Heritage Palmwoods Community Bank celebrates birthday with $1 million in sight

 The Heritage Palmwoods Community Branch tomorrow (Tuesday, 25 February) celebrates its 8th birthday with news that it will this year hit the $1 million mark in funds given back to the local community.

The branch turns 8-years-old tomorrow and has a day of celebrations planned.

There will be a sausage sizzle breakfast at the branch from 9am and celebrations will continue until 12 noon.

The birthday cake will be cut at 11am by local Sunshine Coast Regional Council Division 5 representative

Cr Jenny McKay – who was there to officially open the branch back in 2006.

Heritage pioneered the community branch concept in Queensland and Palmwoods is a fantastic example of how the model delivers for local people.

The Community Branch is a joint-venture between Heritage Bank and the local community, represented by a company called Palmwoods Community Branch Ltd.

Under the Heritage model, the community company’s share of profits is given back as grants to community organisations, charities and worthy causes. .

Heritage CEO Mr John Minz said Palmwoods was on track to hit the $1 million milestone this year in grants given back to the community.

“Heritage provides true community banking by working with communities to establish a full local banking service, including a Branch Manager, in their town or suburb. That’s particularly valuable where communities feel abandoned by other banks and want to access banking services locally.”



“Importantly profits are shared and the community companies distribute their share of profits back into the community to support charities, sporting clubs and other local organisations.



“The success of the Heritage Palmwoods Community Branch is a great example of what this model can deliver for local people.”



Palmwoods Community Branch Director Mr Craig Agnew said hitting the $1 million milestone was an amazing effort in the small town of Palmwoods.



“We will reach that amount well ahead of our original target of 10 years, thanks to the magnificent support from the local community,” Mr Agnew said.



“The $1 million investment in community grants has resulted in capital works projects of approximately of $2.1 million being completed, which is absolutely fantastic for our region.”

One of the grant recipients is the Compass Institute, the Sunshine Coast charity that provides training, development, employment and lifestyle opportunities for people with intellectual and physical difficulties.

A grant from Heritage Palmwoods Community Branch has helped Compass set up the Wabi Sabi shop in the main street of Palmwoods. The primary goal of Wabi Sabi is to provide retail training for young people with a disability while showcasing their skills and building awareness of their abilities.

Most products sold at the shop are handcrafted by Compass trainees. The food items, condiments and jams are created by the Harvest Kitchen team using organic produce grown on the Compass Farm in Palmwoods. All the seedlings and plants are grown at the Green Thumbs Nursery also located on Compass Farm.

Compass Institute CEP Mr David Dangerfield said the Heritage Palmwoods grant provided the seed money to get the Wabi Sabi concept up and running.

“Without that helping hand to start, doing something amazing like this shop would be impossible,” he said.

“I can’t thank Heritage Palmwoods enough for their support and what that means for the future of young people with disabilities in this community.”

Cr Jenny McKay was also keen to pass on her congratulations

“I greatly appreciate the opportunity to acknowledge the achievements of Heritage Bank in Palmwoods and the huge contribution that the bank has made to the community,” Cr McKay said.



“Residents should feel very proud and confident that their support of this community banking model enriches their community and provides valuable funding that levels of government would not be able to provide.



“Through Local Government I have welcomed opportunities to partner with Heritage Bank to deliver community benefits for our town and residents.”

* Based on a $150,000 loan over 25 years. WARNING: This comparison rate is true only for the examples given and may not include all fees and charges. Different terms, fees or other loan amounts might result in a different comparison rate.