FAQs for Donors and Nonprofits
Frequently Asked Questions: Donors
Q: When is the next giving event on the Pittsburgh Gives site?
On Tuesday, May 1, 2018 The Pittsburgh Foundation will host a Critical Needs Alert giving day to support organizations in Allegheny County that have food pantries as a primary part of their mission or supply food pantries. It will also support the Westmoreland County Food Bank.
Q: Why give?
In today's economic environment, nonprofit organizations need to accomplish much more with much less. In addition, nonprofits are reporting significant increases in demand for food. This year's Critical Needs Alert aligns with the Foundation's 100 Percent Pittsburgh organizing principle, which seeks to ensure that residents who live at or near the federal poverty line - at least one-third of the region's population - have access to basic needs and the region's improved economy. Gifts made during Critical Needs Alert will be amplified by $600,000 of prorated matching funds from The Pittsburgh Foundation.
Q: How do the matching funds work?
The Pittsburgh Foundation and its donors are providing $600,000 of prorated matching funds. This is NOT the same as a dollar for dollar match, that runs out once the match amount is reached. A prorated match means the funds are spread over the total number of dollars raised by all organizations. For example, if all organizations raised 1 million dollars in total during Critical Needs Alert, then the $600,000 of incentive funds from the Pittsburgh Foundation will be spread among the 1 million. In this example, organizations would receive an additional 60 cents on each dollar they raised (minus any processing or credit card fees, up to 5%).
Q: When will donations be accepted?
The day officially begins at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, May 1, 2018.
Q: When will the Critical Needs Alert program end?
11:59 p.m. on Tuesday, May 1, 2018.
Q: How may I make a donation?
Any individual or business may give online with a credit card or debit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover).
Q: May I mail in my gift or make my gift by phone?
No. To receive credit toward incentive funds all gifts must be made through The Pittsburgh Foundation Pittsburgh Gives website at http://pittsburghgives.org/
Q: Is there a size limit on gifts?
Yes. The minimum is $25.00. There is no maximum amount, but only the first $1,000 of a gift is eligible for matching funds.
Q: How will I receive acknowledgement of my gift?
All gifts made during The Pittsburgh Foundation's giving events on pittsburghgives.org are processed by CiviCore.com, a service that facilitates online donations. "The Pittsburgh Foundation" will appear as the vendor next to the charge on your credit card statement. Donors will also receive an email from pittsburghgives.org for tax purposes- you will NOT receive a receipt from the nonprofit. The nonprofits do receive the contact information of all donors so that they may send thank you letters, unless you ask to remain anonymous (an option during checkout.)
Please keep in mind that the Pittsburgh Foundation has exclusive legal control over the assets contributed, so your tax receipt will come from the Pittsburgh Foundation.
Article II Section I of the Foundation's Resolution and Declaration of Trust grants the Foundation the power to modify the restriction or condition on the distribution of funds for any specified charitable purpose or to any specified organization if in the sole judgment of the Foundation's Board of Directors, such restriction or condition becomes, in effect, "…unnecessary, undesirable, impractical or impossible…or that said circumstances have so changed as to render said expressed desires no longer wise or beneficial."
Q: What costs are associated with the program?
There is a credit card fee, as is customary with all credit card purchases, and a technology processing fee. These fees will total approximately 5 percent. Donors may opt to cover the fee. The Pittsburgh Foundation is assessing NO fees itself to provide this program. Credit card transactions are secure and backed by a PCI level 1 secure service provider certification.
Q: How can I be sure that the nonprofits receive my contribution?
After the Critical Needs Alert, The Pittsburgh Foundation will provide a grant to the nonprofits of all individual donations and incentive funds. The 501c3 charity status of all nonprofits was approved prior to participation.
Q: May my donation be refunded?
No. However, if you made a typing error in amount or selection of nonprofit organization, please contact The Pittsburgh Foundation within 48 hours of the event at 412-391-5122.
Q: If I have an issue with my donation, what do I do?
Q: Will there be a Day of Giving later in 2018?
The Pittsburgh Foundation has transitioned the Day of Giving to Pittsburgh Magazine.The magazine plans to hold a giving day for all organizations in the region on Giving Tuesday this coming November. Check www.givebigpittsburgh.com for details.
Frequently Asked Questions: Nonprofits
Q: What is The Pittsburgh Foundation's Critical Needs Alert giving event?
