GENERAL INFORMATION

What is East Texas Giving Day?
East Texas Giving Day is an 18-hour online event that provides critical funding for our area nonprofits. East Texas Communities Foundation is partnering with area nonprofits to give thousands of donors from every community in East Texas a chance to raise funds for local needs.

The purpose of an area-wide Giving Day is to bring the region together on one day and as one community, raising money and awareness for East Texas nonprofits. This initiative, organized by East Texas Communities Foundation (ETCF), provides citizens across ETCF's 32-county service area an easy platform to support the mission of local nonprofits that serve our communities. 

When is East Texas Giving Day?
Tuesday, April 24, 2018, from 6:00 a.m. to midnight, Central Standard Time.

Where is East Texas Giving Day?
East Texas Giving Day is an online event.  Most of the activity will take place via our EastTexasGivingDay.org website.

  • In addition, East Texas Communities Foundation and some nonprofits are hosting donation stations throughout the region on April 24, 2018. Click here to find an event near you. 
  • News and updates will be posted regularly to social media sites:
    Facebook: facebook.com/SimplifiedGiving 
    Twitter #ETGivingDay

Why give on Giving Day?
The purpose of an area-wide Giving Day is to bring the region together on one day and as one community, raising money and awareness for East Texas nonprofits. This initiative, organized by East Texas Communities Foundation (ETCF), provides citizens across ETCF's 32 county service area an easy platform to support the mission of local nonprofits that serve that serve our communities.

One of the pillars of ETCF's mission is to provide simple ways for donors to achieve their charitable goals. By providing an 18-hour online fundraising event, ETCF offers the public an opportunity to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for local nonprofits.

How do you determine which nonprofits are eligible to participate in East Texas Giving Day?
To participate in East Texas Giving Day, a nonprofit must be located in, or primarily serve one of the 32 counties in East Texas Communities Foundation's (ETCF) service area. The 32 counties served by ETCF include: Anderson, Angelina, Bowie, Camp, Cass, Cherokee, Delta, Franklin, Freestone, Gregg, Harrison, Henderson, Hopkins, Houston, Lamar, Leon, Marion, Morris, Nacogdoches, Panola, Rains, Red River, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, Shelby, Smith, Titus, Trinity, Upshur, Van Zandt and Wood.

In addition they must be in good standing with the IRS. Each nonprofit's page will include a link to their own website, mission statement and information about their work in the community. This content is intended to provide donors with more detailed information on the organization's goals and use of its charitable dollars.

Does approval to participate in East Texas Giving Day mean that East Texas Communities Foundation endorses each participating nonprofit's charitable purpose and programs?
East Texas Giving Day is proud to support thousands of donors as they come together on one day to give to their favorite nonprofits or to new causes near to their heart. We encourage you to find organizations that align with your passions and values. While ETCF does verify the charitable status of every nonprofit that participates in East Texas Giving Day, ETCF does not screen or select organizations on the basis of their charitable purposes or their missions. Giving Day eligibility is based solely on providing services in on 32-county service area and an organization's current status as a recognized Section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt public charity. Therefore, approval of an organization's participation in East Texas Giving Day does not constitute an endorsement of the organization or its mission by ETCF or any Giving Day partners.

Each Giving Day nonprofit page provides the organization's mission, images and links to their social media channels. Each nonprofit's page also includes a link to their website to provide you with more detailed information on the organization's mission and use of its charitable dollars.

How much money does ETCF make on East Texas Giving Day? 
None.  ETCF has invested significant staff time and financial resources  into the creation and execution of East Texas Giving Day to provide area nonprofits a simplified platform to reach new donors.  ETCF will receive no compensation for hosting East Texas Giving Day. Each participating nonprofit will pay a $100 registration fee. This registration fee will be used to promote the event regionally.

DONORS

Who can donate?
Any individual with a credit or debit card and access to the internet.

