March 3, 2024 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Longview Bank helps area schools

Longview Bank is helping local schools.


The bank donated $2,500 to eight school districts.


Shiloh, Villa Grove, Unity, Heritage, St. Joseph Grade School, St. Joseph-Ogden High School, Prairieview-Ogden and Oakwood received donations from the bank.


“The eight schools were chosen because they are districts within the communities our branches serve,” said Michelle Barkley, Longview Marketing Director.


The bank has branches in Sidney, Camargo, Newman, Villa Grove, Ogden, Royal, and St. Joseph.


The bank is a member of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago. The FHLB offered a COVID-19 relief program consisting of grants and zero-rate advances to support all of its member institutions and the communities they serve through the pandemic.


“Longview Bank chose to participate in this program,” Barkley said. “Through our partnership with FHLB the total amount donated to the schools in our communities was $20,000.00.”


Barkley said the schools have been shocked, grateful, thankful and thrilled with the donations.


“Working on this donation and delivering the checks to the schools has been such a rewarding and educational experience for me,” she said. “I loved going to the districts and learning about each school’s individualized program and even received a few tours of rooms that these programs are run out of.”


Barkley said the bank realizes the current pandemic has been difficult on everyone but the bank remains committed to supporting its customers and communities.


“We are a local, friendly, neighborhood bank and we focus on supporting and investing in our communities,” she said. “There isn’t a better way to do that than by reaching out and getting involved with the school districts.”

The money donated to each school will specifically go towards that particular school’s food program or supply program for the students and families in need.


SJO is using all $2,500 for their Stop N Go program, which allows students to drop in anonymously and selected foods, personal hygiene items, supplies or clothing.


Villa Grove has a program called Snack Packs, in which actual High School students enroll in the class, and they are in charge of purchasing, packaging and delivering the meals to the classrooms for students in need.
One of the schools is using the funds to pay for reduced lunch students lunches.


Another district is using the money to provide free milk to all the elementary students in the morning.


“If we helped lessen the burden on the students and families by providing a little extra support, this is considered a great success,” Barkley said.

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