Frequently Asked Questions
1. WHY GIVE THROUGH THE MARYLAND CHARITY CAMPAIGN (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 the effort to meet local, national and international health and human care needs.
- Nearly 900 charities are eligible for donations.
- Pledge now and pay in 2017. 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 pledge with credit card online! 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 pay day.
- Is easy: you choose between regular payroll deduction and 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 to be 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 by the executive order. All participating charities must remain in good standing, serve the state of Maryland and its residents, and have an overhead of 25% or lower.
6. IF I CHANGE JOBS WITHIN THE STATE GOVERNMENT, WILL MY PAYROLL DEDUCTION CONTINUE?
Yes. If you transfer, please contact America’s Charities at email@example.com or (800) 458-9505, then dial “1” when prompted.
7. HOW MUCH MONEY DID THE MARYLAND CHARITY CAMPAIGN RAISE LAST YEAR?
In 2015, the Maryland Charity Campaign raised $3.1 million.
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 REDIRECTS CONTRIBUTIONS TO SMALLER CHARITIES?
No, there are no quotas for contributions to larger charities. All contributions designated to eligible charities go to that charity, while 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 a tax acknowledgement by mail of their gift by January 31, 2017. 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 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 the tear-off from the bottom of the pledge card which, along with their pay stubs, which will show the amount withheld for their contribution. These acknowledgements 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 acknowledgement 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 acknowledgement 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 or visiting 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?
You can request a pledge/payment receipt from United Way of Central Maryland two ways:
15. 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, key word, MCC Agency 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 on the charity name.
- In the “Make a Donation” box, enter the total amount of money you would like to donate to the charity and then click “Donate Now” to continue the pledge process.
- Select your preferred payment type. Once you do, an “Add Donation Amount” section will come into view. You may make your pledge via recurring payroll deduction.
- For payroll deductions, the payroll frequency listed is tailored to mirror your pay frequency, e.g. biweekly, monthly.
- Please note that you must complete your contact information (whether you wish to receive an acknowledgment of your gift or remain anonymous) in order to complete the pledging process. Once you do, hit the red button to “Donate” and your pledge is complete. You will be able to see your gift (on the left side under Manage Payroll Donations) where you will also able to edit or cancel your pledge.
For more instructions on how to give, click here.
16. 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 dropdown 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, 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.
Don’t see the answer you need? Call 800-458-9505, dial “1” when prompted; or email firstname.lastname@example.org