Can JustGive Help Our Company Distribute Donations to Charity?

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Featured FAQ
Can JustGive help our company distribute donations to charity?

Here at JustGive, we offer services to help companies of any size incorporate philanthropy into their business. Many of our clients already have systems in place to collect charitable donations from their employees or customers, but need a qualified partner to take care of distributing those funds to the recipient charities. That’s where JustGive can step in.

Question
Can JustGive help our company distribute donations to charity?

Answer
donation_flickr_opensourceYes, JustGive offers donation processing support for a variety of situations. As a donor advised fund (DAF), we are authorized to manage charitable donations on behalf of companies, organizations, families, or individuals (eliminating your compliance headaches).

The process can be as simple as sending us a spreadsheet periodically with the donation detail (recipient charity, donation amount, donor info if available, etc.). We use that data to verify charities and securely distribute the donations, then bill you for the total donation amount and processing service.

Click here to learn more about our donation processing services and discover how JustGive’s clients have made an impact using our services. And don’t hesitate to contact us to see how we can help your company.

For more FAQs about corporate giving, visit our Support Center.

– Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

P.S. To keep up on philanthropy news and insights: Subscribe to our blog, and follow us on LinkedIn.

CSR Pioneers Ben & Jerry’s

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Ben & Jerry’s is thought of as the ice cream company with heart and soul. From the start, its founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield set out to prove that business can play a positive role in society.

In 1978, after taking a $5 correspondence course in ice cream-making from Penn State and making a $12,000 investment ($4,000 borrowed), Ben and Jerry began selling ice cream from a renovated gas station in Burlington, Vermont.  While the company name references only two men, a third man, Jeff Furman (a lawyer and accountant) is considered the ampersand in Ben & Jerry’s and a driving force in the company’s social responsibility efforts.

Utne Reader described them as three men who shared ideals formed in the 1960s and tempered by Vietnam and Watergate. They were smart and creative but suspicious of big business, painfully aware of injustice, and looking for better ways to live.

Social mission as a guiding business principle

In 1988, Ben & Jerry’s became one of the first companies in the world to make a social mission integral to its business and inseparable from its product and economic goals. Its social mission: use the company in innovative ways to make the world a better place.

When Unilever bought Ben & Jerry’s in 2000, the company became a wholly-owned subsidiary but fought to retain its social consciousness. Through a unique merger agreement, Ben & Jerry’s established an independent board of directors so it could maintain the company’s mission and preserve its values—a board that has the right to challenge Unilever at any time if it feels those values are compromised.

In September 2012, Ben & Jerry’s was certified as a B corp and became the first and only wholly-owned subsidiary of a public company to do so. Its publicly-available impact assessment shows how the company is doing in its governance and for the environment, workers, and community. (The B Corp model can ensure companies provide benefits to society in a way that’s transparent, balanced, and people can believe in.)

“We wanted to constantly challenge ourselves to be better,” said Rob Michalak, Ben & Jerry’s Director of Social Mission. “This model provides the rigor and standards to ensure that we are living up to our own mission and that we push further.”

The measures of success

Creating linked prosperity for suppliers, employees, farmers, franchisees, customers, and neighbors—everyone connected to Ben & Jerry’s—is how the company defines success. They operate to benefit people and communities, support social and environmental justice, and give back.

Sourcing & purchasing ingredients. The company uses its purchasing power to buy Fair Trade Certified base ingredients of sugar, cocoa, banana, coffee and vanilla.

In manufacturing, Ben & Jerry’s works to reduce its footprint and has offset 22,400 tons of CO2 emissions since 2002. The company is also actively involved in climate justice, mandatory GMO labeling, peace building and many more issues.

Ben & Jerry’s: Giving back

Their efforts to give back go beyond improving quality of life for local communities. In addition to donating more than 5% of profits to charity:

  • Ben & Jerry’s foundation engages its employees in philanthropy and social change work, and supports grassroots activism and community organizing for social and environmental justice around the country. In 1991, the foundation was restructured to be employee-led, and employees make all the decisions about grants. In 2014, the foundation won the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy’s award for a Corporate Grantmaker.
  • The foundation funds the Vermont Community Action Team (CAT) grant program for an array of programs, and prioritizes support for basic human needs and the underserved, including seniors, at-risk youth and low income communities. In addition to grants, employees work together on several large-scale community service projects each year.
  • PartnerShops are independently-owned Ben & Jerry’s scoop shops operated by community-based nonprofit organizations, and run as social enterprises. They offer job and entrepreneurial training to youth and young adults who may face barriers to employment.

