Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Give BIG Tomorrow

The Seattle Foundation has its Give BIG event tomorrow, May 2nd.   

If you have been meaning to support a non-profit organization (educational or otherwise), this is a great opportunity to give.    Here's how it works:

Each donation made through The Seattle Foundation's website to the any of the 1,300 profiled nonprofit
between midnight and midnight (Pacific Time) on May 2, 2012 will receive a pro-rated portion of the matching funds (or "stretch") pool. The amount of the "stretch" depends on the size of the stretch pool and how much is raised in total donations on GiveBIG day. For example, if a nonprofit organization receives 3 percent of the total donations during GiveBIG, then it will receive 3 percent of the stretch pool. 


Throughout GiveBIG, donors will be chosen at random to have an additional $1,000 given to the charity that received their donation. The selected donor will also be eligible to win a Starbucks gift card worth $100!

Kind of cool to think one donation could jump to $1,000. 


mirmac1 said...

Does Alliance get to skim any off the top?

Charlie Mas said...

Both the Alliance for Education and the Seattle Foundation will take fees from this.

Disgusted said...

As long as The Seattle Foundation has connections to TfA, I won't support them.

mirmac1 said...

Sorry. No chance. Same reason as Disgusted.

Lori said...

Why would the Alliance for Education get to "skim" off the money made in the GiveBIG tomorrow? They are one of the 1,300 organizations that the Seattle Foundation is featuring as a potential recipient, but that's it, right?

Honestly, this is a great event and can bring much needed funds to local non-profit groups who are here in Seattle doing important work, day in and day out, even in these difficult times when donations are down. I'm excited for it; I have friends and family who work for some of the featured organizations, and I know how helpful this event was last year.

You're not hurting the Seattle Foundation or TFA by not participating. But, if you've been meaning to donate to a local cause you care about, this is a great way to stretch your funds and for these organizations to get additional visibility.

Think of it this way: the Seattle Foundation will be matching the funds based on what we the people choose. Let's make them give their money to the groups WE think deserve it.

mirmac1 said...

Good point Lori. I'm just a difficult person. I also do not donate through United Way. Still, charities get $$ from me.

Charlie Mas said...

The Alliance for Education takes 5.0% (soon to be 7.5%) of the cash they process for each account they administer. If cash is flowing into those accounts, the Alliance will get their cut.

The Seattle Foundation is a community fund. They manage money for charitable institutions, primarily donor advised funds. They take a fee for managing this money. If any of the money goes into one of the funds managed by the Seattle Foundation, then the Seattle Foundation will get paid.

Jan said...

Charlie -- do we know how much the SF gets paid for its money management?

Disgusted said...

"You're not hurting the Seattle Foundation or TFA by not participating. But, if you've been meaning to donate to a local cause you care about, this is a great way to stretch your funds and for these organizations to get additional visibility. "

I've come to believe in directly donating directly to organizations. I'm tired of political agendas and administrative fees. Just my personal preference.

seattle citizen said...

The Seattle Foundation, while performing admirable work, also has supported TFA and, perhaps, more "reform" in the form of CCER, Community Center for Education Results. CCER seems pretty innocuous, but I have been somewhat suspect... they have the Gates Foundation and LEV as sponsors (and also a group called OneAmerica...hmmm... gotta look THAT up, now...Really? "OneAmerica"? Sounds sort of totalitarian somehow...). The page describing SF's support of this CCER initiative lists Stand For Children and LEV as organizations that are "here to help" (not necessarily connected to CCER, but as SF's recommended orgs....Hmmm...
IF Seattle Foundation were ONLY doing clearinghouse duties for non-profits, I'd be a bunch happier. But like the Alliance it seems they are also dabbling in policy, serving as a conduit for big-buck reformers and wannabe policy makers to set policy via "community" "collaboration."

Charlie Mas said...

The Seattle Foundation charges 1.5% for the administration of donor advised funds. In addition to this fee, there is a money management fee of another 70 to 90 bps.

The total cost of a donor advised fund ranges from 2.2% to 2.4% annually.

Anonymous said...

