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Connecting the Brave

November 6, 2019

Gently used cell phones for donation.On a Mission to Keep Our Troops In Touch

Cell Phones For Soldiers is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to providing cost-free communication services and emergency funding to active-duty military members and veterans. Founded in 2004 by Brittany Bergquist and her brother Robbie, then 13 and 12 years old, Cell Phones For Soldiers relies on cash contributions and donations of gently used cell phones, to provide a lifeline for America’s bravest.


Cell Phones For Soldiers is divided into two separate programs:

Minutes That Matter - provides free calling cards to active-duty military members to connect with loved ones. Since 2004, they have provided U.S. troops with more than 300 million minutes of free talk time and distributed more than 5 million prepaid international calling cards.

Helping Heroes Homes - assists veterans with emergency funds to alleviate communication challenges as well as physical, emotional and assimilation hardships. Since July of 2012, Helping Heroes Home has assisted more than 3,100 veterans and their families with emergency funding.


How can you help?

Starting on November 8th and running through December 8th, our New Hartford, Rome and South Utica branches will be holding a donation drive in support of Cell Phones for Soldiers. All types of gently used cell phones and tablets, will be graciously accepted. There will be donation boxes near the Greeters stations at these 3 branches, where you can drop off any old phone that may be lying around your home.


What types of cell phones and mobile devices can be donated?

Gently used smartphones, are preferred; however, proceeds are generated from the recycling of broken and outdated mobile phones as well. Chargers and accessories are also welcomed to donate.


Interested in making a larger impact?

Visit the official Cell Phones for Soldiers website for other ways to get invlolved with this incredible organization and make a difference in the lives of our active and retired military members.

 

Ryan Misencik honored with Genesis Volunteer Award

September 30, 2019

Ryan Misencik riding a bicycle and posing with Joe Griffo

First Source is pleased to announce that our very own Ryan Misencik received one of two Genesis Volunteer Awards given at the 19th Annual Genesis Group Meeting & Joseph R. Carucci Legacy Awards luncheon. We would also like to congratulate all of the 2019 honorees for their continued efforts and dedication to our community.


Class of 2019 Honorees

George Aney, Eqs.  |  Brian Bogan  |  John Calidonna  |  Jackie Romano
Rev. Dr. Mary Webster  |  Remsen Barn Festival


The Genesis Group is an organization that brings together business and community leaders who are working to improve economic, social and cultural interests, and to foster unity and cooperation within the Mohawk Valley. Their focus is to create a positive impact in our community, a mission that Ryan is certainly familiar with.


About Ryan

Ryan Misencik, a Project Analyst with First Source, is a devoted husband and father, and an avid runner and cyclist. He strives to be a good role model for his daughters by sharing his time and talents, volunteering in a variety of capacities throughout our community. His actions and attitude emphasize how important giving back truly is.


The Ride for Missing Children - Ryan has been a Ride volunteer for 10 years serving in several official positions, including Shepherd, Steering Committee and Leadership Team. Ryan also leads the group of cyclists throughout Ride Day as the Official Pace Shepherd.


The Young Scholars Liberty Partnerships Program - This year Ryan became a mentor for a student in need as part of the Young Scholars program. He enjoys having the ability to provide guidance and introduce his mentee to a world of new opportunities that otherwise they may never experience.

Read more about Ryan’s mentorship experience >


Genesis Group St. Patrick’s Day, Independence Day and RCIL Holiday Parades - Ryan is also an integral part of the Parade Organization Committee for The Genesis Group. He assists with the planning and organization of the full parade event, plus day of coordination and parade line up.


Music for Genesis Events - As a radio and private DJ for over 25 years, Ryan has also donated his skills and services for many Genesis Group events, including Taste of the Mohawk Valley and their annual holiday party.  


Ryan truly enjoys making a difference in our community in any way he can and we are so proud to have him as part of our First Source family. Congratulations Ryan!

 

Think Pink: Together, We Make a Difference

September 26, 2019

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

First Source Federal Credit Union is a longtime supporter of the American Cancer Society. Throughout the month of October we will be "thinking pink" to raise awareness, and educate our employees, Members  and community about breast cancer. 

Efforts will include an employee Jeans dress-down fundraising day, a First Source team of employees, friends and family, participating in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk and an awareness campaign with Roser Communications to bring you the stories of 4 breast cancer survivors throughout the month of October.


