Credit unions team up on food drive

LIHUE — Naty Bali said she needed to cash her check so she could shop at the Garden Island Federal Credit Union.

Bali, a customer at the GIFCU, stumbled upon a food drive effort being hosted by Kauai’s credit unions to benefit the Kauai Independent Food Bank.

“This is almost as good as that market where they have the Friday specials,” Bali said. “I buy a lot on the specials. Now, I have to cash my check so I can buy all this stuff.”

Stephanie Shinno of the GIFCU said Friday was the final push by Kauai’s credit unions to benefit the KIFB. This is the fifth year the credit unions have banded together to host a food drive for the KIFB.

“Collectively, our goal was $15,000,” said Charlene Garcia of the GIFCU. “The sales have been pretty good at this flea market and rummage sale so we might just make our goal.”

Garcia said all of the GIFCU associates participated in the sale, many burning the midnight oil to create the special lunches and treats which were available for sale.

“I made all these Filipino lunches based on growing up in my mother’s restaurant,” Shinno said. “And Flo Tazaki made these strawberry bento, which are so romantic.”

Kelvin Moniz, executive director of the Kauai Independent Food Bank, said he appreciates the effort being done by people to collect food and fuel the KIFB programs.

“Every little bit helps,” Moniz said.

Garcia said other credit unions, including the Kauai Community Federal Credit Union, the Kauai Government Employees Federal Credit Union, the Kauai Teachers Federal Credit Union, the Kekaha Federal Credit Union and the McBryde Federal Credit Union, also hosted specials to reach their respective goals.

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