Disney’s Great CSR Example


Despite your first thoughts: For The Walt Disney Company, it’s not all about having fun, and creating memories for families and kids. It’s also about acting responsibly, and corporate social responsibility is an integral part of their brand.

mickey“Our efforts to be a good corporate citizen have a direct impact on our financial strength, as well as our reputation as one of the most trusted and admired companies in the world,” commented Chief Financial Officer Jay Rasulo in the 2014 Disney Citizenship Performance Report.

To Disney, citizenship also means motivating others. The company believes that the example set by its more than 180,000 employees is nothing compared to the impact it can have when it inspires the millions of kids and families it reaches every day to take action and make a difference.

Three guiding CSR principles

Disney works to embed citizenship into all its daily decisions and actions, guided by three core principles:

1. Act and create in an ethical manner and consider the consequences of decisions on people and the planet. This includes not just ethical conduct, but also responsible content, environmental stewardship, respectful workplaces and a responsible supply chain.

  • disneyheroOne recent accomplishment: In 2012, Disney launched Heroes Work Here with an initial goal to hire more than 1,000 veterans by 2015, and then made a commitment to hire an additional 1,000 veterans. As of October 31, 2014, the company had hired more than 3,800 veterans in 31 months.

2. Champion the happiness and well-being of kids, parents and families – Help make healthier living fun and accessible, and strengthen communities around the world through strategic philanthropy.

  • In 2014, Disney gave nearly $87 million in cash donations to nonprofit organizations and schools. It continued its more than 50 years of support for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, adding a new sponsorship for the National Youth of the Year program, and investing in the club’s Great Futures campaign so it can serve more members, more often.
  • Donating 18 million books to organizations for children in need and encouraging story telling was their goal. By the end of 2014, Disney had donated more than 23 million books in two years.
  • mickey_check-iconMickey Check at all their table and quick serve restaurants in domestic parks and resorts, including Disney Cruise Lines, makes it easier to identify nutritious choices. (BTW, Disney was the first major media company to establish nutritional guidelines for its brand and characters in 2006.)

3. Inspire kids and families to make a lasting, positive change in the world. This involves nurturing creative thinking skills for kids as well as connecting them to nature to build lifelong conservation values.

Click to view full size

Click to view full size

  • In 2014, Disney inspired kids and families to take 3.7 million actions, ranging from pledging online to protect the planet and volunteer in local communities, to supporting programs raising thousands of dollars, to unlocking donations to deserving nonprofits around the globe.
  • Disney exceeded its goal to connect 35 million kids and families with nature experiences by 2015. About 26 million of these experiences were through its theme parks and resorts, and the other 12 million came from grants to organizations which get kids and families involved with nature. In two years, Disney connected more than 38 million kids and families with nature.

Setting and measuring results

In 2012, Disney published measurable targets to track its citizenship performance. The company offers detailed reporting on its progress regularly and in its annual Citizenship Performance Summary.

Consistently ranked near the top of the annual list of the World’s Most Reputable Companies, Disney earned the #1 spot last year (sharing top honors with Google). The 2014 list, published by Reputation Institute, a leading reputation management consulting firm, evaluated 130 companies through an online survey with more than 55,000 consumers across 15 markets around the globe.

The Walt Disney Company may be an international and large family entertainment and media enterprise with five business segments (media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media), but their commitment and approach set a great example and give any company ideas it can use.

Disney clearly understands how to be a good citizen, and takes pride in doing it right! Read more details in their annual performance summaries, which are great resources for setting CSR goals.

Inspired to improve your citizenship efforts? We can help you include philanthropy that supports your goals—just contact us.

Don’t miss the latest CSR and philanthropy news and insights: Subscribe to our blog, and follow us on Linked In.

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

Donor Survey: You told us . . .


We recently sent out a survey to ask JustGive donors how we’re doing and get your opinion on some new potential giving services.

A big thank you! to the 1,356 of you who took the time to complete the survey and give us feedback. The majority of you who responded were female (69%) and Baby Boomers (49%).

Here’s what you shared with us.

Giving habits

Over half of you make a donation at least every few months, and 32% actively give more than once a month. mature_diverse_friends_9897267What prompts you to give is most often the fundraising effort of a friend or family member or an occasion (holiday, birthday, wedding, or memorial).

You use a mix of sites for your giving, but predominantly give through JustGive or websites for specific charities. You’ve given in many different ways—most frequently by donating to causes you care about, for a fundraising campaign, or as a gift or memorial donation (total 73%).

