125 North Fulton St. Ithaca, NY 14850
Phone: (607) 273-4611
Toll Free: (877) 273-AFCU      Contact

Community Programs

More than a financial institution, Alternatives' mission is to build wealth and create economic opportunity. We do this by offering education and asset building programs.

Business CENTS (Community Enterprise Networking and Training Services) is our small business development program offering education, counseling and support services to micro-entrepreneurs.

Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) An IDA is a special matched savings account designed to assist individuals with low to moderate income on their path toward asset ownership through matched savings and financial education. Participants in the IDA program may save toward the following asset goals: higher education, first home purchase and small business.

Money Wise is a seven week course that provides people with the tools to confront financial issues in their lives. Topics covered include: income and debt, expense tracking, setting and saving toward goals, practical economics, record keeping, insurance, predatory lending, establishing and repairing credit, conscientious consuming, and investment options.

Money Matters 
is a series of specialized workshops focusing on various financial topics.  

Free Tax Preparation Free tax preparation service for individuals and families with a modest income. Volunteers help tax filers receive their maximum available tax credit.

Student Credit Union Financial education and savings programfor school-aged children and youth in Tompkins County.

Community Partnership Lending (CPL) is a way to partner with non-profits to expand lending to their underserved clients.

Investment Opportunities for those interested in supporting Alternatives with market rate investments or to help even more, below market rate investments.

The Livable Wage Study shows how much money is needed to live in Tompkins County. The study provides a benchmark for local employers and employees.

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Joe Nolan, Home Green Home

My family's credit union has been Alternatives since '96; We liked the mission, and who could resist banking in a converted house? In 2005 I started thinking about a retail start-up called "Home Green Home" that would sell healthy and eco-conscious home furnishings and renovation supplies. The Business CENTS class helped me to understand and develop the elements of a business plan, and set me on the path to taking the big leap.

At every stage, I've felt well supported by Alternatives' friendly staff. From one-on-one consultation to business banking and credit needs, I've received quick, helpful service at Alternatives. We always look to partner with organizations that share our values, and Alternatives fits the bill.


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