Where Your Money Goes
Community Solutions Fund
" Outcome Areas
> Young People
> Stable Families
> Economic Self
> Safe Neighborhoods
> Healthy People
> Positive Living
> Nonprofit Network
Service Area
> Montgomery County
> Greene County
> Preble County

2001 United Way Questions and Answers

Q. How much does United Way spend on overhead?
A. United Way’s overhead in 2002 is 16% of the total raised in the 2001 Campaign. United Way’s costs are well below the Better Business Bureau guidelines of not more than 35% for fund-raising and 50% for total overhead. In fact, United Way’s fund-raising costs are among the lowest in the community.

The United Way financial records are handled in accordance with AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants) guidelines and FASB (Financial Accounting Standards Board) standards for reporting and format for all nonprofit organizations. A volunteer Finance Committee oversees the financial operations. Currently, the Board Treasurer is a Partner with Battelle and Battelle. Every year United Way is audited by an independent accounting firm (currently Clark Schaefer & Hackett) and consistently receives a “clean” audit. United Way practices full voluntary disclosure of its financial records.
Q. What is the 8% for pledge loss?
A. Not all the money pledged in the campaign is collected due to people moving, changing jobs, or other reasons. Obviously, this money cannot be spent. The percentage of money raised but never paid has hovered around 8% for many years. If it is higher, United Way absorbs the loss. When it has been lower, United Way distributed the additional funds collected to services through the Community Solutions Fund.
Q. When I designate a specific agency, why does it only receive 80%?
A. A 12% processing fee is charged to the designated agencies. Then they share in the set-aside for pledge loss (like all agencies), which accounts for the additional 8%.
Q. What is this year’s goal?
A. The 2002 Campaign goal is $14.6 million, a $200,000 increase over the same base in 2001. Last year our local United Way raised a combined total of $17.7 million in the community-wide campaign. That included approximately $250,000 in donations to the September 11th Fund and more than $3 million raised by the area’s federal employees through the Combined Federal Campaign and by a few corporate partners that have their own separate fund raising effort and fund distribution process. United Way is continuing to partner with these organizations and celebrate their efforts. The goal, however, was set and success will be measured based on the dollars United Way can influence – when people give through the United Way.
Q. Does the United Way of the Greater Dayton Area fund the Boy Scouts?
A. Yes. United Way is committed to providing quality services to local children and youth. In 2002 our United Way is funding two Boy Scout Councils – $14,739 for the Tecumseh Council (Greene County) and $17,185 for the Miami Valley Council (Montgomery and Preble Counties.) The Tecumseh Council of the Boy Scouts is recommended to receive $18,000 and the Miami Valley Council is slated to receive $17,185 in 2003 based on the outcome of the campaign and the dollars given through the Community Solutions Fund.
Q. What is the status of the funding for the American Red Cross?
A. Leadership representatives of the United Way and Red Cross negotiated a five-year agreement that transitioned the Red Cross from its formula-based funding contract to total outcome-based funding in 2003. Based on campaign trends and fund distribution decisions, it is anticipated that total funding for the Red Cross will remain stable through the combination of allocations and designations.
Q. What is the status of the September 11th Fund?
A. The September 11th Fund received $506 million in donations. Due to this unprecedented outpouring of generosity, on January 16, 2002 Americans were asked to stop giving to the September 11th Fund and redirect their contributions to other charities and long-standing community needs. As of August 15, 2002 the Fund had made 273 grants totaling $336 million. Of this amount $289 million (86%) was cash assistance for individuals and families directly affected by the tragedy. The other $47 million (14%) was used to help affected communities and rescue efforts at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Shanksville, Pennsylvania. The remaining funds will be distributed over the next 3-5 years for long-term needs resulting from the disaster including counseling, employment assistance, health care, legal and financial advice, cash assistance, and help for school children, small businesses, and nonprofit organizations.
Q. What happened at the United Way in Washington D.C.?
A. Whenever an organization that shares the United Way name is subjected to questions of public trust, we consider it to be a very serious matter. The news reports regarding the investigation of the United Way of the National Capital Area are specifically about that United Way. The United Way movement includes approximately 1,400 community-based United Way organizations. Each is independent, separately incorporated, and governed by local volunteers. Our United Way is a totally local and autonomous organization, serving people in Montgomery, Greene and Preble Counties. We can assure you that our volunteer-driven United Way works within a set of values and a system that enables us to operate in an effective and proper manner. We hold ourselves to the highest standards of professionalism, accountability and openness in our stewardship of donor dollars and financial management.

United Way of the National Capital Area has announced it will cooperate fully with the U.S. Attorney's Office, the Chief Professional Officer has resigned, and the Board is implementing changes recommended by an independent committee headed by the former Secretary of Transportation, Rodney Slater, to address a number of issues related to fund raising, distribution, and operating expenses.
Q. What happened to the former president of United Way of America?
A. In 1992, allegations were raised at United Way of America regarding expense control practices, financial management, spin-off corporations, and the leadership style of William Aramony, the national association’s then president. Mr. Aramony was charged and convicted of conspiracy, mail and tax fraud. He served a seven-year sentence in a federal prison.

United Way of the Greater Dayton Area was very concerned about what happened at United Way of America. That’s why our board chose to stop paying dues to the national training and service center until we were convinced that they had controls in place to be fiscally accountable. And NCR made a special donation to replace any local money that might have been misused. Unfortunately, the actions of one or two individuals can seriously damage the reputation of a whole organization. As stewards of donor dollars, United Way of the Greater Dayton Area makes sure that your dollars are spent wisely through a tight set of financial accountability controls. We make sure our donors’ money helps the most people in need right here in our community.

Q. Why not give direct?
A. Making a gift to an organization through United Way can allow more of your money to go to an agency’s programs and services. If an agency had to do all the fund raising, collections and verification work, it would be more expensive. Economies of scale help United Way deliver more of your dollars to people in need. Using payroll deduction often increases one’s ability to give even more to an agency of his/her choice. And, by joining with others through the United Way campaign you support the only community-wide effort that supports a network of vital services.

Q. What if I can’t afford a big gift?
A. Every gift to United Way, no matter its size, makes a difference in our community. Many people find that giving through payroll deduction allows them to make a contribution that fits their budget. One of the great advantages of giving through United Way, and particularly through the Community Solutions Fund, is being part of a community effort that combines all of our giving to make the greatest impact on meeting the needs of people in our community.