Have you heard about the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Special Solicitation?

In response to questions about how the federal community can help charities during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) authorized a CFC Special Solicitation to run from April 20 – June 30. During this time, federal employees and retirees have the opportunity to make supplemental one-time or recurring donations via credit, debit or bank draft to one or more of the more than 6,000 approved 501(c)(3) organizations in the 2019 CFC Charity List. Members of the federal community who did not pledge during the 2019 campaign will also be able to start a payroll allotment pledge. Donations can be made on the CFC online giving portal and OPM’s new mobile giving app, which can be downloaded by searching “CFC Giving” on either Apple or Android devices.

This is great news for 2019 CFC charities! Here are a few important things you need to know:

  1. The CFC Special Solicitation is only for charities that applied, were approved, and participated in the 2019 CFC.
    We all hope that disaster and emergency situations rarely occur; however, when the government authorizes a response, only approved and participating organizations are eligible to receive additional donations from these special fundraising opportunities. This is one advantage of participating in the CFC each year. Another piece of good news is ALL CFC-approved and participating organizations are eligible. The special solicitation is not limited to only those organizations directly participating in disaster relief or emergency response efforts.
  2. OPM will not assess a distribution fee against donations made during the CFC Special Solicitation.  
    Because CFC charities have already paid the fees associated with the campaign, no additional administrative fees will be withheld from the donations pledged during this CFC Special Solicitation.
  3. Like all CFC pledges, the donations made and distributed during the CFC Special Solicitation are unrestricted funds. 
    This means that funds you receive can be put to work wherever they are needed most: A welcome gift during these tough times when you might have had to cancel spring fundraising events and other sources of fundraising may have declined.
  4. CFC charities will start receiving funds pledged to them during the CFC Special Solicitation quickly. 
    The CFC Central Campaign Administrator (CCA) began making monthly distributions from the 2019 CFC to participating charities on April 15. Funds pledged during this CFC Special Solicitation will be included in regularly monthly distributions as early as May 15 and will continue through the Jan. 15, 2021, distribution for recurring donations.
  5. Federal employees and retirees will receive information about the CFC Special Solicitation through federal department/agency communications and social media. 
    Since the CFC Special Solicitation is falling outside of the typical campaign season, the traditional network of campaign workers will not be available for campaign promotion. Internal communications within each agency and social media will be one of the only ways the government is spreading the word about this special giving occasion to the federal community.
  6. CFC charities have a huge opportunity to market themselves and the CFC Special Solicitation.  
  • Promote the CFC Special Solicitation in your charity’s letters, emails, newsletters, webinars, social media and more.
  • Follow the Combined Federal Campaign on Facebook and Twitter to like, share and comment on the posts.
  • Use the information provided, including a downloadable flyer and FAQ document, on some CFC local zone websites, like the Combined Federal Campaign of the National Capital Area, to help you craft your messages.
  • #GivingTuesdayNow falls during the CFC special solicitation. Consider adding a call out to federal employees on your donation page or in #GivingTuesdayNow promotions. For Global Impact’s Charity Alliance, refer to the #GivingTuesdayNow toolkit to enhance you outreach.

The federal community is comprised of hard-working, dedicated and generous individuals looking for ways to give back and make the world a better place. They accomplish this in their daily work, and they tangibly demonstrated this sentiment through the $83.8 million pledged during the 2019 CFC. This CFC Special Solicitation is an opportunity for them to do even more, if they are able. I, for one, will be eagerly watching to see what this inspiring group will accomplish between now and June 30.