History & Mission

In 2009, the Board of Directors of Sunwest Bank created the Sunwest Bank Charitable Foundation, funded from the Bank's profits. The Board's intention is to contribute annually to the Foundation as the Bank's profitability allows.

The Foundation's mission is to foster charitable giving and support worthy charitable endeavors within the Bank's communities and throughout the world. Its primary focus is assisting poor, needy, and vulnerable populations, especially children. Of particular interest are grants towards food, shelter, housing, healthcare, and other primary needs.

Since its inception, the Foundation has made grants to domestic organizations serving the homeless, abused, hungry, sick and unemployed in Orange County, San Diego County, Flagstaff, and Phoenix.
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International Partner Spotlight: Challenging Heights (Ghana)

In 2010, the Foundation made a five-year, $820,000 commitment to Challenging Heights for the construction and operation of a 60-bed shelter for children rescued from slavery in Ghana. Led by former child slave, James Kofi Annan, Challenging Heights rescues children trapped in slavery, runs a primary school for 500 children (many of them rescued, but others at risk of being trafficked), and advocates at high levels on behalf of Ghana's youth.

In conjunction with the Hovde Foundation, Sunwest Bank sent six employees to work on the construction of this "Hovde House" in late 2011.

See how Sunwest's commitment to giving back is impacting lives in Ghana: