Frequently Asked Questions
1. WHY GIVE THROUGH THE MCC?
The MCC provides donors with the opportunity to reach out and touch the lives of those in need; to sustain local, state, national and international health, educational, environmental and human service organizations; and to make a meaningful contribution to your community. And it’s so much more:
- The MCC provides a single, coordinated appeal, rather than hundreds of individual drives.
- The MCC is the way for State Employees and Retirees to participate in a local effort to meet local, national and international health and human care needs.
- Nearly 900 charities are eligible for donations.
- Pledge now and pay in 2018. Payroll deductions make it easier to afford a more generous gift, allowing you to make smaller contributions from each paycheck.
- Charities that receive MCC donations may devote their MCC funds to areas where they are needed most. That’s a value-add for the donor and the charity.
- Designated charities receive one check quarterly for multiple donations.
- Workplace giving donors give on average five times more since they are typically deducted from paychecks all year long, providing nonprofits with sustainable, unrestricted funds.
- The Campaign uses a state-of-the-art workplace and employee giving platform designed with Maryland’s Employees in mind. It is intuitive and user-friendly, and even better, it gives Employees the experience they want when giving to charity.
2. WHY SHOULD I CONTRIBUTE THROUGH THE MCC?
The MCC is a convenient, cost-efficient method to donate through the ease of payroll deduction, check, or credit card! The MCC also:
- Makes a difference: the community-at-large can identify the commitment of State Employees and Retirees, knowing that they are improving the quality of life for all Marylanders.
- Creates an opportunity: State Employees and Retirees may contribute to charitable organizations in an orderly and uniform process through one annual campaign.
- Gives you the power: you choose the amount and the charity or charities to receive your gift thus giving you the opportunity to contribute to one that touches your heart.
- Is accountable: all participating charities have been pre-screened to ensure that they are fiscally sound and that they perform the services stated.
- Is tax deductible: you get a record of your payroll deduction every payday.
- Is easy: you choose between regular payroll deduction and/or a one-time gift by check or credit card.
3. WHAT HAPPENS TO UNDESIGNATED CONTRIBUTIONS?
Undesignated contributions are distributed among MCC participating charities based upon the percentage of the designated funds they receive. If no charity designation is specified, those funds will be treated as undesignated. No charity write-ins are allowed.
4. WHAT HAPPENS IF A CHARITY I WANT TO GIVE TO ISN’T LISTED?
Charities who applied and are determined qualified by the Office of the Secretary of State as eligible participants may receive contributions. Some charities may not have applied or may not have met the eligibility requirements. For example, they may not be registered in Maryland, as required by law. Donations may only go to pre-screened participating charities.
5. HOW DOES A CHARITY BECOME PART OF THE MARYLAND CHARITY CAMPAIGN?
All 501(c)(3) charities registered and in good standing with the State of Maryland are eligible to apply to participate in the Maryland Charity Campaign. Each charity must apply annually and meet the criteria set forth in the Executive Order. All participating charities must remain in good standing, serve the State of Maryland and its residents, and have an overhead lower than 25%.
6. IF I CHANGE JOBS WITHIN THE STATE GOVERNMENT, WILL MY PAYROLL DEDUCTION CONTINUE?
Yes. If you transfer, please contact America’s Charities at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (800) 458-9505, dial “1” when prompted.
7. HOW MUCH MONEY DID THE MARYLAND CHARITY CAMPAIGN RAISE LAST YEAR?
In 2016, the Maryland Charity Campaign raised more than $2.9 million for more than 900 charities.
8. WHO ADMINISTERS THE MARYLAND CHARITY CAMPAIGN?
The Governor chairs and the Lt. Governor co-chairs the Campaign. The Secretary of State administers the Campaign for the Governor. The Charitable and Legal Services Division of the Office of the Secretary of State is responsible for carrying out the Executive Order. America’s Charities is under contract with the Secretary of State’s Office to plan, manage, and implement the Campaign in a manner consistent with the Executive Order, including the distribution of funds to charities.
9. WHO PROCESSES MY DONATIONS?
America’s Charities processes all funds pledged, including credit card donations, as part of the Maryland Charity Campaign under a contract with the Office of the Secretary of State. Your gift is credited to the Maryland Charity Campaign (and the charity you designated if you designated one).
10. DOES THE MARYLAND CHARITY CAMPAIGN SET A QUOTA ON CONTRIBUTIONS TO LARGER CHARITIES OR REDIRECT CONTRIBUTIONS TO SMALLER CHARITIES?
No, there are no quotas for contributions to larger charities. All contributions designated to eligible charities go to that charity. Undesignated dollars are distributed among the charities based upon a percentage of the designated funds they receive.
11. HOW DOES MY CHARITY RECEIVE ITS CONTRIBUTION?
After the Campaign ends, each agency is notified of how much was raised for their charity. The agency also receives a list of those donors who requested that their names be sent to the charities they supported. Distributions are sent quarterly to the charities.
12. WHAT TAX INFORMATION DO I NEED TO KNOW?
The IRS only requires a tax receipt for gifts over $250. A State Employee who made a one-time (check) gift of $250 or more will receive by mail a tax acknowledgment of their gift by January 31, 2018.