The Pittsburgh Foundation's Critical Needs Alert is an annual 16-hour, online opportunity for the public to donate to organizations to increase philanthropy in our region. The focus of Critical Needs Alert changes each year based on community needs in Allegheny County. This year's event will support organizations that have food pantries as a primary part of their mission or supply food pantries. It is a chance for your organization to raise additional funds!
Q: Does my organization qualify to participate in the 2018 Critical Needs Alert taking place on Tuesday, May 1, 2018?
Nonprofit organizations in Allegheny County that have food pantries as a primary part of their mission or supply food banks are eligible to participate. Westmoreland County Food Bank is also eligible. The Foundation sent invites via mail and email to eligible organizations. If your organization did not receive an invitation but you believe you are eligible, please do contact us.
Q: What costs are associated with the giving event?
It is free for nonprofits to participate. There is a credit card fee on all donations, as is customary with all credit card purchases, and a technology processing fee. These fees will total approximately 5 percent, which donors may opt to cover when they give. The Pittsburgh Foundation is assessing NO fees itself to provide this program. Credit card transactions are secure and backed by a PCI level 1 secure service provider certification.
Q: Are there matching funds available?
The Pittsburgh Foundation and its donors are providing $600,000 of prorated matching funds to encourage the public to give. This is NOT the same as a dollar for dollar match, that runs out once the match amount is reached. A prorated match means the funds are spread over the total number of dollars raised by all organizations. For example, if all organizations raised 1 million dollars in total during Critical Needs Alert, then the $600,000 of incentive funds from the Pittsburgh Foundation will be spread among the 1 million dollars raised. In this example, organizations would receive an additional 60 cents on each dollar they raised (minus any processing or credit card fees, up to 5%).
Q: I've been invited to participate in the giving event. What do I do now?
You must create a profile, or update your existing profile on this website to participate. If your organization is new to Pittsburgh Gives, please contact us. or check for an email from us with further instructions.
If your organization has an existing profile, please follow the Profile Review Guide.
Just making a quick update or change? From the pittsburghgives.org homepage, select login→nonprofit (or simply click HERE). Enter the email address and password you used when creating your profile. Can't remember your password? Select forgot password in the lower left hand corner of the login screen and follow the instructions. Still experiencing login issues or don't know your username? Please contact us.
Q: Do you provide training to help organizations prepare for Critical Needs Alert?
Yes! There are two trainings covering how to update your profile and market the event to your donors.
- There will be a training provided at the Greater Pittsburgh Food Bank on Tuesday, April 10 from 3:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.
- There will also be an online training you can participate in at your desk on Thursday, April 12 from 11 a.m.- 12 p.m.
For more information and to register, please contact Emmie Calland, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: I am looking for materials and information to help me promote Critical Needs Alert. What should I do?
Select the "Toolkit" menu under the Critical Needs Alert submenu on pittsburghgives.org and review the available materials.
Q: How will donors receive acknowledgement of their gift? Do we need to send a separate acknowledgement?
All gifts made during The Pittsburgh Foundation's giving events on pittsburghgives.org are processed by CiviCore.com, a service that facilitates online donations. Donors will receive an email from pittsburghgives.org for tax purposes- you should NOT send a separate tax receipt. However, we will not send a formal thank you to the donor, so you may choose to do that on behalf of your organization. After the event, donations can be viewed on pittsburghgives.org, except when made anonymously.
Q: I'm new to Pittsburgh Gives. Can I still register if I'm not participating in the Critical Needs Alert? How do I register my organization on pittsburghgives.org for future events?
We encourage you to register your organization, even if you're not participating in Critical Needs Alert. This allows donors and community members to see your profile, and allows the Foundation to notify you about future giving events. However, registrations for organizations ineligible for Critical Needs Alert 2018 will be on hold until June 2018. Please check back at that time to register your organization.
To be eligible to create a profile on pittsburghgives.org, outside of a giving event, you must meet the following criteria:
1. Your nonprofit must primarily serve Allegheny, Armstrong, Butler, Beaver, Fayette, Washington or Westmoreland counties.
2. You must be a registered 501c3 organization with the IRS and provide proof of your status by submitting your EIN number, and IRS determination letter (when available)
Please note: While any nonprofit organizations serving Allegheny County and the surrounding six counties may create a profile on pittsburghgives.org, your organization may or may not qualify for certain giving events based on the county your serve, the populations you serve or other criteria.
Q: I have a question that has not been answered. What do I do?
Please contact us.