Ben & Jerry’s has set a high CSR bar. Not every business has the resources and ability to pursue social responsibility with such fervor, but any business can get started.  Inspired to discover how? Contact JustGive today; we’ll help.

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

What Programs and Products does JustGive Offer for Companies?

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FEATURED FAQ:
JustGive’s Corporate Services

For company giving programs, United Way may pop to mind first. But there are many options and flexible partners, like JustGive, with the experience and expertise to help your business make an impact with philanthropy.

people_jumping_29365278.jpgWhether you’re a large corporation or small business, JustGive offers a variety of products to incorporate charitable giving into your business . . .  and, at the same time, engage employees and customers. Making things better for your company, your community, and the world.

Here’s a short description of what JustGive can do for your company.

Question
What programs and products does JustGive offer for companies?

Answer
JustGive can help your company launch a donation campaign or giving day for a specific charity or cause, or a long-term charitable giving program that encourages philanthropy year round (including matching gifts).

We can also provide donation support and processing if you have an existing giving program or if you’re a new company with a social impact purpose. JustGive takes care of compliance and efficiently distributes donations to charity for you.

woman_casual_business_25401351.jpgJustGive’s charity gift cards are a great way for your company to give employees and customers something extra: the chance to make a difference for a cause they care about. They’re flexible, and ideal as holiday or thank you gifts, traffic-generating tradeshow giveaways, rewards and incentives, or distinctive sales meeting swag. Your recipients can redeem the charity gift cards to donate to any charity they choose (from nearly 2 million in our database).

Get more detail about all our Corporate Services on our site and read our Success Stories to discover how other companies have effectively used JustGive’s charitable giving products.

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

-Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

2016 Giving Outlook is Promising

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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.

Making an Impact – TOMS style

Image Source: www.toms.com

Image Source: http://www.toms.com

TOMS Shoes is a shoe company like no other – for every pair of shoes they sell, they give another to a child in a developing country. In case you don’t already know how it got started in 2006, founder Blake Mycoskie was traveling in Argentina when he saw children facing hardships because they were growing up without shoes. He discovered alpargatas, the traditional South American flat shoes, then spent a day fitting 250 children with their own pair.

Here’s the inspiring story:

Giving Back

Giving is in the company’s DNA and embedded in its brand promise. TOMS believes in improving people’s lives through business. So what began as a simple One for One® shoe idea has grown into a powerful business model that marries fun, profit and social good. Through an expanded product line, consumer purchases, and partners, TOMS giving now includes:

  • Sight – For each eyewear purchase, another person receives a full eye exam and treatment needed (glasses to surgery). TOMS has helped restore sight for more than 300,000 people in 13 countries.
  • Water – Each bag of TOMS Roasting Co. Coffee provides a week’s supply of safe water. The company has supplied over 100,000 weeks of safe water in 7 countries where they also source sustainable coffee beans.
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    Image Source: http://www.toms.com

    Safe Births – This year, TOMS Bag Collection launched in 4 countries with 3 Giving Partners to help address the need for advancements in maternal health. Each bag purchase provides training for skilled attendants and distributes birth kits containing items a woman needs to safely give birth.

In 2013, TOMS committed to locally producing one third of their Giving Shoes in areas where they give them away. This has led to creating over 700 jobs and producing more than 8 million pairs of shoes in factories in Argentina, China, Ethiopia, Haiti, India and Kenya.

TOMS works with nearly 120 Giving Partners (nonprofit humanitarian organizations) to fulfill its One for One promise.

In addition to One for One purchases, TOMS is the force behind at least two global issue awareness days each year. Thursday, May 21, is the company’s annual One Day Without Shoes to raise awareness for children’s health and education. For every photo of bare feet tagged on Instagram, TOMS will give a new pair of shoes to a child in need — no purchase necessary. (Pass it on!)

