This blog is sponsored by the Workplace Giving Alliance, a group of federations that participate in the U.S. government’s Combined Federal Campaign and other public sector workplace fund drives. If you don’t know what a federation does in the CFC, you’re not alone. And one of the things we’ll be doing here is helping people understand how the CFC operates and, in the process, explaining the role of federations. We’ll also explain PCFOs and LFCCs and other alphabet-soup entities that are vital parts of the CFC machinery.
But mostly we’ll focus on donors, because the CFC is really their campaign. That’s not just a nice sentiment. Donors actually pay for CFC operations. Campaign operations are funded out of donations to the campaign. That’s a fact we will keep firmly in mind in all our discussions.
We want to see a CFC that honors the generous intentions of payroll philanthropists. That means getting every possible dollar to its intended goal – a designated charity. CFC operations are vast and complicated, with lots of “middle men” and many opportunities for inefficiency. (Even so, it’s a good deal for charities, which say it’s a lower-cost way to raise money than any other means available to them.)
We want more people to understand how the CFC works, in all its counter-intuitive complexity. We believe this is the first step toward transparency, which will lead to greater efficiency and to more donor dollars reaching charities. So a large part of our effort here will be aimed at explaining CFC machinery.
In addition, we have collected information about donor choices in the CFC. Until now, nationwide data on CFC pledging has been available only via the government’s form 1417, on which local CFC administrators report their aggregate results to the national CFC office. The 1417s do not break down results for individual charities. Our report, A Million Donors Choose, presents this individual charity information for the first time. An interim report is available now, with an update due in December. In this blog, we’ll periodically look in detail at various aspects of the report.
If you’re interested in the CFC, or in workplace giving in general, we hope you’ll visit us often, maybe even subscribe. We’ll have something new a couple of times a week. And do let us know what you think. Those who care about workplace giving may constitute a fairly small universe, but we can be pretty passionate about it. Let’s have a conversation.