PORT ORCHARD — Kitsap Credit Union said last week that it has received the designation of Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) by the U.S. Department of Treasury.
Treasury awards the CDFI designation to institutions that are seen to be especially inclusive of all citizens, including those that have economic difficulties, Kitsap Credit Union CEO Shawn Gilfedder said. The designation also will enable the credit union to get access to federal funding to additionally provide financial services to community members in economic need, he added.
“It is important that our members know their money is with an organization that focuses on improving all lives in our community,” Gilfedder said in a corporate news release.
Through their CDFI designation, the credit union will now be able to offer low-cost mortgages for first-time home buyers, loans for small businesses, and strategic loans designed to help members build their credit, the CEO noted.
Following the designation, Kitsap Credit Union said it has begun developing plans for how it will be allocating CDFI grants that focus on serving the underserved populations in their communities, including Native Americans, the elderly and low-income households.