Meet the Survivors

Survivor #1 - Cathy Abel
Cathy Abel and her husband Scott are from Ilion. They have 3 children and 3 grandchildren. Cathy is a 3 year breast cancer survivor and credits her yearly mammogram for the early detection of her Stage 0 cancer. She says, “Don’t EVER put off your mammogram, because it can save your life." Cathy has a whole new outlook on life and appreciates each and every day that she is given. Learn more about Cathy's story and hear clips from her interview. >


Survivor #2 - Karyn Urtz
Karyn is from Rome and was diagnosed with Stage 1A breast cancer two years ago. Her mother, a four time breast cancer survivor, passed away in 2006. Because of her family history, Karyn scheduled regular mammograms and credits those tests and her doctor with the early detection. She says "Awareness is the key," and praises her mother's sense of humor as the reason she has been able to deal with her own cancer. Karyn is very thankful for the support she has received from her family and friends, and feels fantastic today! Learn more about Karyn's story and hear clips from her interview. >


Survivor #3 - Terry Decola
Terry is from Utica and was diagnosed with Stage 0 breast cancer back in 2016. Thanks to her routine mammograms, her doctor was able to diagnose her cancer in the very early stages. She went through radiation and is still taking her chemotherapy pill to fight the disease. Despite being a private person, Terry decided to share her story to bring hope and awareness. She says the love, support and positive attitude of her family is what helped her get through it all, and be here today. Terry continues to live life to the fullest! Learn more about Terry's story and hear clips from her interview. >


Survivor #4 - Maryrose Tucker
Maryrose is from Utica and was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer after finding a lump during a breast self-exam. She went through 4 rounds of chemotherapy and 33 rounds of radiation in her fight against breast cancer. Maryrose didn't have time to feel sorry for herself, because everything happened so quickly, but says she couldn't have made it through the ordeal without the love and support of her family. She feels wonderful now, and recommends regular breast self-exams and routine mammograms. Learn more about Maryrose's story and hear clips from her interview. >
 


How Can You Get Involved?

Donate: October 11th is a First Source fundraising Jeans Day for Breast Cancer, when many of our employees with be dressing down and donating to support the American Cancer Society (ACS). You can join our efforts and make a donation to the American Cancer Society in their fight, either directly, or to someone participating in the Walk. Your donation will help to fund groundbreaking research, raise awareness and provide support to those fighting this disease.


Wear Pink: It’s a simple way to show your support and solidarity for all who are at risk for breast cancer: mothers, wives, daughters, granddaughters, friends and loved ones. Friday, October 18th is National Mammography Day, so that’s a great day to wear your pink. Share your photo on social media and become a part of something so much bigger. #NationalMammographyDay


Walk: Register online, to take part in the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk at the Masonic Care Community on Sunday, October 20th. This is a powerful and inspiring opportunity to unite as a community to honor breast cancer survivors, raise awareness about how we can reduce the risk of getting breast cancer, and raise money to help the ACS. The ACS leads the fight against this disease with groundbreaking breast cancer research, information and support 24-7, and access to testing. Every step you take is personal, and together we’re helping the fight against breast cancer. Join us!

 

Savanna Kinderman on the Mentor Program

September 5, 2019

A Young Scholars Program testimonial

So far, what is the best experience you’ve had as a Mentor?

"One of the most impactful moments I’ve have had so far was when my mentee opened up about a passion that she wants to pursue, that she hadn’t shared with anyone yet! That was when it hit me that I could make a difference to help her achieve a goal and make her dream a reality. 

A close second would be when we had our initial “meet and greet”, and I could tell that my mentee was so genuinely thrilled to be a part of this program. She could barely sit still, because she was so excited to get started."

- Savanna Kinderman


Become a Mentor

Becoming and being a mentor is easy, takes very little of your time and money, and may become the most rewarding experience of your life.


Learn more about how to become a mentor in the Young Scholars Program, and how you can help our community.

Learn More
 

Shante Washington on the Mentor Program

September 5, 2019

A Young Scholars Program testimonial

What is the best part about being a Mentor?

"The best part of mentoring to me is being able to be a positive role model in a young teenager’s life, someone they can look up to. Being able to assist and guide their daily life issues, such as preparing them for the real world, discussing ideas for a career they would like to pursue, and furthering their education.

Just being able to share my time with someone, and do the things they like but are unable to do, is enough satisfaction. To continue to be a mentor, but more importantly, a role model."

- Shante Washington


Become a Mentor

Becoming and being a mentor is easy, takes very little of your time and money, and may become the most rewarding experience of your life. 


Learn more about how to become a mentor in the Young Scholars Program, and how you can help our community.

Learn More
 

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