UW News

January 26, 2006

Combined Fund Drive raises record $1.6 million — but online, the giving can continue

UW News

The 2005 Combined Fund Drive has ended, and with a record-setting total, too. But with a new Web site and online giving option, helping charitable agencies under the CFD umbrella can continue year-round.

The 2005 drive ran through the fall and into December. In all, the drive raised a total of $1,605,395 in pledges, the highest amount ever, said Kerri Everly, fund drive coordinator — and a total that beat the hoped-for goal of $1.6 million.

“We think it was very successful. And we feel that more faculty and staff are aware of the drive this year due to our increased visibility,” Everly said.

She said this heightened presence was due in large part to the UW Human Resources marketing team’s efforts to publicize the event and the help of a highly placed friend. “The campaign sponsor was Executive Vice President Weldon Ihrig,” Everly said. “And his support made a huge difference in getting the word out.”

Each year, it seems, the totals rise. In 2003, the UW campus community donated a total of $1.41 million, and in 2004 the giving totaled $1.486 million.

Everly said exact numbers for online giving were not available, but evidence shows the online option is successfully attracting donors. That’s shown in part because while giving was up, “there was a significant decrease in the amount of (paper) pledge forms we received.”

And this year, at least, it seems that slightly fewer people made donations even while the total rose. About 5,000 people donated in 2003 compared with about 4,650 in 2005.

One of the strong elements of marketing for CFD giving is the state’s pledge that about 105 percent of the donation goes to its intended goal. Everly said that’s paid for with interest earnings on funds received and by using portions of the unspecified fund — donations not earmarked for a particular area — to make up the match. “An average amount of 5 percent is added for every dollar donated to those charities that are part of the official state charity guide.” Write-in donations to charitable agencies not on that list, while sent to the agency requested, are not supplemented in that way.

The Combined Fund Drive’s main fund, as usual, garnered the most in donations because of its umbrella nature. Everly listed the agencies that filled out this year’s top 10, in descending order. After the CFD fund itself, came United Way of King County, Northwest Harvest/Ecumenical Metropolitan Ministry, Planned Parenthood of Seattle/King County, Planned Parenthood of Western Washington, Doctors Without Borders USA Inc., University District Food Bank/University District Service League, the Nature Conservancy of Washington, Earth Share of Washington and the Planned Parenthood Federation of America Inc,

To learn more about the Combined Fund Drive, to view the state CFD Charity Guide or to give online, visit the Combined Fund Drive Web site at http://www.washington.edu/uwcfd/