Fundraising 101               Newsletter              About Us              Home


MCU4Kids Blackjack Tournament & Awards

New location - same fun! The CU4Kids committee once again hosted a Blackjack tournament and awards ceremony during the Minnesota Credit Union Network Annual Meeting. The Blackjack tournament and awards ceremony took place Friday, April 25, at the 2014 Annual Meeting's new location; Radisson Blu at the Mall of America.

Dave Engler (left) received a Volunteer of the Year Award, Brad Scholl awarding Dave on the right. Click the photo to see an enlarged version.

Wade Westphal (left) was the 2014 Blackjack “Master”. Kristen Dellich won the second round and played Wade for the title. Rick Rasmusson, of Richfield Bloomington Credit Union won the first match. Wade Westphal represented Rasmusson in the Masters round where he played the second round winner, Kristen Dellich.

Stan Hollen, CEO of CO-OP Financial Services, accepted a patient art award from Children’s Miracle Network Director at Gillette, Darlis Clausen (right). The award recognized CO-OP Financial Services for their 2013 Miracle Match support of Gillette, totaling $50,830. CO-OP Financial Services donated $1.2 million to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals throughout the U.S. in 2013 through the Miracle Match program.

Obstacle mud run coming north of Minneapolis

Support Children's Miracle Network Hospitals at a fun fitness event for the whole family. On May 17, Hard Charge, the televised obstacle mission, will be at Pinehaven farm in Wyoming, Minn. Hard Charge includes a four mile course including over 20 obstacles. Multiple heats offer team or individual events for all fitness levels as well as a teen heat and kids' course. The event will be filmed for a national TV show that airs locally on Fox Sports North.

HARD CHARGE will donate $500 to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, locally benefiting Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare for every group of 25 volunteers on CHARGE Day! Bonus - you get a front row seat to all the action & a bunch of cool, FREE stuff:

- CHARGE Crew t-shirt                                - Beverage token

- Access to post-race party                         - Maybe a lil' bit of mud

Registration for the obstacle mission benefit Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare. Run, walk or volunteer, just don't miss out!

Learn more & sign up at HardCharge or contact Anne at

"Change a Child's Life" coin canisters
CU4Kids now offers coin collection canisters to credit unions free of charge for the Children's Miracle Network. They've also created a web page with resources including suggested Tweets, Facebook postings, articles, and ways to engage your staff, logos, etc. For more information, visit

EVFCU's team takes a polar plunge for Gillette

"We did it," says Roxi Jensen of Embarrass Vermillion FCU. EVFCU formed a team of 9 with a theme of 'Candy Crush Saga' to raise money for Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare. During Hoyt Lakes' Cabin Fever Days, six members of the team took a polar plunge. The temperature was -25 degrees.

EVFCU raised $3,000 in pledges, earning their team 1st place for most money raised. Cabin Fever Days is an annual event in Hoyt Lakes with a variety of entertainment for the entire family. Click the link to see our brave jumpers:

MnCU4 Kids reaches major fundraising milestone

Minnesota credit unions continue to demonstrate their strong commitment to the state and local communities through their fundraising and support of Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare. The Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids committee (MnCU4Kids) raised $202,281 in 2013 for Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare, the Children's Miracle Network-designated hospital in Minnesota.

Additionally, MnCU4Kids eclipsed a major fundraising milestone, reaching $2.5 million in total funds raised since its inception in 1997 through the generous support of credit unions and vendor organizations throughout the state.

MnCU4Kids, a committee of the Foundation, is part of a collaboration of credit unions, chapters, leagues and business partners engaged in fundraising activities that benefit Children's Miracle Network-affiliated hospitals. Throughout 2013, the volunteer MnCU4Kids committee coordinated a variety of fundraisers that engaged credit unions and members in all corners of Minnesota. Individual credit unions also coordinated their own fundraisers that consisted of cookouts, candy sales, casual Fridays and more.

"The tremendous support we receive from the credit unions and companies throughout Minnesota allows committee members to allocate time and effort towards supporting Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare," said MnCU4Kids Co-Chair Dave Engler. "Our committee is just one of the many ways Minnesota credit unions work together for a common good."

MnCU4Kids attributes a significant portion of its fundraising success to CO-OP Financial Services, which provides regular donations through its Miracle Match program.

"We appreciate CO-OP's ongoing support, and I am proud to recognize this long-lasting relationship between Minnesota credit unions and Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare," said Minnesota Credit Union Foundation Chairman Pat Brekken.

Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare is an independent, not-for-profit hospital located in St. Paul, with outreach clinics in Duluth, Burnsville, Maple Grove, Minnetonka. All money raised through the MnCU4Kids program supports Gillette, helping kids with disabilities and chronic conditions. Credit Unions for Kids is a national program, which is endorsed by nearly all 50 state credit union leagues.

"Credit Union for Kids has been a reliable partner for many years," said Darlis Clausen, Children's Miracle Network Manager at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare. "The effort of the committee members and their credit unions provides Gillette stability in giving quality care to our patients."

MnCU4Kids Elects New Leadership

Last month, the Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids committee voted Minnesota Branch Manager at Royal Credit Union Brianne Meszaros into the co-chair position. Meszaros will serve a two-year term. The committee runs elections every other year, replacing a co-chair each year. Meszaros will serve with current co-chair Hiway Federal Credit Union Assistant Vice President of Investment Services Dave Engler. Meszaros has worked in credit unions for 15 years and joined MnCU4Kids in May of 2011.

The seventh annual Bowl-O-Rama will take place on Oct. 23. This event will provide credit union professionals and volunteers the opportunity to raise money for a great cause and have fun doing it.