Satisfaction with JustGive services

For the majority (nearly 1,000), the overall donation experience and ease of using the website are what you are most satisfied with (76% and 72%, respectively). More than half of you are also happy with the:

  1. Number of charities you can give to (57%)
  2. Variety of ways to give (52%)
  3. Personal online Giving History (50%)

On the flip side of the coin, only about 4% are not satisfied with the overall donation experience and 3.5% aren’t as happy with the ease of using the website

Generally speaking, Millennials were slightly less satisfied than Baby Boomers with our services. So we’ll continue to work on improving that through refreshed website pages and a better user experience.

From your responses, we also learned we could do a better job talking about all the various giving services, like charity gift cards and recurring monthly donations.overall_donation_exp

Potential new services

What potential new services did you tell us you’d like? The ability to:

  1. Donate to someone else’s fundraiser for a project or cause (54%).
  2. Create a fundraiser for your project or cause (27%).
  3. Donate by text message (18%).

One of the biggest differences of opinion we saw about new services was that the ability to create a fundraiser was more desired by Millennials (born 1979 – 1994) than Baby Boomers (born 1946 – 1964).

So you know: We’re working on the #1 service for you. Watch for more to come this fall on our improved fundraising product.

Additional feedback 

Many of you took the time to add personal comments at the end of the survey. flower-22656_640-pixabayWe received many keep up the good work, and quick, easy, convenient to use comments about the website. J. Hansen said, “Thanks for all you do to help so many!” We appreciate your confidence and praise for JustGive.

Several of you mentioned our fees. Please know we’ll continue to operate as efficiently as possible to ensure that the most money from every dollar you give goes to your charity.

In your own words

quotes from survey responses

And from D. Kimbro, whose nonprofit uses JustGive to solicit funds: “We love your program.  It is very user friendly and easy to navigate.”

Thank you all for giving us your feedback, which we’ll use to do our best so you can just give—anytime, anywhere, for anyone.

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

Tips For A Mobile-Friendly Site


“Mobile first” That’s been the mantra for many tech companies in the last several years. With Google’s recent announcement that it will favor mobile-friendly websites in search results, this mindset is even more important for every organization with a website.

Mobile use and the difference it makes

Stats clearly back up increased mobile use too. According to the 2015 Internet Trends Report from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, U.S. adults spend more time using mobile (51%) than desktop devices (42%).

Image via thirteen23.com

Image via thirteen23.com

In fact, a 2014 Mobile Behavior Report from Salesforce says consumers spend an average of 3.3. hours on a smartphone and 3.1 hours on a tablet every day.

And for donations? As DonorDrive reports, responsive design doubles mobile giving. (Download their whitepaper for details.) Here’s some proof: Last year, the United Way Bay Area found that responsive design led to a 34% increase in mobile traffic and 28% growth in online donations.

Top mobile-friendly tips

Thinking mobile first means creating a simplified, usable website experience for your potential donors. No clutter, extra steps or complicated elements that aren’t easily clicked while on the go.

Here are some top tips for being  as mobile-friendly as possible:

  • Make sure your website loads quickly (check all devices). On mobile devices, users are often using a cellular connection which is slower than a typical internet connection. So the faster and more lightweight your pages are, the better. (Check out the JustGive home page on a mobile device to see how quickly it loads.)
  • Make sure your content is accessible when scrolling in an up-down manner on a narrow device (accommodating all size screens). Resist making your users turn their phone to landscape view, and instead, use a mobile responsive template that will resize your content based on the viewing screen size and aspect ratio.
  • Make sure all your buttons—especially your Donate button!—or other action links are highly visible on a mobile screen.

More tools

Google has posted a guide to help ensure that your website is mobile-friendly according to their guidelines. There’s even a handy test you can run to assess the mobile friendliness of your website.

If your website runs on WordPress, there are a hundreds of free, mobile-responsive themes (Google Search) and plug-ins like WPTouch that can quickly make your website more mobile-friendly.

Subscribe to our blog to keep getting helpful tips and tools for raising more money.

– Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

The Community Corps: Free Tech Help for Your Nonprofit


As a nonprofit organization, you’re often stretched thin, scrimping and saving to cover costs and get the help you need with a variety of tasks. For your technology projects, The Community Corps (TCC) is a great, no-cost resource to bridge the digital divide.

twitter-292994_1280_pixabayOur partner, The Community Corps connects nonprofits to experienced tech volunteers from top companies who can assist with technical training, resources and programming—throughout the country.

Since its start, TCC has matched thousands of volunteers to nonprofits, with a large focus on the advancement of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education and fostering the development of women in technology.

