The Weyburn Credit Union (WCU) and the City of Weyburn announced a new multi-year partnership that will see the new Weyburn Recreation and Cultural Centre named the Credit Union Spark Centre. The announcement was made at Saturday night’s drive-in movie fundraiser for the Weyburn Artistic Swimming Club held on the fairgrounds, in a commercial shown prior to each of the movies.
Approved by City Council, Weyburn Credit Union will contribute $1 million to the City over 20 years, securing naming rights for the duration. In the coming months, the WCU brand will be visible on new signage and across all communication platforms.
“When we entered the negotiations with the City of Weyburn last year, our credit union, community and economy was in an entirely different place,” relates Lynn Colquhoun, Board Chair of Weyburn Credit Union, “but we believe in our community; it’s where we live, work and play. We believe in investing in our community to make it better, brighter and stronger. Although our landscape has changed, our beliefs have not. In fact, we feel investing in our community is more important now than ever.”
“We’re very happy about it, because it just fits in with our beliefs and values. It supports the community sport, culture and arts, and it fits in so well. We just felt it fit as we’re trying to make a positive impact for the community. It just all lines up,” said Don Shumlich, CEO of the Weyburn Credit Union.
Colquhoun noted the name stems from the credit union’s logo of a round spark comprised of Ws, which they use in their logo and marketing efforts.
“Even at the board table, we talk about sparking great thing in the community, so there will be a great display of the spark. We’re pretty fond of it,” she said.
In explaining some of the rationale and thoughts of the board around making the decision to spend this level of money, Colquhoun said they reviewed what this can do in the community in terms of impact.
“It won’t take away from member rewards. We’re not pulling money out of one pool to put into another. It’s other money. We’re not reducing our budgets in other areas, like Don’s office isn’t going to be reduced to a hole in the back room, and we aren’t taking away any of the benefits for our staff,” she said. “It’s just something we can do.”
As it’s spread out over 20 years, at about $50,000 a year, Shumlich pointed out this is part of marketing for the credit union, and is a way of giving money back to the community.
“That’s where the benefit is, giving the money back. Hopefully this encourages other projects in giving money back. Weyburn and area is a great place to live, and it’s just going to make it a better place to live,” he said.
He also noted that Weyburn Credit Union is owned by the people who bank with them and WCU has always used its profits for their members’ good.
Colquhoun added that the institution is modeling for other community organizations, some of whom do business with them, and encourages them to look for ways to give back to the community in various ways.
“It can’t always be money, so it might be an event like this, for the Weyburn Artistic Swimming Club,” she said.
“The City of Weyburn is extremely excited for the upcoming opening of the Credit Union Spark Centre in 2021,” said Andrew Crowe, Director of Leisure Services for the City of Weyburn. “The new leisure and arts facility is a major attraction in our community which will provide safe and healthy inclusive opportunities for years to come. We value the strong partnership with the Weyburn Credit Union and are thankful for their decision to invest back into our incredible city.”
The Weyburn Recreation and Cultural Centre (WRCC) is a welcome enhancement to the community. Currently under construction, the WRCC is set to open in September 2021, alongside the Legacy Park Elementary School.
The gathering place will be completely accessible with barrier-free access points to the building and interior features including the art gallery, pottery studio, multi-purpose rooms, indoor track, simulator room, mini gym, multi-use synthetic field, children’s play space and outdoor ice surface.
WCU applauded the City of Weyburn on their forward-thinking vision for the community. Because their vision aligns with the City’s, WCU is proud to partner with the City and rename the multi-purpose sports, culture and recreation facility the Credit Union Spark Centre.