If a donor made his or her pledge online using the MCC giving portal, he or she will receive a confirmation of the pledge by email regardless of the amount so long as an email address was provided by the donor upon setting up his or her profile on the giving platform. A donor may also manage his or her pledges and/or donations within the online giving portal. A State Employee who made a gift through payroll deduction using the paper pledge form should keep a copy of the pledge form which, along with their pay stubs, will show the amount withheld for their contribution. These acknowledgments will satisfy the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requirement for substantiation of a charitable gift.
- Contributions to the Maryland Charity Campaign are tax-deductible within the limits of current federal and Maryland state law. The Maryland Charity Campaign has not provided goods or services in exchange for your contribution.
- To assure receipt of your acknowledgment please provide your full home address.
- Note that donors must check the box when donating via the pledge form or opt to share his or her contact information on the giving portal to request an acknowledgment from the charity (for any gift size).
- America’s Charities is the Operating Agency for the Maryland Charity Campaign. A copy of the most current financial statement is available upon request by contacting America’s Charities at 14150 Newbrook Drive, Suite 110, Chantilly, VA 20151, calling (800) 458.9505 (Option 1) or visiting www.charities.org/financials. Documents and information submitted to the State of Maryland under the Maryland Charitable Solicitations Act are available from the Office of the Secretary of State for the cost of copying and postage.
- Inquiries about participating agencies may be directed to the agency, the Office of the Secretary of State at (410) 260-3857, or America’s Charities at (800) 458-9505, dial “1” when prompted.
13. WHAT SECURITY MEASURES ARE IN PLACE?
Protecting your personal information is critical, and your security is our top priority. In addition to complying with the State of Maryland’s rigorous security requirements, America’s Charities is powered by Causecast, which provides state of the art security to prevent any data from being compromised. Critical data is encrypted in storage using the strongest encryption products available today. The lock icon located in your browser indicates that any data transmitted through America’s Charities powered by Causecast servers are secure in transit. There are audited policies in place designed to guarantee that no unauthorized individual gains access to America’s Charities powered by Causecast server resources.
14. HOW CAN I ACCESS MY PREVIOUS PLEDGE HISTORY?
There are four ways you can access or request a copy of your 2016 MCC pledge/payment receipt:
Option 1 = Email: email@example.com
Option 2 = Phone: (800) 458-9505, dial “1” when prompted
Option 3 = Live Chat and Donor Support Services Portal: www.charities.org/support
Option 4 = Log into your account: If you participated in the 2016 MCC, you can log into your account by visiting http://mcc.maryland.gov and click the “Give Now” button. If you have forgotten your username and password, click the “Forgot Password” link. Once you have logged into the site, click “Give” from the navigation menu and select “Giving History.” Click “View receipt” for each donation you made through the site. If you submitted a pledge using a pledge form last year, we advise that you request a copy of your receipt using option 1, 2, or 3 above.
15. WHAT HAPPENS TO MY GIFT IF THE CHARITY I DESIGNATED MY PLEDGE TO CLOSES?
The remainder of the gift will be distributed proportionately to all of the charities that received contributions in the Campaign.
16. HOW DO I GIVE BY PAYROLL DEDUCTION?
Once you are logged into the giving portal, click “Give” from the navigation menu on the left, then:
- Search for a participating MCC nonprofit by charity name, keyword, MCC Code (This is the EIN of the charity which is listed in the MCC Giving Guide), and by postal code, including charities nearest you by postal code and radius.
- When you find a charity you would like to support, click the “Give Now” link located under the charity name to start the pledge process.
- A pop-up box will appear where you can select your preferred payment method. You may make your pledge via recurring payroll deduction. For payroll deductions, the payroll frequency listed is tailored to automatically mirror your pay frequency, e.g., biweekly, monthly. Select payroll deduction and click “Next.”
- Under “Add Donation Amount” enter the amount you would like to pledge (this is the amount that will be deducted each pay period). To receive an acknowledgment from the charity, check “Yes” under “Contact Information.” You may include a short message with your donation, which will be provided to the charity.
- To donate to additional charities, click the “Add to Cart” button and your donation to the charity will be saved in your shopping cart. If you are done selecting charities to support, click the “Checkout” button to complete the pledge process.
- A “Checkout Summary” will appear, allowing you to edit your pledges and payment information.
- Once you click the “Submit” button your pledge is complete. Once you have submitted your pledge, you can edit or cancel your pledge by clicking “Give” from the navigation menu and selecting “Manage Donations.” A list of charities you have pledged to will display. Click “Edit” or “Cancel” next to the donation you would like to modify.
- Click here to view the tutorial that shows you how to use the shopping cart feature on the online giving site.
- Click here to view the tutorial that shows you how to complete a paper pledge form.
17. HOW DO I SET OR CHANGE MY TIME ZONE IN THE GIVING PORTAL?
You can do so by following these steps:
- From the dashboard click the drop-down in the upper right-hand corner next to your name and select “Profile.”
- Click “Edit Profile” (under the box where you can insert a picture).
- Use the drop-down menu under “Time Zone.” You need to search for a nearby city (e.g. New York), rather than by East, Central, or West Coast, etc. If you are on the east coast just type an “N” and you will navigate down the list to select New York more easily.
- Scroll to the bottom of the page and save your changes.
18. INFORMATION FOR CHARITIES PARTICIPATING IN THE MCC
Have a question about pledge reports or participating in the MCC? Click here.
Don’t see the answer you need? Call 800-458-9505, dial “1” when prompted; or email firstname.lastname@example.org