Does money donated to the campaign stay local?

Yes, resources raised in Escambia County stay in Escambia County, unless the donor specifically directs their donation elsewhere.

Who makes the decisions as to what area programs receive funding and how much?

You do! Seriously, volunteers and community citizens, just like you, make those decisions as part of our Community Investment Committee. Each year, once the campaign concludes, the Community Investment Committee is assembled and participates in various panels that review nonprofit programs applying for funding. As part of this rigorous review process, the Community Investment Committee reviews applications for funding, tours the site of the program, and listens to presentations from those programs. The panels then deliberate and provide a final recommendation for funding certain programs. Those recommendations are sent to the United Way of Escambia County (UWEC) Board of Directors for final approval. Community investment = community decisions!  Any donor, like you, can serve in this process.

How much of my money goes to a national organization?

One percent of the money raised in UWEC's annual campaign goes to United Way Worldwide. This small fee is paid so we may have access to global campaigns, use the worldwide logo, website, supplies, reduced training costs, etc. This 1% allows us to access discounts based on economies of scale.

We already give to community groups. Why should we also give to United Way of Escambia County (UWEC)?

We applaud your support of specific community groups that you care about and hope it continues. Did you know your donations to other community groups can be made through UWEC, allowing you to take advantage of payroll deduction? This method gives those organizations the added benefit of a consistent cash flow throughout the entire year.  In addition, giving the United way allows you to support many other vital organizations with a single gift. In doing so, you strengthen the safety net of programs that help our community today and you invest in truly effective, long-term solutions to our most challenging community problems.

Why shouldn’t I just give directly to the agencies? 

UWEC appreciates and encourages any and all charitable giving, but we do believe there are benefits to giving through UWEC. By giving to UWEC, you can help many of our nonprofit partners with ONE donation. You are probably a busy person who does not have time to follow up on the impact of your donation. UWEC can do that for you. UWEC holds partners accountable throughout the year to make sure your donation is being used to achieve results. 

UWEC will also leverage your donation through matching grants. When UWEC funds a local program, it shows community support for that program, which can attract more dollars from the federal and state government. (For example, Council on Aging - Meals on Wheels: For every $1 we invest, they can access $9.20 in matching dollars. Your $1 becomes $10!)

If I don’t like an agency, can I choose not to have my dollars go to that agency?

If you want to direct your dollars, just designate your gift to those organizations you wish to support.  You can do that easily on the UWEC pledge form.

Why does UWEC support some agencies but not others?

United Way funds local nonprofit human service agencies in the areas of health, education, and financial stability. In some cases, agencies do not receive United Way funding because of their national organization’s policies, because they do not meet charitable partnership standards, because they have not applied for funding, or because their mission and purpose do not align with community goals that our donors have declared as a priority.

I already give to my church. Why should I give to UWEC?

Many of us have obligations to our faith, but your generosity doesn’t have to stop there. We should also think about the community where we live and work. Remember, numerous services provided by UWEC community investment partners are not available through religious organizations. Your gift can also often be leveraged by local non-profits who have access to matching funds.

I can’t afford to give to UWEC.

UWEC  appreciates any gift, no matter the amount. It all adds up to make a difference in someone’s life! What’s important is participation. If everyone LIVES UNITED, it enhances the community for all of us; and if you need a hand, the agencies we support are here to serve you.

I don’t believe in being pressured to give to a charity.

Neither do we! UWEC endorses voluntary giving only. We discourage companies from using pressure to persuade employees to give. We simply ask for organizations to educate their employees about UWEC and provide them the opportunity to contribute.

I haven't ever used UWEC services. Why should I give?

UWEC funded services help everyone. A popular misconception is that only the jobless and truly "at-risk" individuals benefit from UWEC and its partner programs. Every type of person has issues and needs, some of which are marital problems, troubled teens, aging parents and children with special needs. Our services are available to all. Your UWEC contribution helps your co-workers, friends, neighbors, and family.  

UWEC is moving toward being an organization of "community impact." What does that mean?

Community impact goes beyond just being a fundraiser. We help donors and community members make an impact and create sustainable positive change in priority areas and the needs determined by our donors and community members.