Merrimack Valley Credit Union Hosting Holiday Food Drive, Seeking Nominations for ‘Biggest Heart’ Awards

Merrimack Valley Credit Union's Stephanie Tapia drops off food for for the company's holiday drive. (Courtesy photograph)

Giving Tuesday isn’t until Nov. 29, but the Merrimack Valley Credit Union is already hard at work making sure their communities have a fulfilling holiday season.

In addition to accepting non-perishable food items at their six locations to be donated to Emmaus in Haverhill, the credit union seeks members of the community to honor with their “Biggest Heart” Awards.

The credit union’s Andrea Manseau tells WHAV employees are inspired to give back in part by their President and CEO Peter Matthews, who regularly works with Emmaus.

“Even if you can’t actually get out in the community (to volunteer), you can have that moment of going to the grocery store, buying the items and making sure someone has something extra this time of year," she said. "The holidays mean so much to so many people and to not be able to give something to your kids, your family, or just to yourself this time of year is hard. Giving something to someone else definitely makes us feel good.”

To pay it forward, MVCU will honor eight people who make a difference in the Merrimack Valley.

Manseau and her colleagues are searching for the area’s most impactful teacher, coach, first responder, veteran, home chef, community leader, caregiver and mentor of the arts.

“We are searching for the biggest hearts in the Merrimack Valley across eight different categories and these are people who not only exemplify the category that they’re in, but they give back to their community and have an impact in people’s lives," Manseau said. "These people are making the Merrimack Valley a better place and we’re trying to find those people to give them a little recognition.”

Nominations are accepted online through January and winners, announced in February, will receive $500 for their charity of choice.

To donate to the Merrimack Valley Credit Union’s holiday food drive, visit one of their six branch locations through Nov. 30.

Haverhill Central Plaza Branch: 2 Water Street
Methuen Village Mall Branch: 436 Broadway
Plaistow Ethan Allen Plaza Branch: 24 Plaistow Road
Lawrence Riverwalk Branch: 500A Merrimack Street
North Andover Mall Branch: 350 Winthrop Ave., Rte 114
Seabrook Commons Branch: 700 Lafayette Rd,Unit 103A