Image Source: www.toms.com

Image Source: http://www.toms.com

Corporate Responsibility

For TOMS, Corporate Responsibility includes “focusing on the environmental and social impacts of our products and operations, responsible giving, and employee life.” This means not only making products from sustainable and vegan materials, and ensuring that suppliers comply with their country’s labor laws . . . but also building environmentally-friendly new stores, and providing startup funds for 20+ new companies with a social mission.

Image Source: www.toms.com

Image Source: http://www.toms.com

As one of the only company we know with a Chief Giving Officer, giving is core to TOMS work as a responsible company. In the words of Mycoskie, “Ultimately, I’m trying to create something that’s going to be here long after I’m gone.”  Now that’s what you call a worthwhile legacy!

To read more about Mycoskie’s journey as an entrepreneur and insights from founders of other well-known brands that give back, check out his book, Start Something That Matters.

Inspired to get started or build on your company’s giving program? Just contact us.

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

Behind the Data Curtain: Where JustGive Gets Charity Information

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Featured FAQ:
JustGive’s Charity Data

If you’ve spent time on the JustGive website, you know that you can search a database of nearly 2 million 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, and you’ve probably wondered about our source for the information.

Question
Where does JustGive get all that charity data from?

Answer
We use two sources for the charity data on JustGive: the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Exempt Organizations database and GuideStar®, the premier organization that offers up-to-date information on hundreds of thousands of nonprofits.

The IRS database is available online, and contains the information for registered 501(c)(3) charitable organizations (or “exempt organizations” as they refer to them).

On the IRS website, you can look up a single charity’s information and status, or download the entire database of exempt organizations. The IRS also maintains data on charities that have had their exempt status revoked, and in many cases, reinstated.

We also partner with GuideStar, which puts a more user-friendly face on the IRS data, and gathers information about impact, transparency, governance, and more.

The JustGive website experience

When you search for a charity on JustGive, you’ll often see pages of search results. The results list charities from the GuideStar database that match your search term(s). CharityInfoPopupClick on the charity’s hyper-linked name and a window will pop up with even more vital information, including the organization’s mission, financial data, programs and more. All this data can help you find out more about an organization you may want to support.

Nonprofit Tip

If you’re a nonprofit, it’s a best practice to claim your organization on the GuideStar Exchange and be sure your information is up-to-date. This ensures that donors see the latest information about your organization when they are searching on JustGive, and that you receive checks from us in a timely manner.

For more FAQs, visit our Help Center.

– Sarah Bacon
Director of Product

Community Giving = Good Business

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If you’re hesitating to make community service part of business, a few minutes with Alison Roessler will change your mind. She’ll inspire you to make it your culture and get you fired up about the benefits of giving back in a heartbeat.

I talked with Roessler the other day about what making an impact means to her and why it’s important. As CEO and Founder of the Oakland, California fitness and wellness center Truve, established in 2014, she can’t imagine doing business any other way.

How did you start giving back?
I got started at a young age by my Mom. She was in charge of a holiday gift drive for an Oregon-wide credit union, and I went with her to deliver gifts to families. In high school I chaired a canned food drive, and helped with a pageant to raise money for the ICU at a local hospital. In college, through my sorority, I worked with the blind. Then I went to Costa Rica on a fluke trip, saw the poverty there and wanted to see how I could help. (The nonprofit she started in 2008, The Stars of Tomorrow/Las Estrellas de Manana, is working to break the cycle of poverty one child at a time.)

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Did you build community service into the business when you created Truve?
Yes. It was a driving factor for me in creating the business. I was doing some pro bono work – helping people with diabetes and more – at other fitness places and they were charging me to use the facility. I thought that was crazy! I wanted to make fitness accessible to everyone.

How are you making volunteering and giving back part of the business?
11036916_1635034656718468_2763814053344646237_nWe have a big event every month to give back. Anyone who is part of the Truve family – practitioners, members, and anyone who drops in to attend free classes – can suggest something that’s important to them and we’ll organize a class, run, fundraising drive or event to raise money.  Last month, we taught classes at the Lion’s Center for the Blind, just 2 blocks up the street. This month, we’re giving a drop-in class discount for anyone who brings in a non-perishable food item or arts and crafts supplies for the Lafayette Elementary School.

I made it a requirement for practitioners who are part of the Truve family to do 30 minutes to an hour every week, or 2 to 4 hours of pro bono service a month. Many of us teach free classes (we have 8 to 10 a week), including acupuncture and Reiki. Our Esthetician helps cancer patients and is involved in feral cat rescue. A Spin teacher reads to kids.

