The Heart of Alabama Combined Federal Campaign kickoff event will take place Monday at 9 a.m. at The Landing.
The Heart of Alabama CFC campaign runs Monday-Nov. 14, according to Heart of Alabama CFC Director Beverly Arnold.
“We invited local, national and international charities to be on hand to answer questions about the work their charities do,” said Arnold of the kickoff event. “We are trying to fill up all three rooms over there so federal employees and military members can have all their questions answered. Everyone who is thinking about giving this year should come to the kickoff and ask questions.
“One thing we are focusing on this year is informing people about online giving,” said Arnold. “Last year, My Pay became available to donate to CFC.”
The CFC link for My Pay is on the main menu under Pay Changes after logging in.
“Another option with giving online is the new Universal Giving program (see associated story to the right), where you can give to a local charity that might not be located in the Heart of Alabama campaign area,” she added. “There are about 20,000 charities available through CFC. Those charities include local, national and international charities. Every donor gets to choose what charity they want to give to.
“The combined Federal Campaign is the world’s largest workplace giving option for federal and postal employees and military members,” said Arnold, adding that the Heart of Alabama campaign area covers 30 counties in Alabama. “It includes Maxwell Air Force Base, the Tuscaloosa Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the Tuskegee VA Hospital. We have about 60,000 federal employees in our campaign area.”
The Heart of Alabama campaign raised just under $1 million dollars last year, Arnold said. “This year we hope to reach one million.”
A donation thermometer will be set up next to Sgt. Ted E. Bear on post so people can track the donation progress, said Arnold. “People need to keep in mind that the thermometer goals are for the entire Heart of Alabama campaign area, and not just Fort Rucker.
“We have a board of directors called the Local Federal Coordinating Committee, who meet and make all the decisions for the local CFC, like the campaign goals, how it will be run and its duration,” she said. “Our office trains project officers and key workers in the federal offices, military installations and post offices that do the boots-on-the-ground work of informing donors and collecting donations.
“This year, 148 people volunteered to be CFC project officers or alternates in their organizations on Fort Rucker to help people to donate to charities,” she explained.
Universal Giving offers new opportunities
A new Combined Federal Campaign program, which was tested in this area over the last three years, allows donors to choose a localized charity that might be on the other side of the country.
The Heart of Alabama Combined Federal Campaign was part of the pilot program for the Universal Giving option for CFC donations, according to Beverly Arnold, Heart of Alabama CFC director.
“CFC Universal Giving permits donors to pledge to any approved local CFC charity, no matter where the donors or charity are located,” said Arnold, adding that previously, only local charities within the campaign area were available to donors. “If you fell in love with a local charity when you were living at Joint Base Lewis-McChord (Washington), you can still donate to it this year after your move to Fort Rucker.
“People should take a few minutes and think about things that have happened in their lives,” she said. “If they have adopted a pet, had a relative diagnosed with cancer, or grew up as a Girl Scout, they will find a charity that affected their life to give to.
“If you want to use Universal Giving, you can visit the Heart of Alabama CFC website because the local charities listed in the printed publication are local to that area,” she added. “But the website is easy to use, just search for the name of your favorite charity.”
More than 39,000 local charities outside of the Heart of Alabama area are available through Universal Giving. These local charities are members of all the CFC campaigns across the country, she said.
“The charities that are available through CFC are approved by federal employees,” said Arnold. “The board of directors either approves or denies the charities. There is a pretty strenuous application process before a charity is approved.”
To use Universal Giving, visit the Heart of Alabama CFC website at www.heartofalabamacfc.org, click on Search Charities, and enter the name of the charity or the five-digit charity code. When the results are displayed, charities local to the Heart of Alabama will have a green heart icon. Charities not listed as a local Heart of Alabama charity will have an orange UG icon. Donors can now donate to either or both.
Posted in the Army Flier – September 10, 2014