Kelli Antonucci, TCC’s Nonprofit Outreach Manager, tells us this is a great time for nonprofits to get tech help.

“We’ve had a huge surge in volunteer interest and are barely keeping up with getting enough projects for them,” Antonucci said.

“This is a wonderful time for nonprofits to post projectsas soon as they are posted, we have volunteers signing up.”

The type of tech help TCC volunteers can provide ranges from training on software platforms like Excel and Salesforce to updating websites to adding enhancements like a calendar or a blog.

macbook-624707_640_pixabayTCC volunteers can also advise nonprofits considering a large software or hardware purchase.

When you post a project on TCC, there are 10 major categories for assistance: technology planning and assessments, STEM career development, website, Microsoft Office, infrastructure, STEM events, Social Media, STEM program design, The Cloud, and data.

Best of all, tech help from The Community Corps is free.  To get started, just create your TCC account and post your request or project to attract volunteers.

– Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

P.S. Don’t miss out on other valuable resources you can use. Subscribe to our blog for more tips and tools! 

2016 Giving Outlook is Promising


The recent Philanthropy Outlook released by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy shows giving is on the upswing and momentum is building.

Distribution of total giving, by source, for the years 2015 and 2016. Source: The Philanthropy Outlook 2015 & 2016. Click to view full size.

Distribution of total giving, by source, for the years 2015 and 2016 from The Philanthropy Outlook. Click to view full size.

Here’s a snapshot of the good news presented by the fundraising and philanthropy consulting firm, Marts & Lundy, in The Philanthropy Outlook: 2015 & 2016, based on U.S. donations made to U.S. charities.

Giving from all sources is expected to rise 4.8% this year and 4.9% in 2016.

The bigger perspective is that each year’s growth will exceed the total giving for the years after the Great Recession (3.1%) and the estimated long-term average for the 40-year trend in total giving for 1973-2013 (3.8%).

Giving by source

This giving prediction includes cash and non-cash donations made by individuals, estates and corporations, and grants made by foundations.

  • Giving by Foundations is expected to increase the most – by 7.2% in 2015 and 6.7% in 2016. One contributing factor for this increase is the above average growth in the S&P 500.
  • Giving by Corporations follows closely with a 6% rise in 2015 and 4.8% next year. In these two years, as companies hire more employees, growing payrolls may mean scaling back on philanthropy. But researchers say that as corporations save their profits, they give more philanthropically.
  • Giving by Individuals/Households is expected to increase 4.4% this year and 4.1% in 2016. This is more than one percent higher than the historical average—for a source that makes up around 70% of all giving.
  • Giving by Estates is predicted to rise by 2.7% in 2015 and by 6.3% next year. This giving fluctuates widely from year to year, varying mostly due to very large bequests made by a few estates in a given year.

phil_outlookThe report is valuable because it gives us a scientifically developed and tested look at charitable giving. It’s something that will be updated annually to help us forecast. (A bit of detail: The research team used econometric methodology, testing more than 16,000 combinations of variables that could influence each source of giving before ultimately identifying 10 key predictors.)

To get the full report and read more about conditions that affect the outlook: The Philanthropy Outlook: 2015 & 2016.

Interested in increasing philanthropy as a part of your business? Just contact us.

– Andrea Lloyd
Director of Programs

To keep up on the latest trends and news in company philanthropy, subscribe to our newsletter.

Are There Service Fees for Nonprofits?


Featured Nonprofit FAQ
Are There Service Fees for Nonprofits?

Here at JustGive, we offer services that help you fundraise and reach more donors, including the ability to process online donations. One question we’re often asked is if there are fees associated with our services.

Is there a cost for our nonprofit organization to have a JustGive account or to use JustGive’s donation services?

There is no set up or monthly fee for nonprofits to use JustGive. It’s free for any 501(c)(3) organization to sign up for an account on JustGive.

Once you have a nonprofit account, you can also create a custom donation page for your organization, and place donation buttons and links on your website to collect online donations. We handle all the processing of those donations and mail your organization a monthly check for donations received.

When a donor makes a donation to your nonprofit through your JustGive donation page, button or link, we deduct a 4.5% processing fee to cover transaction costs and credit card fees. This fee is deducted from the donation before we send payment to you. (JustGive doesn’t bill you at any time.)

justgiveDonors have the option at checkout to cover the processing fee, which allows 100% of the donation to go to your organization.

For donations made directly through the JustGive site (www.justgive.org), there is an additional flat charge of $.35 deducted per donation.

But for nonprofits np_btn_donate_nowusing a JustGive Donation Page or custom Donate Now button or link, we waive the $.35 flat charge.

