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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Charitable Fund Drive?

The State of Oregon Employees' Charitable Fund Drive is an annual, combined charitable giving campaign tailored to meet the needs and wishes of employees of the State of Oregon. The Charitable Fund Drive helps State employees create the future each of you wants to see become reality in Oregon. Whether you care about Oregon's animals, arts and culture, environment, equality and human rights, health, housing, families, or anything else - there is a nonprofit working for these ideals.

You can support any of about 900 charities or issues through the Fund Drive by making just one charitable gift. Oregon's Charitable Fund Drive was implemented in 1989 as a way to offer access to this wide range of charities through an easy, once-a-year campaign that gives state employees precise control over where their contributions are spent. Last year, state employees contributed more than $847,000 to the Fund Drive.
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How can I give?

One of the benefits of the Charitable Fund Drive is the ease with which you can handle all of your charitable giving in one step.

Want to make giving easy? The simplest option is to have your contribution deducted from your paychecks. Many employees find the Fund Drive's payroll contribution method easiest and most satisfying, because a small amount taken out of each check adds up to a substantial gift over the course of a year.  The Fund Drive has an easy online pledging system that is secure, paperless and simple to use. 
State employees, donate here. 
University employees, donate here. 

Have questions about the online pledge system?
FAQs - pledging online (16K pdf) 

Would you rather donate using cash or a check? The Fund Drive gladly accepts cash or checks. Is it easiest for you to give with a credit card? The Fund Drive can charge your gift to most major credit cards, and do it securely online. 
State employees, donate here. 
University employees, donate here. 

Planning on retiring soon? You can have a monthly gift sent automatically from your checking account through Electronic Funds Transfer. After you have retired, log on and donate at www.ipledgeonline.org/_rpe/. Whatever method you choose, the Fund Drive is designed to make your giving easy.

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Where does your contribution go?

When you contribute to the Charitable Fund Drive, 100% of your contribution goes to the organizations you designate. Last year's Fund Drive administrative costs were only 10 percent of the overall funds raised, less than half of many other states' campaigns. These costs are paid by the funds and federations in the campaign; no state funds are used. The Charitable Fund Drive Committee members realize that keeping fundraising expenses low is extremely important to the success of the Fund Drive. The Committee and the Campaign Management Organization (CMO) work hard to keep costs down.
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How are my donations and information handled and distributed?

When you make a payroll pledge in 2014, your donation information will be passed to the umbrella group your charity belongs to at the campaign's end in early 2015. The donation dollars will be deducted starting on the first paycheck of 2015.

If you make a one-time credit card or cash donation in 2014, those donations will be paid to the umbrella group your charity belongs to at the end of the campaign.

Each umbrella group has its own schedule for distributing dollars to individual charities, although most are on a quarterly payment basis with their funded charities.

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Why should I give my charitable contribution through CFD?

There are sound reasons for giving through the Fund Drive:

  • Charities prefer to process a single check from the Fund Drive, rather than numerous checks from individual contributors. This method keeps their administrative costs low.
  • Charities know early in the year roughly what their revenue from Fund Drive pledges will be, and they can plan their programs accordingly. Systematic planning is not possible with sporadic individual contributions.
  • Charities appreciate that the Fund Drive’s low overhead costs increase revenue for their programs. Donations given through the Fund Drive are a bargain for the participating charities.
  • Payroll contribution is a painless way to give—you won’t miss money you never see. And most of us can give a substantial annual gift on a monthly basis.
  • Your gift through the Charitable Fund Drive has a greater impact, because it is combined with contributions from other State employees.
  • You are part of a generous State community as a Fund Drive donor.
  • You will receive personal recognition from the Fund Drive.
  • You may elect to remain anonymous by checking the box under the line for name and address. You will receive an email from the Campaign Management Organization acknowledging your gifts for tax purposes.

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How can I be sure that my money goes only to the agencies I want?

When you "DESIGNATE YOUR GIFT" your contribution will go to the agency or agencies you designated. If you wish to receive an acknowledgment from your designated charities, be sure to fill out the acknowledgment section on the online pledge system or paper pledge card. Your name and home address will then be forwarded to the charities you have designated with their first pledge payment next spring. They will email or mail a letter to you and acknowledge your gift.
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What if I don't want to choose specific charities?