What forms of donations are accepted?
Credit card, debit card and echeck donations will be accepted April 24, 2018 from 6:00 a.m. to midnight by using MasterCard, Visa, Discover or American Express online at  www.EastTexasGivingDay.org.  Donations made via check or cash will be accepted by contacting East Texas Communities Foundation at 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823. You can also contact any participating charity as they can assist you with gifts made by check or cash.  Donor-advised fund-holders at ETCF may recommend grants from their funds by submitting a signed and dated grant recommendation form, by fax, to 903-533-0258 or emailed to mlsmith@etcf.org or etcf@etcf.org

Please call ETCF if you have questions about donating on East Texas Giving Day.

Are gifts tax-deductible?
All donations are tax deductible and irrevocable and will be for the unrestricted use by your chosen charity. Donations cannot be designated for a specific program at a nonprofit, although a participating nonprofit is free to indicate that it will use donations that day for a specific purpose. Donors will receive an immediate tax receipt via email at the conclusion of the donation process.

Is there a minimum gift?
The minimum donation amount is $20. There is no maximum donation. All gifts made on www.easttexasgivingday.org are non-refundable.

Can my gift be anonymous?
Yes. When you make your gift, simply check the anonymous button and the nonprofit will not receive your contact information. You will however still receive your gift acknowledgment letter for the gift from ETCF via email.

How do I make a donation?
Starting at 6:00 a.m. on April 24th, go to www.easttexasgivingday.org and use a credit or debit card to donate to your nonprofit(s) of choice.  You will have a full 18 hours to make a donation and will have the ability to search for nonprofits by name, county, city or type of charity.  Participating nonprofits will have a profile page on www.easttexasgivingday.org where you can learn more about the charity and initiate a donation. The minimum gift is $20 however there is no maximum.

I want to give before April 24th! Is there a way to do that? 
Yes. Donors can log onto www.easttexasgivingday.org beginning April 9, 2018 to schedule their giving day gift. Donors complete the donation form and select the organization(s) of their choice. Transactions will not be processed until April 24, 2018.   

How much of the donation goes to the nonprofit?
Approximately 94% of each donation will go directly to the nonprofit. By selecting 'yes' to cover the fees, your donation will be increased by 5.09% (3.0% technology cost and 2.09% credit card fee or 40 cent echeck fee). If you elect to pay by echeck, your donation would still be increased by 5.09%, however any bank processing fee above the 40 cents will go to the nonprofit. East Texas Communities Foundation does not receive any portion of the transaction fees.

What if I made a mistake when I made my gift?
If you gave to the wrong organization we can correct that for you immediately on Giving Day, April 24th. Please email etcf@etcf.org with your name, gift amount and the details of your gift. You can also phone our office at 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823 on Giving Day, April 24th. If you submitted the wrong gift amount, we will correct that for you and issue a partial refund if necessary. Please contact us immediately to resolve these issues before the conclusion of Giving Day.   

Can I make a gift "In Honor of" or "In Memory of" someone?
On the donation form, you may choose that your gift was made in honor of or in memory of someone and that information will be passed to the nonprofit.

Are donations safe and secure?
Yes. The www.EastTexasGivingDay.org  website is powered by Civicore, and is a secure PCI-Level 1 compliant site for donating to charities. Donors can be sure their personal information is protected when donating through our www.EastTexasGivingDay.org . Neither Civicore, nor East Texas Communities Foundation, will store, nor have access to a donor's credit card information. East Texas Communities Foundation will not share contact or other private information with anyone or any organization other than the receiving nonprofit. If the donor chooses to have their donation remain anonymous, no personal identifying information will be shared with the nonprofit.

What if I can't find my favorite nonprofit on the website?
If you can't find them on www.EastTexasGivingDay.org, they are not signed up to participate, and/or they do not qualify to participate in East Texas Giving Day. The agency must meet all preset eligibility requirements.  Nonprofits have until 5:00 p.m. on March 7, 2018 to register to participate. If you did not see your favorite charity online during East Texas Giving Day, than we encourage supporters to make a donation to them via mail and encourage the nonprofit to participate in East Texas Giving Day next year.

