Friday, January 20, 2017

MAKE NICE & HELP STAND UP AGAINST BULLYING

To celebrate Anti-Bullying Pink Shirt Day on February 22 we're encouraging all our employees, directors, community partners and members to wear pink and join the fight against bullying.


This year's theme is "Make Nice". We all have the capacity to be kind and compassionate, and this slogan acts as a friendly reminder that no matter what our differences, being nice is always a choice worth making!

Learn more about how you can get involved and show your support at PinkShirtDay.ca.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

KS COMMUNITY FOUNDATION HELPS GRANT CHRISTMAS WISHES

‘Tis the season of giving… and giving back, and the Kootenay Savings Community Foundation has the spirit! The Foundation recently helped grant wishes for fifteen community groups by awarding $37,700 in new grants, along with a donation of $30,000 to be shared between eight locally-operated community foundations.

To see a full list of all the diverse and dedicated organizations benefitting from this latest round of funding, click hereMore information about the Kootenay Savings Community Foundation, including details on how to apply for funding, can be found online at www.kscu.com/Community.


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

FINANCIAL LITERACY: Setting Financial Goals

Submitted by Maria Kruchen, Kootenay Savings MoneyWorks

When it comes to personal finance, too many people wander aimlessly with very little awareness how their spending habits today will affect their future.  Setting goals is very powerful and rewarding simply because it sets a foundation for future success and a strategy to achieve it.


Many people skip this important step in their path to financial independence or retirement.  Some make an attempt to set goals but they may not do it properly.  Skipping goal setting can certainly still lead to success but maybe success by chance instead of choice.  On the other hand, setting goals can increase the likelihood of success because it starts a plan.  Remember the old saying “People who fail to plan, plan to fail?”
One of the challenges in the world of personal finance is it’s such a big space.  Financial planning can mean so many different things, such as:
  • Debt Management – How to reduce, manage and pay down your debts like mortgage, credit cards, lines of credit. Which ones should you tackle first?
  • Saving Money – How much should you save?  Is it better to use RRSPs or TFSAs?  When do you have enough?
  • Tax Planning – It’s not how much you make that counts but rather how much you keep after tax that makes all the difference.
  • Retirement Planning – When do you want to retire?  Can you retire?  Do you have a plan for retirement?
  • Estate Planning – Do you have a will?  An enduring power of attorney?  Have you thought about what will happen if you die or become disabled?
  • Risk Management - Are you protected from financial disaster? Do you have enough life insurance or disability coverage?
  • Investing – Do you know what you are investing in?  Do your investments line up with your goals? 
  • Saving for Children’s Education – Are you utilizing RESPs?  Have you looked at other ways to save?

Take a snapshot of where you are right now. Recognize your areas of strength and weakness and establish your goals around them.

Develop an action plan; goals cannot be met without action.  It may be easier to break down your goals into smaller milestones and make adjustments as necessary.  Achieving goals starts with finding a balance between setting goals that can be accomplished while still allowing you to live the life you want right now.

What is really important to you? Do your goals match your values? Is building up a savings account important or is paying down debt more important to you? Your goals belong to you and no one else. Ensure they reflect what you want, not your neighbor, coworker or extended family members.

And remember, it’s never too late or too early to start planning.

Friday, November 25, 2016

2017 COMMUNITY CALENDAR: Kootenay Kids Celebrate Canada

See tomorrow’s artistic talent today… in our 2017 Kids’ Community Calendar!

Each year, in partnership with local elementary and middle schools, we produce our very own community calendar featuring artwork from students across the Kootenays. The quality of the artwork year after year is always exceptional; making the task of paring down the mountain of entries we receive to the ones we feature in the calendar quite a challenge. 


In honour of Canada’s 150th birthday in 2017, the theme for this year is Kootenay Kids Celebrate Canada We asked students and teachers to show why they think Canada is great – the wildest wildlife, the coolest glaciers, the friendliest flag - and almost 1400 students from 28 schools shared with us why they are proud to be Canadians!  As a thank-you for participating in the program, all eligible schools receive $500 to put towards art supplies, field trips and other enrichment activities.  The featured artists are also awarded a special memento to showcase their winning piece of art.

We look forward to continuing our calendar program for years to come.  The quality of the calendar would not be the same without the talented young artists and hardworking teachers that live in our communities.