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Self-Help Federal Credit Union

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Welcome to
Lower Valley Credit Union
in Washington

On January 1, 2021, Self-Help Federal Credit Union welcomed 18,500 members and 47 staff of Lower Valley Credit Union (LVCU) to the Self-Help family. Warm greetings to our new members in Washington state! We are delighted to be serving you.

Lower Valley Credit Union was started in 1952 in a Catholic church basement by 25 charter members who deposited $5 each. The founders created the credit union to serve immigrant and rural families in central Washington state. Lower Valley has historically served members through six branches, located in Sunnyside (headquarters), Yakima, East Wenatchee, Pasco, Grandview and Prosser.  

We are honored to join with Lower Valley to continue their longstanding mission. We plan to bring higher savings rates and more home and small business loans to LVCU’s service areas. The organization now operates as Lower Valley Credit Union, a division of Self-Help Federal Credit Union.

Helping Job Seekers 
and Making Milwaukee Safer

Employ Milwaukee

At a time when many jobs have disappeared during the pandemic, the services of Employ Milwaukee in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, are needed more than ever. Employ Milwaukee is the county’s local workforce development board, a dedicated group that helps provide job training, talent development and job placements. However, when COVID-19 struck, the board was at risk of losing its own staffing. A Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan has made a big difference—not only to Employ Milwaukee, but also to the larger community. 

After completing a very productive year in 2019, Employ Milwaukee went into 2020 expecting another strong performance. Then the pandemic struck. On March 16, 2020, the county of Milwaukee called for a county-wide lockdown. That also happened to be the first day of work for Chytania Brown, who had just been hired as the new President/CEO for Employ Milwaukee. 

Ms. Brown had about five minutes to think, and then she needed to act. The organization’s main concern was to continue service to the community, connecting job seekers with employers, no matter what. When she thinks back on it, she remembers, “I didn’t have time to plan and create a strategy on what to do; I said to myself, ‘just do it!’”

Among the many actions Ms. Brown took was applying to Self-Help Federal Credit Union for a PPP loan. Today, as Ms. Brown and her Employ Milwaukee team of 54 look back on 2020, they are proud of what they were able to accomplish despite the obstacles posed by COVID-1. The PPP loan helped the organization in a number of ways by allowing them to:

  • Keep their entire staff on the payroll
  • Keep staff safe by ensuring they had necessary equipment to work from home
  • Offer remote training and counseling to hundreds of job seekers
  • Conduct a drive-thru job fair
  • Place 500 youth in summer jobs

This year Employ Milwaukee is continuing their mission in partnership with other local agencies to provide urgently needed services during COVID. They are training, employing and deploying more than 100 people to take on paid jobs to serve local residents in need at community organizations, churches, shelters, isolation facilities and other public health staging areas. The jobs include distributing public health information and resources, delivering medicine, food and other supplies and assisting in contact tracing.

Thank you, Employ Milwaukee, for all the great work you do, and for being a Self-Help member!

Updated Seaway Chatham
Opening Doors Soon

Newly renovated Chatham home of Seaway

We’re excited to announce that the newly renovated Chatham home of Seaway, a division of Self-Help Federal Credit Union, will re-open soon! Seaway’s Chatham branch, located on Chicago’s South Side, is scheduled to open again in May. 

Since its founding, Seaway has embraced a mission of social justice and economic equality. Established in 1965 to counter discriminatory lending practices on the South Side, Seaway now continues that mission of providing fair financial services and products to the South Side’s Black community through a $14.2 million investment in the renovation of its historically significant headquarters on 87th Street. 

The updated building will include over 9,000 square feet of retail and office space; over 5,000 square feet for our partner tenant Neighborhood Housing Services; more than 7,000 square feet of tenant space on its second floor; and a high-quality community meeting facility in its basement. 

This renovation will allow Seaway to continue its 50-year commitment to the South Side in multiple ways. It will continue providing critical financial resources for local homeowners and businesses through loans and affordable banking. It will also share the new space with nonprofit and small business tenants who are providing local employment and essential community services. And it will provide high-quality meeting facilities for community partners—facilities that are often scarce in this area. 

We look forward to seeing our Seaway members at the updated branch in May! A festive Grand Re-Opening will be scheduled at a later date.  


  • It’s tax time, and free tax preparation is available for qualified taxpayers. To find a location in your area and see if you qualify, click here or dial 2-1-1.
  • We’ve expanded our footprint in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with two new locations: Midtown at 5630 West Fond Du Lac Avenue and Southgate at 3340 S. 27th Street. The original branch at 2102 W. Fond Du Lac Avenue is no longer open, but the ATM is still available.
  • Would you like to improve your credit score or better manage your debt? Or just receive a financial "check-up" and create a plan for a strong financial future? Call our partners at GreenPath and speak with a certified counselor for free at 877-337-3399. These free financial coaching services are available to all our members and their families.
  • March is Women’s History Month. To learn more about women in our history and see some fantastic images, click here.
  • Check out our new home page! We have a new look that will make it easier than ever to find what you need on our website.
  • Career Opportunities. Do you like what we do at Self-Help Federal? Interested in joining our team or know someone who might be? Click here for a list of our current job openings.

Our mailing address is:
Self-Help Federal Credit Union
1970 Broadway, Suite 350
Oakland, CA 94612

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