What is a "unique donor"?
For the purposes of awarding prizes, a unique donor is one individual. Multiple donations from one donor to the same nonprofit will count as one gift.  Organizations cannot donate to themselves.

Can I give to multiple organizations?
YES!  Donations can be made to single or multiple organizations with the ability to donate in a single transaction.  Only the nonprofits registered on www.EastTexasGivingDay.org may receive donations during this event.

Can I donate from my Smartphone or tablet?
Yes. Our technology provider has a "mobile optimized platform" that will make it easy to make a donation on www.EastTexasGivingDay.org  using a smart phone or tablet.

What browser is supported?
East Texas Giving Day supported browsers include: Internet Explorer 10 and above, the latest two versions of Safari, Chrome, Firefox, iPhone/iPad I0S 7 or later and Android.  Older internet web-browsers do not provide sufficient security for donors and are not supported. If you have an unsupported browser and wish to make a donation, please contact our office at 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823.

May I use my Giving Day donation to buy event tickets, museum memberships, or other things that provide me a benefit?
No, donations may not be used to pay for anything that results in a "more than incidental"  benefit to the donor including dinner tickets, membership fees, golf tournament fees, admission tickets, raffle tickets, event sponsorships or other similar gifts.

Beyond a donation, how can I support the nonprofit on Giving Day?
After donations have been made, supporters can spread the word among friends about East Texas Giving Day and the good work nonprofits do in our community. We invite you to share your Giving Day story at Facebook.com/SimplifiedGiving or on Twitter #ETGivingDay.  Nonprofits may also have online media campaigns or other ideas to promote the day. Many nonprofits in the region will be hosting special activities for donors on Giving Day. 

I have a Donor-Advised Fund at ETCF. Can I make my donation from that fund?
Yes. Donations made via ETCF donor-advised funds will not be subject to the credit card processing fees. Grant recommendation forms must be signed and dated by the fund holder. Forms may be faxed to 903-533-0258 or emailed to mlsmith@etcf.org or etcf@etcf.org on Giving Day or prior to Giving Day with special instructions to apply to Giving Day totals for the grantee.

How will donors be recognized?
Donors will receive an immediate acknowledgement and tax receipt from ETCF via email.  Nonprofits will have the opportunity to thank donors as well and let them know how their donation will be used.  Donors can choose to make anonymous donations and will still receive a tax receipt, but will not receive an acknowledgement from the nonprofit organization.

How can I find out more about East Texas Communities Foundation?         
Visit our web site at www.etcf.org or call 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823.

NONPROFITS

What organizations are eligible to participate?
Organizations are required to set up a Giving Day profile on www.EastTexasGivingDay.org site by March 7, 2018. Eligible organizations must be public charities as described in Section 170(b)(1)(A) of the Internal Revenue Code (i.e. churches, schools, hospitals, government entities and publicly supported 502(c)(3) organizations that are located in, or primarily serve, one of the 32 counties in East Texas Communities Foundation's (ETCF) service area. The 32 counties served by ETCF include: Anderson, Angelina, Bowie, Camp, Cass, Cherokee, Delta, Franklin, Freestone, Gregg, Harrison, Henderson, Hopkins, Houston, Lamar, Leon, Marion, Morris, Nacogdoches, Panola, Rains, Red River, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, Shelby, Smith, Titus, Trinity, Upshur, Van Zandt and Wood.

What is the deadline for a nonprofit to participate?
Nonprofits must register by March 7, 2018 to participate in East Texas Giving Day.

How does my organization register to participate? 
Fill out the Nonprofit Registration Form by clicking the link on the home page of the www.EastTexasGivingDay.org site. Each nonprofit will be reviewed to confirm qualifications to participate have been met. After you have been approved to participate, you will receive a second email with instructions to complete your online profile and submit your $100 registration fee. Once the organizations profile has been completed and payment has been received, your organization will be approved to appear on the Giving Day site. Nonprofits have until March 7, 2018 to register to participate in Giving Day. You may also pay your registration fee by completing the echeck process online or by sending a check to East Texas Communities Foundation, East Texas Giving Day Registration,  315 N Broadway, Suite 210, Tyler, Texas 75702. Questions? Just call us at 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823.

