How To Get Your Company Involved In Your Giving Circle

Jul 21, 2023

When it comes to charitable giving, we all want to have as much impact or reach with our resources as we can. Giving Circles are a unique model of giving that brings people together around a common cause or issue and harnesses the power of the group to pool their resources and donate as a collective.

Inherently social and democratic, Giving Circles are a model of giving well suited to our times: Flexible and adaptable, they give people a reason to come together, and the potential to grow the group and scale its impact is limitless, depending on your vision. If you’re looking to expand the impact of your Giving Circle, one way is to get your workplace involved.

How and Why to Involve Your Workplace in Your Giving Circle

If you’ve started a Giving Circle and want to develop it, support from your employer could go a long way. Corporate giving programs are a benefit to employees as well as employers; according to this 2023 global survey, the majority of Gen Z and millennial workers make career decisions based on their values. A 2016 study found that 64% of millennials consider a company’s social and environmental commitments when thinking about where to work. At a time when Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is an important factor for companies to consider, charitable programming shines a positive light on the brand. And businesses with a robust employee giving program are better positioned to attract talent and increase employee engagement.

Many companies have charitable giving programs that take a number of forms—some support employee-directed donations, enabling workers to give to the issues and organizations they care about. And some will even cover fees for joining a networking group—these can include Grapevine! Because Grapevine’s giving platform gives donors a receipt directly after you make your first donation, it’s simple to submit that receipt to your company for reimbursement.

1. Engaging with Employee Giving at Your Company

The best way to engage your workplace in your Giving Circle is by asking HR about your company’s policies around employee giving. For a company with robust CSR or charitable giving programs, there are typically many ways to engage—whether it’s participating in paid volunteer days, an employee-directed giving campaign, or taking advantage of your workplace’s matching gift programs.

2. The Power of Gift Matching

Matching gift programs are one popular and simple way for companies to support their team members in giving back to the causes they care about, while amplifying their own impact. It’s also an underutilized benefit: According to DoubletheDonation, a company that works with companies to maximize gift matching, anywhere from $4 billion to $7 billion in matching donation funds goes unclaimed every year. Fully tapped, those resources could have immense impact for nonprofits and the causes they serve.

Typically in a matching gift program, companies provide a one-to-one match, which means they’ll match each dollar you give with another dollar. This is an excellent way not only to leverage your workplace to increase your impact, but to incentivize new Giving Circle members from your workplace to join your group. The more you give, the more your company will match.

3. Ways for Companies to Track and Match your Donations on Grapevine

However you’ve involved your workplace in your giving, Grapevine’s fast and flexible process for accepting donations will make it easy to collect the funds. There are a few ways to use the Grapevine platform to give through your company.

Through company donation portals, like Benevity: If your company uses a donation portal, you can make an employee-directed gift directly to Grapevine that way. Make the donation to Grapevine Giving Foundation, EIN #87-2389502. Make sure to include your Giving Circle name as the purpose for your gift. And if your company is matching your donation, these types of portals enable that, as well.

Directly on Grapevine: You can use the company credit card to make a donation directly on Grapevine. Just head to your group page, select "Donate" and then add the payment information for your corporate card. You can also send the donation page URL directly to your manager or HR/CSR representative to make a payment via credit card or ACH direct deposit. If you've secured a match from your employer, there’s an option on the checkout page to include the name of the employee linked to the donation match so that Giving Circle leaders know to whom they should attribute the donation.

With a check: Although making donations through the platform is the preferred method of donating through Grapevine, employers can make checks payable to Grapevine Giving Foundation and include the Giving Circle name as the purpose, and employee or member name as the affiliation. Then mail the check to: Grapevine Giving Foundation, P.O. Box 23752, New York, NY 10087-3752. All off-platform donations are subject to a 3% processing fee. There’s more detailed information about donating off-platform on our FAQ page.

Regardless of the type of gift being made through the workplace, all donations will be safe and secure. The Grapevine Giving Foundation, EIN #87-2389502, is Grapevine’s affiliated 501(c)3 that facilitates all donations, provides immediate tax receipts that can be tracked within a Grapevine account, and enables a quick, flexible process for giving and receiving donations. All donations are secured by bank-level encryption.

4. Grow Your Giving Circle at Work

Once you’ve learned about your workplace’s policies and secured support from leadership, consider asking co-workers and colleagues to join. Collective giving within the workplace can foster a sense of belonging and shared purpose, which strengthens company culture and can boost workplace satisfaction.

Tapping into the resources at work might be one of the simplest ways to accelerate the change you’re trying to make with your Giving Circle - whether it’s one you’ve created or one you’ve joined. Even something as simple as asking your workplace to highlight your Giving Circle on their social feeds or in a company newsletter creates social proof of your efforts, puts your Giving Circle in front of new prospective members, and reflects well on your place of work.

Whether you’re looking to link your Giving Circle to your workplace’s giving programs, leverage your company’s matching gift program, or engage coworkers and build your membership (or all of the above), engaging your place of work can be an effective tactic for growth. Or maybe you’re thinking about starting a Giving Circle specifically for your workplace or ERG. Regardless of your approach, Grapevine streamlines the process for you, your Giving Circle, and your employer, making collective giving at work a win-win for impact.