What would you say to business owners who think it costs too much to make volunteering a part of their work?
The benefits so outweigh the costs. It’s totally worth it; it comes back to you tenfold. The return my practitioners get from it and the change they’re making in the world. . . they’re happier afterwards, so glad they did it and ready to do it again!

Vitruvian ManGiving back to the community brings the whole culture of the business together. It should be a part of every business model.

What’s the best way to get over any hesitations about it being too hard to get started?
Dive in – head first – for something you’re passionate about. Once you do, it grows from there. You don’t have to be a Microsoft of the world to do this. (Truve is a small business.)

Truve’s name is inspired by Leonardo DaVinci’s Vitruvian Man, an illustration that shows a person’s wingspan is the same as his height,  with the human body in perfect balance. The fitness classes and services Truve provides, and its community service, actually puts all of life in perfect balance.

np_btn_donate_nowIf you’d like to help the Costa Rica nonprofit, The Stars of Tomorrow, donations are happily accepted.

Ready to incorporate giving back into your business? Just contact us.

– Candy Culver
Marketing Consultant

Corporate Giving: Latest Trends

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

The CECP Giving in Numbers: 2014 Edition looked at what’s happened in corporate philanthropy and employee engagement programs since the end of the Great Recession in 2009. The report, created in association with The Conference Board, analyzed trends and giving behaviors (from 2010 through 2013) for 261 of the world’s leading companies.

Key finding: 66% of companies increased giving as a percentage of revenue, demonstrating that engagement is widely considered sound business strategy.

10 Takeaways

Ten valuable stats from the report to see how your company measures up:

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Click to view full size

  1. Corporate giving increased for 64% of companies post-recession – with more than a third of companies increasing contributions by 25% or more (This reflects overall increased confidence in the U.S. economy by consumers and CEOs)
  2. Giving and business performance increased together: profits increased for 59% of companies that gave 10% or more since 2010
  3. 86% of companies match employee contributions to qualifying nonprofit organizations
  4. Three primary cause areas dominate company giving:
    • Education @ 28%, including K-12 and Higher education
    • Health & Social Services @ 27%
    • Community & Economic Development @ 14%
  5. Corporate giving to Community and Economic Development initiatives grew the most of any cause area (by 34%)
  6. A majority of companies (76%) measured social outcomes and impacts in 2013, showing corporate funders want to know the value created by giving
  7. While 79% of companies operate a corporate foundation, there’s a shift afoot, and recent cash contribution growth have come predominantly from Corporate Community Affairs budgets
  8. From 2012 t0 2013, in kind gifts (product donations and pro bono services) drove the largest increases (10%+) in total giving
  9. The median total giving per employee for all companies was $644
  10. Fortune 100 companies are starting to better align their giving focus with their business strategy and transitioning away from partnership that don’t match up

And, in this National Volunteer Week, it’s worth mentioning that giving professionals who

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

attended the CECP Summit last May ranked Volunteer time off as the most effective motivational tool for increasing employee satisfaction.

How does your company’s giving match up to these findings? Do any of these trends surprise you? Leave us a comment below with any thoughts you have.

Don’t hesitate to contact us if you’d like to explore new ideas or discuss your giving programs.

For more Giving in Numbers details, download the 54-page report.

– Andrea Lloyd

Director of Programs

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

Charity Gift Cards: Company Gifts with More Meaning

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Gift Cards. They’re the ubiquitous, go-to gift in our modern age. They work for the person who has everything, or for that hard-to-gift friend or family member. They’ve even become common rewards in the corporate world for employees and loyal customers.

But what if a gift card could also give back? That’s exactly what our GiveNow charity gift cards do. When you give a JustGive charity gift card to someone, they can redeem it on our site to donate to any charity (more than 1.8 million online). It’s the ultimate pay-it-forward gift.

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

We’ve helped dozens of companies incorporate charity gift cards into their employee and customer programs. On our site, it’s easy to purchase large quantities of charity gift cards in just a few minutes. You can send them via email to your recipients, or download gift card claim codes and use them into your own communication.

BONUS: Gift card purchases are tax-deductible donations.

You can turn a gift-giving or reward opportunity into one that makes your employees or customers feel good, and empower them to make a difference for causes they care about. Here are several ways companies have done just that.