The Charitable Fund Drive offers an option on the online pledge site for State employees to make an Undesignated Gift. Any donations using this option will be split equally among the statewide umbrella groups and the local United Way or United Fund in the community where you work.
 
If you are giving using a paper pledge form, write in code number 5000 to make an undesignated gift.
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Are contributions tax deductible?

YES, IF you itemize your deductions when you complete your annual tax return. Consult a tax professional if you have questions about deducting charitable donations.
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What do I need as proof of my contribution for tax purposes?

IRS regulations now require that you keep your last pay stub for the year, a copy of your pledge form, and acknowledgment letters from the organizations you contributed to. The Campaign Management Team will send you an e-mail or letter acknowledging your gift.
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Can I still give if I retire from the State or a University?

Yes, you certainly can!  Just because you’re retired doesn’t mean you can’t support your favorite charities every year!  As a PERS recipient, you can NOW make a charitable donation using your credit card or an ACH (bank) transfer.  It can be a one-time or recurring gift, and you can split your gift among a wide range of charities.
 
Visit www.ipledgeonline.org/_rpe online, register with the system, then make a gift to any of almost 900 Oregon charities.  It’s easy, secure, and your gift will continue to have an impact!  Thank you for your service to our Oregon communities, and for giving back.
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What is the Fund Drive's administrative cost?

The Fund Drive always keeps administrative costs below 10% of the dollars raised. Fund Drive costs are paid by the umbrella groups raising donations through the Fund Drive, NOT by the State of Oregon.  Administrative costs are NEVER withheld from employee donations.
 
A Charitable Fund Drive Committee reviews and approves the proposed budget for the campaign each year. Administrative costs cover travel expenses; personnel costs; materials printing; donor, campaign leader, postage and agency recognition items; a CPA audit; and other authorized campaign expenses.

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What is the relationship between the Fund Drive and the CMO?

The Charitable Fund Drive needs a professional organization to plan, promote and carry out its goals. State regulations require that every local campaign be managed by a not-for-profit agency. EarthShare Oregon and the Children's Trust Fund of Oregon were chosen by the CFD Committee to manage the campaign in 2005 and has been managing it ever since.
 
The Campaign Management Organization (CMO) team members all do their part to make sure the Fund Drive is properly planned and managed. The CMO is not paid a fee to run the campaign, but is reimbursed for approved Fund Drive expenditures through the annual budget. EarthShare Oregon and Children's Trust Fund of Oregon also apply independently to participate in the campaign and are eligible to receive donations.

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Why are some charities part of the Fund Drive and others are not?

All charities included in this year's campaign applied through their federation or fund in March to the State CFD Committee. Decisions about eligibility are based on compliance with Oregon Administrative Rule 121.030.006 - 121.030.090
 
If your favorite agency is not listed through the online pledge system or in the paper brochure, it may not belong to a federation or fund. Call the Campaign Management Organization Team Leader, Deb Furry, at 503-636-4058 for a specific answer.

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How can a charity I like become eligible for the Charitable Fund Drive?

If you know of a 501(c)(3) charity that has a "substantial presence" in Oregon, they may be eligible to receive donations through the Charitable Fund Drive. State rules require eligible charities to be part of a participating Fund or Federation; charities cannot individually apply for inclusion. Use the "Charity Lookup Tool" on the Charitable Fund Drive's pledging site (under Main Menu) to explore the different funds and federations. Contact those that seem to fund organizations like your favorite and ask when they admit new member charities.
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Why donate when I don't use services from the listed charities?

You most likely have had contact with at least one charity that receives Charitable Fund Drive donations. From swimming lessons at the YMCA, to Red Cross CPR instruction, almost all of us have been touched by various worthy organizations. Your co-worker or family members may have received job training or literacy skills from a Charitable Fund Drive charity. Many advances in medicine are due, in great part, to charitable donations for research and direct service. Greenspaces we visit are often maintained by nonprofit groups.

Even if we have no direct involvement with a Fund Drive agency, each of us benefits from living in a community that provides so many services for all who want or need them. Everyone's quality of life is enhanced by voluntary organizations.

Charitable organizations fill the gaps between our economic system and the limitations of government. If it were not for charities, our taxes would be much higher and community needs much greater. Support the charity of your choice through the Charitable Fund Drive and then ask others for their support!
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