Find out more about collecting donations on JustGive.

– Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

Women power to Alzheimer’s


Two out of every three of the 5.2 million Americans who have Alzheimer’s disease are women. Women are also more likely to be caregivers of those with the disease, affected by it both emotionally and financially.

The sixth leading cause of death in the United States, Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills. Every 67 seconds, a brain develops Alzheimer’s disease.

These facts—and being personally touched by Alzheimer’s when her father, Sargent Shriver, was diagnosed in 2003 (he passed away in 2011) have award-winning journalist Maria Shriver on a mission to wipe out Alzheimer’s.  An Alzheimer’s advocate for the past 10 years, she testified before Congress to help pass the National Alzheimer’s Plan to stop the disease by 2025, and also recently produced the movie, Still Alice.

Wipe out Alzheimer’s

Shriver’s Wipe Out Alzheimer’s Challenge was created in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association and her nonprofit organization, A Woman’s Nation. The heart of this grassroots, social action effort is to end the devastating disease by educating, engaging and empowering women.  Our brains are most at risk, and she believes our brains are the ones that can turn the tide.

Saving women’s brains

To mobilize the movement, women are encouraged to take “The Pledge”  to stay educated about what it is, what it is not and make healthy lifestyle decisions about it.  We can also help raise funds to research women’s brains and challenge other organizations to make women’s brain research a priority.

All the money raised through the Wipe Out Alzheimer’s Challenge is going to the Alzheimer’s Association’s first-ever Women’s Alzheimer’s Research Fund to support cutting-edge brain research.

I’m joining the challenge.  I’ve seen Alzheimer’s personally take the mothers of two good friends and turn them into a person who, sadly, doesn’t recognize their own child. And I’m watching as a third friend manages her mother with dementia now. It’s heartbreaking—and I would love to figure out why.

I can think of no better time than Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness month to help fund research that can save lives. Join me in the fight today:

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

Charity Gift Cards Thank Employees and Reinforce Company’s Values


Last year, New England BioLabs (NEB) started using JustGive charity gift cards to reward employees and inspire them to embrace philanthropy. They joined the ranks of many companies who use our GiveNow cards in a variety of ways for employees and customers.

NEB was founded in the mid-1970s as a collective of scientists committed to developing innovative products for the life sciences industry. The company is now a recognized world leader in the discovery, development and commercialization of recombinant and native enzymes for genomic research.

NEB’s Corporate Controller, Brian Tinger, discovered JustGive while searching for ways to make donations on behalf of employees.

“We needed a partner to help administer the process,” he said.

“The company gives JustGive Charity Gift Cards to each employee at our bonus time to encourage them to embrace philanthropy, which has always been a core value at New England BioLabs,” Tinger told us.

NEB purchases JustGive Charity Gift Cards as downloadable claim codes, and then merges each claim code, its amount and expiration date into its own communication to every employee. Employees simply visit justgive.org to redeem their gift as a donation to a charity of their choice.

The idea to give charity gift cards to employees came after Tinger attended a Harvard lecture, “How to Buy Happiness,” by Michael Norton. (Norton’s also given it as a TED Talk.)

“The point of the lecture was that the act of giving is far more impactful than the act of spending money on yourself,” Tinger said.

He explained, “Our company has always been extremely generous with employee benefits, so we thought providing a charity gift card would be a perfect new concept to introduce to them. Since that time, we have also used JustGive to provide gifts to collaborators who have taken time to assist our company in scientific research and market research.”

Thanks to New England BioLabs for their support of JustGive, and for making philanthropy a part of doing good business.

Want to incorporate JustGive charity gift cards into your employee or customer program? Purchase gift cards online or contact us to find out more about how we can help.

– Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

Fundraising: 3 benefits of reviews


To fundraise effectively, you want to share your impact with donors and tell your story well.

gnp_bug-orangeYou’re already writing effective donor appeals and emails and have added social media in the last few years. You may be working with a content marketing strategy too . . . all the while watching for new ways to raise money with limited resources.

Are you using reviews as part of your fundraising strategy? With GreatNonprofits, it’s easy to do and to extend your reach to millions of people since they syndicate reviews across dozens of philanthropy partner sites like JustGive and GuideStar®.

Three big benefits of reviews

According to GreatNonprofits:

  • 80% of donors say reviews influence their giving decision
  • 90% of donors say reviews help them understand the work of a nonprofit

Another benefit of reviews is that your supporters tell your story for you. Their personal, often-memorable comments about what you do and how you do it help make your fundraising appeal.

