FAQs for Nonprofit Organizations

What is Give Local?

Hosted by the Community Foundation of South Puget Sound, Give Local is a two-week online giving campaign to support nonprofits that serve Thurston, Mason, and Lewis Counties. Participating nonprofits will have their own Story (campaign) page to design and use to share their work with our communities. All Stories will be accessible to community members who can view and donate to the causes they care about through the Give Local platform.

Give Local 2021 will begin November 8 and end on November 19.

What is Early Giving?

The week leading up to Give Local is what we call “Early Giving”. Early Giving is a time for participating nonprofits to directly reach out to their most loyal donors and/or volunteers to help jumpstart their Give Local campaign. It also serves as a way to help strengthen relationships between nonprofits and community members by using personalized messaging.

Early Giving 2021 will begin November 1 and end on November 7.

What organizations are eligible to participate?

Organizations who are eligible to participate in Give Local 2021 must fit all of the requirements below or have explicit approval from the Community Foundation:

  • Be a registered 501(c)(3) or have a fiscal sponsor with a 501(c)(3) - Must maintain 501(c)(3) status throughout event and subsequent fund distribution period
  • Be current on tax filings (990)
  • Registered with the Secretary of State as a Charity (unless exempt) - Must maintain charity status throughout event and subsequent fund distribution period
  • Have a minimum of one-year financial history - Exceptions may be made for organizations with fiscal sponsors
  • A minimum of 1/3 of the organization’s programs (this could be determined by participants or budget expenditures) must take place in Thurston, Mason, and/or Lewis Counties

What is required for an organization to participate?

By registering for Give Local, your organization agrees to:

  • Publicize an organizational nondiscrimination policy or agree in writing to abide by the Community Foundation’s nondiscrimination policy
  • Agree to use all money raised during Give Local – which includes donations, Bonus funds, and prize money – to benefit Thurston, Mason, and/or Lewis Counties through programs which comply with Community Foundation’s nondiscrimination policy
  • Have completed a Direct Deposit (ACH) form with the Community Foundation by October 1, 2021
  • Pay registration fee of $35.00 per organization

**Note: Community Foundation of South Puget Sound reserves the right to decline any organization permission to participate in the Give Local program at any time, for any reason, in its sole discretion.

Organizations that are not eligible to participate in Give Local:

  • Private foundations (filing a 990PF)
  • Support organizations with charity status 509(a)(3-4)
  • Government or educational entities with taxing authority, or divisions primarily funded by those entities with tax authority
  • Chambers of Commerce
  • Cemeteries
  • Foreign organizations
  • Individuals
  • Religious organizations when funds would be used in whole or in part to further the organization’s religious purposes
  • Organizations who intend to use funds raised for regranting purposes

How much time will I need to commit to participate in Give Local?

There is no magic number to how much time nonprofit participants need to commit to have a successful Give Local campaign. The amount of time you need to commit is based off of a few factors such as your availability and what you hope to gain from this experience. Some participants have enough staff or volunteers to dedicate several hours a week preparing for Give Local, while others spend a couple hours the week before Early Giving and make a couple of social media posts during the two-weeks dedicated to Give Local. Both can be successful in raising funds, raising awareness, and/or gaining new donors.

One way to consider how much time to commit to Give Local is viewing your Story page as a temporary social media account. You will have to put in time to add photos, videos, text, and contact information to create the core of your page - how much you choose to include here is up to you and what you want community members to know about your organization. Then you will have to put in time to promote your page through sharing the link on other platforms such as email, other social media pages, and/or your organization's website. There are additional features that you can use to help engage with community members such as Updates (blog posts), Challenges, Sponsor Matches, and Rewards which can boost your Give Local success but take additional time commitments.

How does the “Bonus Fund” work?

Every dollar raised by your organization will be stretched with a Bonus Fund generously provided by a donor. The Bonus Fund is a proportional match wherein the fund proportionally increases the value of every dollar donated. Every nonprofit that raises money during Give Local will get some portion of the Bonus Fund.

Here's how it works – Example with a $100,000 Bonus Fund:

  • If a nonprofit organization receives 5% of the total amount of money raised during Give Local 2021, that same nonprofit receives 5% of the $100,000 Bonus Fund (0.05 x $100,000 = $5,000).
  • No organization will receive more than $7,500 of the Bonus Fund
  • For example, if your organization raises 20% of all the funds raised during Give Local, your match will be capped at $7,500. This “cap” is in place to ensure that all participating nonprofits will get the chance to benefit from the Bonus Fund.

Is there a fee to participate in Give Local?

Yes, there is a one-time registration fee of $35. While Give Local has grown in the number of nonprofit participants and technology costs have risen over the years, it is still imperative that we keep Give Local as accessible to nonprofits as possible. If your organization is unable to pay the registration fee, please contact Melissa Rosscup at mrosscup@thecommunityfoundation.com to make other arrangements.

Can donors send in checks during Give Local?

We encourage online donations to the Give Local platform, but cash, checks, stock, and other types of gifts will be accepted. The Community Foundation will manually add offline donations made during Give Local to the nonprofit organization’s online total. Gifts must be received by Friday, November 19 at 5:00pm to count toward an organization’s Give Local total. For questions, call us at (360) 705-3340.

Checks must be made out to “Community Foundation of South Puget Sound” and please write the name of the organization you’d like to support in the memo.

Checks may be mailed to:

  • Community Foundation of South Puget Sound
    (please write the organization you’d like to support in the memo)
    212 Union Avenue SE, Suite 102
    Olympia, WA 98501

How much of each donation goes to my organization?

All of it! With every online donation, there is a standard transaction fee assessed by the credit card company and fees associated with the Give Local online giving platform. However, thanks to the generous support of our Give Local presenting sponsors, credit card and platform fees will be covered so that 100% of the donations will be passed along to the nonprofit.

Does the Community Foundation receive any portion of the donations or fees?

No, the Community Foundation of South Puget Sound does not receive any portion of your donation or the related transaction fees. However, the Community Foundation will be eligible for donations through their own Give Local Story page.

When will organizations receive their Give Local contributions?

Participating organizations will receive online donations through an online payment processor. The Community Foundation will process check donations and Bonus Funds earned, mailing checks for the total by December 31, 2021.

Will my organization receive donor information, so that we can thank our supporters?

Yes. You will receive donor information during and after the event. We strongly encourage you to thank donors for their support.

Is there a limit to the amount I can raise through Give Local?

No. You have the ability to set any goal you want. No organization will receive more than $7,500 from the Bonus Fund.

What if I don’t reach my goal?

That’s OK. Unlike many crowdfunding sites, the Community Foundation does not penalize you for not reaching your goal. All donations made through your fundraising page will be passed along to the designated nonprofit organization.

What is the "South Puget Sound Nonprofit Directory?"

In an effort to help promote awareness of the amazing work nonprofits throughout our South Puget Sound region are doing, the Community Foundation has begun utilizing a year-round feature through the Give Local platform to showcase past Give Local participants. The directory uses the nonprofit Story pages from the most recently ended Give Local campaign, minus the ability to donate, which can be updated by nonprofits and shared during the Give Local off-season.

What if I have other questions?

Please contact Melissa Rosscup at

or call 360-705-3340 with additional questions about Give Local.