Run a Campaign - Frequently Asked Questions
What is United Way of Rockland County?
The United Way of Rockland County is you, your friends and neighbors. It is a local, independent organization that is run by volunteers and staff who focus on addressing long-term solutions for health and human Services problems in Rockland County. Volunteers do everything from raising money from businesses, their employees and our entire community to evaluating what local programs should be funded. Four full-time and one part-time staff members assist over 500 volunteers who work every day to improve the lives of the people who work and live in Rockland County, New York.
Where does my donated dollar go?
If you give to the United Way of Rockland County’s Community Care Fund, your dollar is combined with hundreds of thousands more to fund programs that serve everyone from the smallest child to the most senior adult in Rockland. Whatever is raised here, stays to help here (unless you establish on our pledge form that it is to go elsewhere).
How much of the money raised goes to the programs you fund?
Because the United Way of Rockland relies on volunteers, operating costs stay low so more money can be spent on needed services. In 2011, United Way of Rockland withheld approximately 14.96% of the total campaign to help fund its operations. The Better Business Bureau has given us their “seal of approval” for many years and stated that in their opinion a charity is not spending too much on fundraising as long as the fundraising overhead is less than 33% of what is raised. These fundraising and administrative costs are much lower than if each organization, supported by United Way, were to raise the money completely on its own.
What is the history of the United Way movement?
United Way traces its history to 1887 in Denver, when a priest, two ministers and a rabbi planned the first united campaign for ten health and welfare agencies raising $21,000. But the organizations as we know them today were developed in the twenties, thirties and forties, when business and labor leaders together sought to reduce the number of charitable appeals being made to them by conducting a single, efficient, fundraising drive. United Way of Rockland County was established in 1964.
Today, there are approximately 1340 independent and autonomous United Ways in the United States and many more across the rest of the world, working with volunteers to improve their community. Approximately 32 million people, one out of three people employed in the United States, contribute to United Ways each year, making United Way the largest charity in the country.
I feel a bit hesitant asking my fellow employees to give as it feels like there may be pressure to give coming from my boss. What do I say when I give out the pledge form?
You may want to start by conveying a personal story related to how United Way helped you or someone you know. Then tell them our policy against coercion:
United Way of Rockland County believes that giving is a personal matter. Whether individuals wish to give and how much they choose is a personal choice and we keep this information confidential. All United Ways are totally opposed to any type of coercion. Fundraising success is dependant on how much potential donors know and understand the organization seeking support. Coercion only creates animosity, hinders communication and generally leads to less support. However (insert name of the company here) believes in the way in which United Way helps people, so I have been asked to give you this pledge form because we want to give an opportunity to give to every person who works here. (If there is a way that the money that the employee gives is matched by the company, you may want to mention how their donated dollar goes even further.)
How is the United Way governed?
The United Way of Rockland County is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. These volunteers come from all segments of the community. They serve on committees that plan and implement the campaign, market our service to the community, study Rockland’s needs and determine where the money that is raised is to go. This process of “citizen review” allows volunteers to be part of the entire process, to help solve community problems, meet community needs and to plan for future community requirements by making focused, result-based funding decisions.