times, but when I heard that Food Banks BC was looking for a treasurer, I knew I had to raise my hand. It’s fulfilling to know I’ve been able to make a positive impact for them by using my financial and accounting knowledge and skills.”

Mike Cooke, Senior Vice-President, Risk, First West Credit Union shared services

Thanks a million

Thanks a million

With incredible support from our communities, members and employees, Valley First’s Feed the Valley program raised $1 million for local food banks four years ahead of schedule.

“I started volunteering at the local museum by painting some display cases during renovations. When museum staff learned I work at Valley First, they asked me to join their team as treasurer. I had no experience in that, but was interested in helping. It was a steep learning curve—I learned a lot, developed new skills and gave back to the community at the same time.”

Martin Hough, Senior Financial Advisor, Valley First’s Princeton Branch

269 community projects, 2041 employees, 8,375 hours

269 community projects, 2041 employees, 8,375 hours

Since 2007, our Make a Difference Days has been encouraging First West employees to volunteer in their community. Working in partnership with local non-profit agencies, employees are boots on the ground, ready to jump in and support a variety of projects, from sorting and distributing food at local food banks to painting walls and building fences.

“After learning about Soup Sisters from a friend, I knew it would be a great fit for me and would bring together my love for food and helping people. We partnered with Brodo Kitchen and started the Penticton chapter of Soup Sisters to benefit the South Okanagan Women in Need Society. I’ve loved every minute of being able to lead and help develop such an important initiative in Penticton.”

Meredith Birchall-Spencer, Communications Business Partner, First West shared services

First West Foundation

$685,000
granted from the foundation’s 15 endowments in 2016

257

Support from the First West Foundation helped scores of local charities deliver programs and services to help build community resilience and resourcefulness.

Foundation Growth