For 30 years, Valley Lutheran High School used double-wide trailers for its students in Phoenix, Arizona. That changed in 2016 when the school realized its dream to build permanent classrooms.
Business manager Alyssa was instrumental in introducing the school to Thrivent Credit Union, where she is a longtime member. She had a conversation with the Treasury Management team about funding an expansion at the school.
"The credit union visited our school and could see the ministry we're doing in central Phoenix," Alyssa says. The resulting loan made it possible for Valley Lutheran to add a two-story building with 14 classrooms adjacent to the school's gymnasium.
"With the credit union, it was a relationship from the start," Alyssa says. "They walked us through the paperwork required to fund the builder, and there was no 'us against them' like we could have experienced with other loan officers."
Valley Lutheran shares a parcel of land with Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church and partners with its members for worship and other activities. Plans are underway to convert an open-air courtyard between the buildings into a lunch area for students.
"We liked that the interest rate from the credit union was a fixed rate for construction loans for nonprofits like us," Alyssa says. "The big banks charge too many fees, and we like to be good stewards with our students' money."
Finding many solutions from one source
Alyssa finds herself wearing many hats at the school. "When new teachers ask me for advice on money topics, the first thing I do is recommend the credit union for its online banking app and no ATM fees," she says. "Get your life started out right, get on track early and God will provide."
Mission expansion is our goal
Joel Bohnenstingl of Thrivent Credit Union works very closely with every school and nonprofit organization that seeks funding for projects large and small. "It is our mission to help organizations carry out their mission," he says. "We are successful when they are successful."
Students, teachers and administrators at Valley Lutheran High School are grateful for that mission. Executive principal Bob Koehne says, "Thrivent Credit Union allowed us to fulfill the dream we had for many years of a new academic building on our campus."
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