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Work Anniversaries

A major tech company purchases JustGive charity gift cards every month to give to their employees on their annual anniversary with the company. Employees then visit a website we’ve branded with the company’s logo and messaging to redeem the gift card and donate to a charity of their choice.

Gift with Purchase

An online retailer wanted to run a promotion offering a free gift with purchase, but wanted a gift with more meaning than cash back or additional merchandise.

They decided to offer our GiveNow charity gift cards to customers who made an online purchase of $100 or more. As soon as their purchase is completed, the customer receives a gift card claim code in their order email and visits a branded website on justgive.org to redeem it.

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Tradeshow Booth Giveaway

Job website Monster was looking for a unique incentive to attract customers to their tradeshow booth. JustGive supplied charity gift cards to hand out at the booth, and designed a branded donation website where attendees could redeem their cards. After entering a unique code, attendees selected a nonprofit to support from an approved group of charities.

Nearly 20,000 people participated and more than $1 million dollars was donated to charity. The program also raised Monster’s brand awareness among its most valuable enterprise customers.

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Image Source: Flickr

Client Gifts

A portfolio manager at a large financial institution was looking for a meaningful gift to give to his clients for key milestones in their lives, like the birth of a new baby, a new home purchase or other celebratory moment.

He discovered JustGive charity gift cards and now purchases them in bulk to keep on hand as gift opportunities arise. Clients have reacted positively to the cards and he feels like this gift helps him build stronger relationships.

On-Package Promotion/Giveaway

For its 100th anniversary, Life Savers candy wanted to create a way for its customers to donate online through a Connect for a Cause campaign. JustGive provided claim codes that were printed on Life Savers packaging, and customers visited a Life Savers-branded website to redeem the code for a donation to one of the featured charities in numerous cause areas.

The program ran for 4 months, brought in thousands of donations from Life Savers customers, and raised nearly $60,000 for charity.

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Holiday Gifts

SEER Interactive wanted to find something besides the standard gift basket to give clients for the holidays. SEER purchased our charity gift cards, which were personalized with the company’s logo and custom message, and emailed directly to clients. With just a few clicks, they could quickly donate online to their favorite charity through justgive.org.

After receiving an overwhelmingly positive response from clients, the company now purchases charity gift cards as their meaningful holiday gift every year.

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

P.S. To receive the latest news and trends in company philanthropy, subscribe to our newsletter.

The Corporate Citizenship Difference

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Measuring the results of your citizenship efforts (environmental and social) can be a challenge. You want to know: What difference does it make? In addition to the indicators you build in to measure your own programs, the research from the Carroll School of Management Center for Corporate Citizenship at Boston College can help answer that question.

For the first time in more than a decade, in the 2014 State of Corporate Citizenship report, a majority of executives (across all industries) confirm that corporate citizenship helps their business succeed. Here are three key findings from the research.

  1. Corporate Citizenship delivers real business results.  According to the study, executives believe corporate citizenship not only helps their companies achieve strategic goals like increasing market share, it also improves financial performance and returns value to their shareholders. Achievements they gave are impressive: Companies that integrate their citizenship efforts into business initiatives are 2.2x more likely to gain access to new markets and 2.3x more likely to be successful with employee retention than companies that don’t.
  1. Over the next three years, executives plan to
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    increase corporate citizenship resources.  Executives see the value of corporate citizenship and are putting their money behind it—investing in environmental, philanthropic and social programs that deliver. As the economy has recovered, they have found their citizenship efforts strengthened in many ways, including helping them compete globally and address the pressure for long-term financial returns.

  1. The long term approach to corporate citizenship pays off.  Ninety three percent of the executives in the survey report that citizenship efforts supported for four years or more achieve the biggest gains: They are 3.9x more likely to report success in reducing employee health care costs and 3.6x more likely to report success with reducing waste as a result of long-term citizenship efforts.

The bottom line: Being a responsible leader and good corporate citizen makes a tangible difference – not just in your community and with your employees, but also in the financial success of your business.

If you’d like to start or build on your company’s citizenship efforts with philanthropy, we can help. Contact us today.

To download the Executive Report and read more about this study visit the Carroll School of Management Center for Corporate Citizenship at Boston College website.

 

– Andrea Lloyd

Director of Programs