Make sure when you give directly to the organizations you won't support through Give Big, that you double or triple your donation, because the Seattle Foundation will add to donations and other organizations and foundations will match them IN ADDITION.

I'm with Lori, especially because my small donation will be multiplied to do even more good at organizations such as Real Change and the Heart Association.

Big Giver

emeraldkity said...

I think this is a great idea, I was surprised by the negative balance of a few of the organizations I regularly donate to, and on this occasion have decided to support smaller organizations that I have personal experience with, who don't spend more than they raise.

Technology Service Corps ( which looks like the group that formed after the district tore apart the Global Technology Academy), and peace trees Vietnam, a group that sponsors de-mining & community building projects, in quang Tri province.

I have so many organizations I support, Friendly Water for the World, for example is one of my favorites, which isn't on this list. ( it is out of Olympia), that having my donation matched, makes it go farther, which makes me happy.

emeraldkity said...

Stand for children
All do NOT have ANY financial information available on the Seattle Foundation website, so I will not be donating to them.
As if.

Anonymous said...

I haven't looked at the Seattle Foundation site though others evidently have and say there is nothing there on The Big Give. It is too bad, because it is my understanding that, for this ONE BIG DRIVE, which they see as a way to reach out to help a number of organizations that are too small to ordinarily avail themselves of Seattle Foundation services, there is NO FEE. Again, I can't grab data I don't have, so I can't back up my claim, but I have been told that they take nothing from the Big Give money. NADA. It ALL passes through -- and they wear themselves out doing it. It is a huge undertaking for their staff. They see this as a big "give" not only by donors (us) but by them BACK to the community -- and a way to reach out to smaller entities that could use their help in raising funds, but who ordinarily cannot afford them. If this is true -- and they haven't sufficiently explained that, I hope they do so next year.

Second -- with respect to whether the SF gets "tarred" with the sins of the donor advised funds that they manage -- I don't think they necessarily should bear that brunt, unless they are out there aligning themselves with the political objectives of those donors, and I don't think they are. I think they are more like a Switzerland here. Maybe, like Switzerland, there are some policies towards the way they manage the funds of others that need to change, but Switzerland is not Ghaddafi just because they may have held his country's sovereign funds, or Chavez, just because they hold his country's money. Again -- I realize there ARE issues with Switzerland around facilitation, secrecy, etc. All I am really saying here is that just like I can't shoot the Fed Ex guy who shows up with the default letter (on behalf of the bank), I shouldn't shoot the Seattle Foundation just because it delivered the TfA contribution (on behalf of private donors). It was up to the Board -- not the SF -- to say whether or not anonymity was appropriate.

Frankly, I can't afford to give much to anyone today but I would give through the Big Give if I could. Last year, one of the organizations that received one of the "golden ticket" prizes was -- Real Change. While much of their work is with the monied crowd, they would love to be able to expand into work with smaller, less wealthy entities. The SF is not an "advocacy org" the way the Alliance is. They aren't taking a skim off everything -- and then using those funds to lobby for harmful, divisive practices that damage schools and decrease learning. Given the work they do, it is a foregone conclusion that many of the folks around them are going to be part of the rich crowd that supports ed reform for everybody's kids except their own. But that is not the SF's fault. That is the nature of the work they do managing other people's money.

-- Don't shoot the messenger

Charlie Mas said...

Don't shoot the messenger, while it is true that the Seattle Foundation makes the donations that they are directed to make by the "advisors" of donor advised funds, they also have a pot of money of their own to donate from. The funds for Teach for America came from the Seattle Foundation's discretionary fund, not from donor advised funds.

By the way, folks, the Seattle Foundation's discretionary fund money comes largely from donor advised funds after the donor advisor has died.

Anonymous said...

Well, shut my mouth, Charlie! (seriously). So much for what I had understood. I thought that specific donors who wanted a degree of anonymity had donated the TfA funds to the SF, with the direction that they be donated to the District.

--Go ahead and shoot me now

Charlie Mas said...

Maybe I've got it wrong. I'll go back to the contemporaneous reports and see what it says.

I do know that it was very confused and confusing. I do remember Norm Rice, the president of the Seattle Foundation, taking a lot of credit for the gift.