Red Fusion Event Raises $20,000 For American Red Cross

ST. JOSEPH, MI (July 3, 2013) United Federal Credit Union (UFCU) is supporting Red Cross disaster relief and the armed forces through Red Fusion, a fundraising event through the Red Cross of Berrien and Van Buren Counties. Red Fusion took place on Saturday, June, 29, 2013, at the MTec Building in Benton Harbor, Mich. The first of its kind in West Michigan, the event featured original works of art by 25 local artists, along with music, food, and entertainment. UFCU was a corporate sponsor and contributed $2,500 to the cause.

“Recent natural disasters have touched all of us in some way,” said UFCU President/CEO Gary Easterling. “Credit unions are all about assisting people in times of need or hardship. At UFCU, we wanted to show our support by giving to the Red Cross and being part of the event.”

Funds raised at Red Fusion will be used to help those affected by local disasters like fires, floods, and tornadoes, as well as prepare for upcoming and unknown disasters. Funds will also benefit the Services to the Armed Forces programs through the Red Cross.

The artists, selected by a jury of their peers, included professional artists who have exhibited their works throughout the United States. Works of art were displayed and then sold by silent auction. Guests also had the opportunity to be part of the creative process and watch the artists onsite as they created their designs. Additional pieces were donated by participating artists and sold to raise funds.

“Our volunteers, patrons, and business leaders make these events successful,” said Chapter Executive for the American Red Cross of Berrien and Van Buren Counties, Breeze Ettl. “We salute all of our artists, ambassadors, and corporate donors who made Red Fusion a striking and impactful community gathering.”

The Red Cross is especially grateful to the approximately 200 guests who attended. Funds raised before and during the event brought in a net of approximately $20,000.

“With recent disasters like the Oklahoma tornadoes, and even the flooding we saw here in Michigan, many people are hearing more about the Red Cross and seeing how we help locally, nationally, and even globally. Funds raised through Red Fusion will allow us to prepare for, and respond to, disasters like these and support those serving our country through the military,” added Ettl.

UFCU is also proactive when it comes to being there for members in need. Easterling reiterated, “Supporting our communities, even those we don’t know personally, are guiding principles at UFCU.” With more than 23 locations nationwide, each UFCU branch reaches out to help make their communities a better place.

For more information on how get involved with the American Red Cross, visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

About UFCU
United Federal Credit Union has served its Members since 1949 by helping them to build a sound financial future. UFCU consists of more than 118,000 Member/owners worldwide, and manages assets in excess of $1.5 billion. Its corporate offices and main branch are located in St. Joseph, Mich., with additional branches in Arkansas, Indiana, Michigan, North Carolina, Nevada, and Ohio. UFCU has been named the Michigan Credit Union League Outstanding Credit Union of the Year 2013.

About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, visit or @RedCross on Twitter.

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