A holistic approach to well-being
Well-being is a measure of how satisfied you are with your life as a whole. It means feeling good about where you are, not just financially, but physically and mentally as well.
With Member well-being as our guiding principal, we have a role to play that goes beyond financial services. In cases where we can’t be experts, we’ll partner with supporting organizations to fulfill that role. By taking a holistic approach to well-being, we can build stronger, more resilient communities.
Managing stress and building resilience
Stress doesn’t differentiate by gender, ethnicity or geography. We can’t eliminate it, but as a partner, we can work with our communities to identify tools and services to help manage stress more effectively.
Planning and thinking ahead — writing a strategy, and mapping out the possibilities.
For Meridian, this means partnering with organizations who are experts in their field; who offer broad-based support for our communities, locally, provincially, or nationally. It also means supporting organizations who help individuals move forward in their lives.
Learning the skills that can help you navigate through stress and adapt when plans change.
For Meridian, this means funding community organizations that deliver critical programs, services, or support. This also means offering a suite of digital tools that can help everyone become more resilient.
Look at stress in a broader way, try to focus on what is within your control, and recognize that time is a powerful tool.
For Meridian, this means investing in thought leadership, research, and promoting programs in the broader community; drawing attention to the work others are doing to build resilience in their communities.
Financial resilience is about more than the money in your account. It encompasses how you feel about your finances and your future. It’s the confidence that comes from knowing you’re making good financial decisions for yourself and your family. You have a plan in place, you’re prepared for unexpected challenges, and you have the perspective to understand that you’re doing the best you can.
What if I can’t afford a home?
Managing through difficult times is challenging when you don’t have a solid foundation to work from. For many Ontarians, housing security has become an obstacle to becoming more financially resilient. Through partnerships with not-for-profit organizations such as Trillium Housing and Options for Homes, we’re bringing innovative solutions to our Members, and making home ownership a reality for more Canadians.
Meridian also actively funds organizations that promote housing affordability and security in our communities through our Good Neighbour Program.
Helpful tools and resources
How often do we spend thinking about our mental health? Emotional and mental resilience is critical to our overall well-being. Our mindset plays a key role in our ability to cope with unexpected challenges and recover from adversity. Admitting that sometimes we need a little help is a sign of strength, not weakness.
What if I could cope more effectively?
Being part of a supportive community can do wonders for your mental health. Surrounding yourself with people who you trust, and who will empathize and understand what you’re experiencing is important.
Meridian actively funds organizations that promote mental well-being in our communities through our Good Neighbour Program. We’ve also partnered with several organizations that support social connectedness and mental health, including HelpAge Canada, Capitalize For Kids and Pathstone.
Social isolation and loneliness affect more than one million older Canadians. HelpAge Canada works to improve the quality of life for vulnerable seniors, offering a range of services to keep seniors nourished and socially connected. Learn more about HelpAge Canada.
A staggering 70% of mental health challenges begin in childhood and affect roughly 1 in 5 children and youth in Ontario. Capitalize For Kids works with child and youth mental health organizations across Canada, identifying opportunities to increase the capacity of their existing services. Learn more about Capitalize for Kids.
For parents of a child is struggling with mental health issues, knowing where to go for help is critical. In partnership with Pathstone, Meridian’s “Fill the Pig, Feel Better” campaign has raised over $130,000 for children’s’ mental health.
“As a lead agency for the province of Ontario, Pathstone Mental Health is engaged in bigger conversations and action plans to identify gaps in the children’s mental health sector, province-wide. Our commitment to Niagara means that families across the Region will have the best mental health care possible, at no cost. Our continuous partnership with Meridian Credit Union allows us to grow our programs to ensure kids and families are able to reach us, the moment they need to. The power of Meridian and their people is truly at the heart of this campaign’s success, and our community is better for it.”
Kim Rossi, Director of Philanthropy & PR, Pathstone
Tools and resources
When we talk about physical well-being, there are many places our minds can go. We might consider building endurance for a 10K run or improving our diet to ward off illness. We might seek out the information and resources needed to take better care of ourselves and our families. Helping Members and communities become stronger and healthier is part of our commitment to putting their well-being first.
What if my family could live a healthier life?
Physical resilience is your body’s ability to adapt to physical challenges, maintain the stamina to continue, and recover quickly. When the difficult physical “what ifs” happen in life, having the necessary supports in place is critical.
Meridian actively funds organizations that promote physical well-being through our Good Neighbour Program. We’ve also partnered with several organizations that support physical health, including Wellspring Niagara, and Food4Kids Ontario.
Wellspring, Niagara’s only cancer support centre, offers free, supportive programs for patients, families and caregivers living with cancer.
Through our partnership with Food4Kids Ontario, we’re helping kids get nutritious meals to support their health and growth.
“We are grateful to Meridian for providing the gift of time and financial support. This support enabled us to add 800 additional children into our program -- 800 children who will no longer worry about how and when they will have food. We are grateful to all at Meridian for walking alongside us, as we strive to ensure no child in our community will go hungry.”
Lena Basford, Executive Director, FoodForKids Ontario
Tools and resources
Investing in our communities
Meridian financially supports more than 400 community organizations each year. These are organizations committed to making their communities better places to live and work – partners who take a holistic approach to well-being by focusing on personal finance, housing security, and physical and mental health.
Employee giving and volunteering
Our employees show their commitment to community by fundraising, donating, and volunteering for the causes they care about.
To encourage continuous giving, we match our employee contributions up to $1000, and provide up to $500 in volunteer rewards to all employees. These dollars are directed to over 400 community organizations across Ontario annually.
In partnership with Fintech Cadence, Meridian employees provide skills-based mentorship and support to up-and-coming fintechs; startups dedicated to improving the financial health of Canadians. Learn more about Fintech Cadence.
Developed by CMHC and Volunteer Canada, Meridian is partnering in a pilot that will connect affordable housing organizations with the skills and guidance of volunteers from the business community. Launching in Fall 2021, affordable housing organizations will benefit from expert insights to support their goals, while Meridian employees benefit from new perspectives on affordable housing as a foundation for thriving communities.