CivChoice

Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about CivChoice.

What is CivChoice?

CivChoice provides a safe and secure way for individuals to manage all of their charitable giving from a single location. CivChoice's Workplace Giving Program helps businesses support their employees in their giving by providing an easy-to-use online platform for the payroll deduction process through which workplace giving programs are funded. CivChoice can also help nonprofits raise funds by providing an online platform for managing a campaign.

CivChoice for Donors

How can I fund my account?

Your account can be funded in a number of ways. If your employer is enrolled in our Workplace Giving Program, your account can be funded directly from your paycheck each time you are paid. You can also fund your account with an automated ACH withdrawal from your bank account, through recurring or one-time credit or debit card purchases, or when another user gives you a gift card.

Can I fund my account each month?

Yes. If your employer is enrolled in our Workplace Giving Program, your account can be funded directly from your paycheck each time you are paid. You can also fund your account on a recurring basis with an automated ACH withdrawal from your bank account or with a recurring credit or debit card charge.

How do I find a nonprofit that I support?

At the top of each page in CivChoice is the Charity Search option. Click here, enter the name of the nonprofit that you would like to locate, and click search.

It is helpful to also search for the city or state in which your nonprofit is located, since there can be many branches of a given nonprofit. If you do not find the organization you are looking for, try removing punctuation. Some nonprofits are registered under different names with the IRS than what they are commonly referred to as. For example, instead of searching for “god's pantry”, try “gods pantry lexington kentucky”.

Can I automatically donate to a specific nonprofit each month?

Yes. You can set up your account to make an automatic donation to one or more nonprofits each month.

Can I use CivChoice at my place of worship?

Yes. Places of worship are recognized by the IRS as nonprofit organizations and can redeem funds donated through CivChoice. Search for your place of worship using the Charity Search feature.

How does my donation reach the nonprofit?

When you donate to a verified nonprofit through CivChoice, they receive an email automatically letting them know that a donation has been made. Verified nonprofits can immediately redeem a donation and receive the funds as a deposit to their specified account in a few business days.

You can also donate to nonprofits that have yet to be verified. When an unverified nonprofit receives a donation, we contact the nonprofit to let the staff know about the donation and to provide them with everything that they need to become verified and redeem the donation. If a nonprofit does not choose to become verified and redeem the donation as an electronic transfer of funds, they will still receive your donation. CivChoice will write checks to all nonprofits that have not redeemed donations twice annually.

Are there fees associated with my account?

Individual donors are charged no fees for donating from their accounts. No fees are charged to fund your account using a credit card or TeleCheck. A small transaction fee is necessary to fund your account using PayPal.

How much of my money actually goes to a nonprofit when I make a donation via CivChoice?

93.1% of the money you donate reaches the chosen nonprofit. That's one of the highest rates in the workplace giving market. We want the nonprofits you support to receive the highest percentage of your donation possible.

My company doesn't have a CivChoice Workplace Giving Program. Can I still use CivChoice?

Absolutely. You can set up a personal account and fund it with an automated ACH withdrawal from your bank account, through recurring or one-time credit or debit card purchases, or when another user gives you a gift card. If your company adds CivChoice Workplace Giving to your benefits, your existing account will also be funded through your payroll deductions, or, if you begin working for a company that has a CivChoice Workplace Giving Program available, you can also start participating in the payroll deduction process immediately.

How can you help me get a CivChoice Workplace Giving Program started at my company?

Please contact us. Connect us with the person at your workplace that is responsible for employee benefits, and we will work with them to survey your workplace for interest and establish the program.

CivChoice for Charities

Are there fees associated with my account?

Nonprofits can redeem funds from their accounts through an electronic funds transfer at an administrative rate of 2.9%. If CivChoice sends a physical check to a nonprofit, there will be an additional $5.00 USD fee for processing and mailing. No fees are charged to nonprofits for donating with their accounts, or to set up an account to receive donations.

How do I claim my nonprofit's profile?

First, determine which person in your nonprofit will administer this program. That person will need to create a personal profile in order to claim your nonprofit's profile. Once this is done, visit your nonprofit's profile and follow the instructions at the bottom right-hand section of the page. Among the items you will need to supply are a copy of your IRS determination letter and bank account information, which you can supply by filling a form that we can provide to you.

Collecting this information is important to protect your nonprofit. Asking for these two pieces of information helps us to be sure that someone that is truly affiliated with your organization is claiming the profile. Having the bank account information allows us to not only transfer any donations to you quickly, but allows us to make sure that donations are being redeemed by the intended nonprofit recipient. This makes CivChoice a safe and secure system for both nonprofits and donors.

How do I redeem funds that have been given to me?

Once your profile is claimed, you will receive a notification via email whenever a donation is made to your organization. To redeem your funds, just click on the Withdraw Donations link in navigation bar at the top of your profile page and put the donation to work for your good cause. It's as easy as that!

Why should I use CivChoice? I've already set up accounts on several online fundraising sites — I don't have time to manage another account.

CivChoice offers a key benefit that other online fundraising platforms don't: workplace giving. Most online fundraising platforms are targeted completely to individual donors, but CivChoice makes it easy for businesses to provide workplace giving to employees via payroll deduction.

CivChoice for Businesses

Why should my company use CivChoice?

Employee satisfaction increases when a company helps employees support their favorite causes through workplace giving. However, traditional workplace giving programs are seeing a decline in participation in favor of those that allow employees greater choice in the nonprofits that they can support. CivChoice provides an online platform for workplace giving that gives employees the freedom to choose where their donations will go, while lessening the administrative burden of running a workplace giving program for the company.

Can we participate in other workplace giving programs, too?

Yes. A company is not limited to using only CivChoice for workplace giving.

What does the CivChoice Workplace Giving Program cost?

Businesses are charged no fees for providing a Workplace Giving Program to employees, or for donating with their accounts.

How much time will it take my employees to participate?

Very little. After spending a few minutes establishing their accounts, employees can choose to set up their accounts to automatically donate to one or more nonprofits each pay period, eliminating the need to log in often. If employees choose to interact more with their accounts and not set up an automatic donation, finding a nonprofit and making a donation manually only takes a minute.

Can CivChoice help us track our company's charitable donations to report to the community and to our shareholders?

If your company uses CivChoice to make donations, you'll have access to all of this information as a part of your profile. It is recommended you create a profile for your company, instead of using a personal profile to make donations on your company's behalf. This way you can view just the donations your company made, and nonprofits to which you donate will see your company listed as the donor.

Must the company decide which nonprofits employees can donate to through their workplace giving accounts?

Employees have control over who they donate to via CivChoice, which means your company doesn't have to take the time to evaluate nonprofits for employees. However, if your company has a nonprofit that it supports, we can help you implement a program that incentivizes employees to donate a portion of their funds to that nonprofit.