This midday event includes lunch, three games of bowling and prize drawings, as well as fabulous trophies to the top bowling teams. All proceeds from this fundraiser go to Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare and its clinics around the state, which help kids with disabilities and chronic conditions.

Our 2014 "MENU" to Make Miracles Happen

See our 2014 Bundle Flyer which lists various ways you can make a difference in a local child's life! Last year, Gillette treated children from every county in Minnesota and every state in the U.S.

Updated reporting form now available

To allow for more accurate record keeping and recording of contributions, MnCU4Kids has updated its reporting form. Credit unions who have forms saved can replace it with the new version. Download it here.

CO-OP Financial Services Matching Grant

The CO-OP Financial Services Miracle Match is still available to credit unions making it possible to double your fundraising efforts for MN Credit Unions for Kids. Apply today!

If your credit union's fundraiser has already received a match two consecutive years, it will not be matched for a third consecutive year. Simply add a new component to the event to make it "new" and submit your application for your new event. Also, see other "new" event opportunities through CO-OP Financial Services below.

Launched in 2008, CO-OP's Miracle Match Program is a $1 million philanthropic matching program that encourages credit unions, chapters and leagues to create and participate in local Children's Miracle Network Hospitals (CMNH) fundraisers. When you apply and participate in Miracle Match, the money you raise for kids is matched, nearly doubling your power to save the lives of hospitalized children within your community. CMN Hospitals raises funds for 170 children's hospitals across North America. Funds are used in many ways, such as supporting research and training, to purchase equipment, and/or pay for uncompensated care. Local fundraising is a great way to express community spirit, and build stronger ties with your members, by staging events that involve them to raise more funds for this worthy cause.

Shop for Miracles
CO-OP is supporting Shop for Miracles,a one-day fundraising program to support CMN Hospitals, which will take place on, International Credit Union Day - Oct. 16. Each time members use their credit union-issued credit or debit card on October 16, credit unions participating in the Shop for Miracles program will donate $0.25 or other pre-determined amount to their local CMN Hospital. CO-OP will provide matching funds for approved applications starting at dollar-for-dollar up to $10,000. Visit for member-facing materials which will be available June 1st.

ATM Donations for CMN Hospitals
CO-OP has also teamed up with Credit Unions for Kids to offer CO-OP clients the option to add a transaction to allow members to make a donation at the ATM to CMN Hospitals when they conduct business at participating CO-OP ATM locations. All ATMs directly "driven" (controlled) by CO-OP are eligible for this feature. This would make a great campaign feature for a new fundraising event!

Click here to access the Extranet to open a work order and place a request for this feature.

Meet Michael

Shortly after Michael's birth, doctors diagnosed him with Apert syndrome, an extremely rare condition that affects only about 15 of every 1 million U.S. babies. Characteristics include prematurely fused skull bones, webbed fingers and toes, and a face that appears sunken in the middle. His parents, Mike and Paty, quickly discovered that not just any hospital could treat their son. In their hometown, no medical specialists had experience operating on a young child with Apert syndrome.

Michael needed prompt treatment from an experienced surgeon. Robert Wood, M.D., a craniofacial surgeon at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare, specializes in treating children who have disabilities and complex medical conditions. He was visiting the hospital where Michael was born, and he met with Michael's parents before they brought their son home.

Wood performed Michael's first surgery-a major procedure that expanded and reshaped his skull-when Michael was just 5 months old. Later surgeries separated Michael's fingers and toes. Thanks to his surgeries and treatments at Gillette, Michael is developing normally. His parents say he's a bright, happy child, with a delightfully mischievous personality. And he's always smiling.

"Michael understands that we are all different, but being different isn't what defines him as a person," Mike says. "Because of his positive attitude, he fits in everywhere and is a favorite among his classmates and friends."

Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare Launches New Advertising Campaign: 'Moving Forward'

Moving forward. It's what happens every day for patients at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare. Whether it's a child's first-ever steps after major surgery, a family finding treatment for their baby's rare condition, or state-of-the-art technology helping surgeons correct a complex disorder, the things some call "miracles" Gillette calls, simply, results.

Read the entire article on the 'Moving Forward' campaign on the Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare website.


In November the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals’ Celebration event in Orlando, FL held a Credit Unions for Kids reception. 

The reception was hosted by CO-OP Financial Services. Darlis Clausen, Director of the Children’s Miracle Network department at Gillette, presented Jeff Schwalen with an award for his many years of leadership and support of Gillette through MNCU4Kids.  

In addition to attending the Credit Unions for Kids quarterly Advisory Board meeting at Celebration, Board members attended the Champion’s Medal Ceremony, Champion’s Pin Exchange and an innovative and inspiring “Ignite” Conference.

MnCU4Kids committee

Dave Engler – Hiway FCU • Marlo Hirl – General Mills FCU • Marty Kelly – US Federal CU • Steve Oien – Minnco CU • Steve Ahlness – Greater Minnesota CU • Dick Nesvold – SouthPoint FCU   • Mick Olson – TopLine FCU • Roxi Jensen – Embarrass Vermillion FCU • Brad Larson – Lake State FCU • Marnie Perfetti-Galston – Mid-Minnesota FCU • Megan Primeau – City & County CU • Brianne Meszaros – Royal Credit Union • Darlis Clausen – Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare • Becky Holst – Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare • Becky DeRosia – Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare • Stacie Walker – Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare • Laura Whittet – Minnesota Credit Union Network • Lindsey Evans – Minnesota Credit Union Network


Minnesota Credit Unions for Kids ©2012   Privacy Notice
Site design & maintained by CU*Online.