Here’s how GreatNonprofits works:

Getting started

First: Claim your nonprofit. Take a few minutes to complete your profile and provide information about your impact (describe the results of your programs). By the way, the Donation button on your profile also creates another place where donors can directly and immediately give to your organization.

Second: Invite reviews. Ask donors, board members, volunteers, colleagues and clients through email and social media (all the people who know about your work). GreatNonprofits tools help you do this.

Third: Share those reviews on your social media channels, thanking your supporters and spreading your message. The site’s built-in sharing options make it simple.

Reviews can qualify your organization to earn the honor of a 2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit. When you receive 10 positive reviews (4 stars or above) and maintain an overall positive average (4 or 5 stars) from January 1, 2015 to October 31, 2015, you reach this status. Giving you more exposure and raising your credibility, with an independent stamp of approval for all your work.
– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

Nonprofit Spotlight: Rainbow House

Title Image Nonprofit Spotlight Rainbow House

It’s the mission of the Columbia, Missouri Rainbow House to keep children safe and support families in crisis through prevention, assessment, and intervention in child abuse and neglect.

A wall of handprints greets children, young people and their families who come in the door. They’re encouraged to find a hand that fits theirs, to let them know they’re not alone: another person their size has been here. Rainbow House puts children first and takes a team approach to helping them, focusing not on what they’ve been through, but where they’re going. Kids

“We’re constantly working on awareness,” says Development Director Chad McMinn. “People think abuse and neglect are something they see on a Dateline program, and not something happening here. It’s the same for teen homelessness.”

In Mid-Missouri, the Rainbow House is the only organization of its kind. It’s a local nonprofit that helps any child in the area who is at risk with programs and services that change their lives.

Rainbow House was started in 1986, when long-time foster parent Kathy Hughes wanted to provide a home-like environment so siblings could stay together and continue in their home school. In the last 29 years, Rainbow House has become a nonprofit operating three major programs: a children’s emergency shelter, a regional Child Advocacy Center, and a Homeless Youth Program.

Original farmhouse location on Oakland Gravel Road

Original farmhouse location on Oakland Gravel Road

Programs and Services

The Children’s Emergency Shelter temporarily houses children who are in foster care and helps children during a family crisis (the nonprofit expanded to include crisis care in 1992). The only shelter for several counties, Rainbow House gives Kid Coloringchildren a safe place to stay while their parents—struggling with homelessness, unemployment, temporary mental instability or other issues—stabilize their lives.

The Regional Child Advocacy Center (CAC) was created in August of 1998, when the Inter-Agency Council on Child Abuse and Neglect and nonprofit’s board of directors realized the area needed one.  Rainbow House is the only CAC for 11 counties, and has child therapists with Master’s degrees who conduct the forensic interviews to assess what needs to happen in the child’s best interests.  Serving children from birth to age 21, the center is a family-friendly environment that provides therapy for children who have been sexually abused and/or severely physically abused.

The Homeless Youth Program was started as a Teen Center in November of 2007, and is now an off-site living facility called “Sol House.” It offers temporary housing and services for homeless youth as well as an 18-month program that helps them make a meaningful and productive transition into adulthood. The year and a half program includes weekly life skill classes, and requires young people to maintain a job and be on an educational track (pursuing a trade skill or complete a GED or schooling).


In a recent year, 99% of the families helped by Rainbow House were at or below the poverty level. The majority of services were provided to children 5 – 18 years old; 65% of those were girls. In one year, the nonprofit:

  • Ensured nearly 3,000 individual safe nights for children and youth
  • Provided 622 therapy sessions
  • Conducted 396 forensic interviews
  • Raised awareness of 1,026 people through community education

Good Giving Practices

Since 2009, JustGive has partnered with the Rainbow House to raise money online. The nonprofit has taken advantage of the services we offer and branded their donation experience.

Custom Donate Now ButtonMarketing Director April Barnett created a custom donation button and placed it prominently on the home page (above the fold), using the JustGive link to take website visitors straight to their online Donation Page.

Rainbow House has customized its Donation Page with its mission and lists a range of six gift sizes (from $10 to $1,000), telling donors what their donation accomplishes.  “We switch those around, showing different price points. We think about what people feel good about giving and focus on direct services for the kids,” comments Barnett.

McMinn appreciates JustGive’s donation reports. “I love being able to export it into a pdf or excel file. It’s clean and clear to use.”

Donate NowIf you’d like to help Rainbow House, donate now to help make a difference in the lives of children.

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

P.S. If you’d like to be featured in the JustGive Blog, submit your nonprofit!