First Interstate Bank closes early to help out Lincoln nonprofits

Seven First Interstate Bank branches in Lincoln volunteered with 300 other branches across 14 states to help out local nonprofits.
Published: Sep. 13, 2023 at 8:00 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Seven First Interstate Bank branches closed their doors in Lincoln at noon Wednesday. Instead of relaxing on their half-day off, the employees volunteered at nonprofits that were close to their hearts.

This day of good deeds is a part of a company-wide holiday called Volunteer Day.

“We just want to show that we’re a part of the community, that we’re happy to be here, that we want to help in anyway we can- both in the local neighborhood and throughout our footprint with First Interstate Bank,” said Nate Britten, branch manager at the North 27th Street location.

This is the sixth annual Volunteer Day for 300 First Interstate Bank branches across 14 states, but this is the second year Lincoln branches have participated.

Britten estimated that between 50-70 employees celebrated Volunteer Day in Lincoln, although they often volunteer year-round.

Britten’s bank volunteered at the Food Bank of Lincoln. This year, they teamed up with another branch to fill nine boxes with 360 bags of food at the Food Bank of Lincoln.

According to Jason Pauling, the director of corporate partnerships, volunteers saved the food bank $1.3 million last year, and First Interstate Bank was among them.

“Just as a dollar figure perspective, volunteers and so important to what we do at the food bank,” Pauling said. “It’s a steady stream. We have corporations that come in. We have regular volunteers every week.”

Another nonprofit that received help today was Cedar Youth Services, an organization that gives safe places to live for young people who are homeless or leaving the foster care system.

“The organization is responsible for over 1,000 kids in sometimes very desperate situations,” said Jim Blue, president of Cedars Youth Services. “But we focus on the older kids too who may not have as much of a support system.”

First Interstate Bank employees moved furniture into apartments for young adults. The branch manager at 40th Street and Normal Boulevard called the experience “empowering.”

“We moved a giant dresser up three flights of stairs,” said Jasmine Topil-Ertl. “And to hear the communication and to see them all working together is empowering.”

In addition to Cedars and the Food Bank, volunteers also went to other nonprofits like Matt Talbot, Salvation Army, Mourning Hope Grief Center and the White Cane Foundation.

First Interstate Bank will be back open in Lincoln starting tomorrow.