Our nonprofit has never participated in Giving Day but we want to this year. What do we need to do?
Nonprofits who are new to Giving Day must submit an inquiry prior to  February 7, 2018. Each nonprofit will be reviewed to confirm qualifications to participate have been met. After you have been approved to participate, you will receive a second email with instructions to complete your online profile and submit your $100 registration fee. You will have until March 7, 2018 to pay your $100 registration fee. 

Is there a cost to participate?
Yes. Each nonprofit must submit $100.00 in order to participate in Giving Day. This registration fee will be used to promote the event regionally.

How much money does ETCF make on East Texas Giving Day? 
None. ETCF has invested significant staff time and resources into the creation and execution of East Texas Giving Day to provide area nonprofits a simplified platform to raise annual support and reach new donors.  Other than nonprofit registration fees which are to be used to offset some of the Giving Day technology costs and promotion of the event, ETCF will not receive no compensation for hosting East Texas Giving Day.

Why should my nonprofit participate?
East Texas Giving Day allows nonprofits an opportunity to raise awareness about their mission, reach new donors and build online fundraising skills.  Nonprofits should consider East Texas Giving Day as another component of their annual giving strategy. Like any tool, it's as effective as you want to make it. A nonprofit can invest as little or as much time, energy and resources in promoting the event to its supporters and potential supporters as it wants. The more the nonprofit invests, the more return it will see. Nonprofits are also eligible to receive cash incentive prizes during the event. Communities which have held Giving Days in prior years report a significant percentage of new donors based on the community awareness and social media influence.

Can Nonprofits host their own special event on Giving Day?
Yes! We encourage nonprofits to plan an event, partner with other participating nonprofits, or connect with local businesses to raise awareness about East Texas Giving Day on April 24th.  The more a nonprofit promotes their participation in East Texas Giving Day, the more it will benefit.

Can Nonprofits encourage donations by giving away prizes or free gifts?
All donations made during East Texas Giving Day must be 100% tax deductible. Nonprofits cannot offer a "more than incidental" benefit for donations made during the event. Small, fun promotional items should be ok to give but consult the IRS or your accountant to determine if a give-a-way item such as a keychain, coffee mug or t-shirt meets these requirements before ordering such items to hand out on Giving Day.

Can staff, volunteers and board members donate to the organization they are associated with?
Yes, as long as they use a personal credit or debit card and not one associated with the nonprofit they are giving to.

When will nonprofits receive their donations from East Texas Giving Day?
Nonprofits will receive all net donations and prize money 6 to 8 weeks after East Texas Giving Day in a single check from East Texas Communities Foundation.

Will donations be for unrestricted purposes?
All donations are tax deductible and irrevocable and will be for the unrestricted use by the charity. Donations cannot be designated for a specific program at a nonprofit, although a participating nonprofit is free to indicate that it will use donations that day for a specific purpose.

Is there a minimum gift?
The minimum donation amount is $20. There is no maximum donation. All gifts made on www.easttexasgivingday.org are non-refundable.

Will the nonprofit be required to send gift acknowledgment letters to donors?
No. The donor will immediately receive an emailed tax receipt confirming the gift from East Texas Communities Foundation.  East Texas Communities Foundation does encourage nonprofits to acknowledge donations by following-up with donors and sharing how their contribution helps to fulfill their mission.

Will nonprofits receive donor information for acknowledgements?
Yes. ETCF will provide nonprofits with the contact information of all donors to their organization and the amount donated unless the donor asks to remain anonymous.

How can I find out more about East Texas Communities Foundation?         
Visit our web site at www.etcf.org or call 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823.

What if I still have questions about East Texas Giving Day?
Please call Kyle Penney or Holly McFarlin at 903-533-0208 or toll free 866-533-3823 or feel free to email etcf@etcf.org.