Many Oregon companies are looking beyond their checkbooks to find creative ways to give. Here are some ideas for supporting local nonprofits:
In-kind contributions. Rather than providing actual cash, your organization can fulfill its philanthropic mission by donating physical goods or services to a local nonprofit. They include:
Products or services that are the basis of your business. For example, a restaurant may cater food at no charge for a nonprofit’s special event, a printing company may print the event program for free, and so on.
Building, construction and manufacturing industries can contribute labor or materials toward the expansion of nonprofit facilities or for specific construction projects.
Used office equipment. As businesses upgrade office equipment, items still in good working order are often welcome donations.
Bulk supplies. Become a partner with a local nonprofit organization and offer to add its need for bulk office supplies to your next order.
Many businesses make a difference by encouraging employees to volunteer for the organizations and causes that they care about.
Encourage employees to participate in volunteer work by offering paid time off.
Small nonprofits can be short on skilled staff that perform essential tasks such as legal, administration, bookkeeping and writing. Con-sider “loaning” your employees with particular abilities to an organization in need.
In association with employee volunteerism, you may want to consider a matching gift program that pledges a corporate donation that matches with hours volunteered or an employee’s financial donation to a specific cause.
Sponsorships can bring visibility and alignment with a good cause. Develop a plan that addresses how and when your organization will choose to be a sponsor, including what your obligations and benefits will be.
By taking a new approach to corporate giving, your organization can develop strong partnerships that can make a positive impact.
— Greg Chaillé
president, Oregon Community Foundation
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