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Double Your Donation for Free: The Magic of Matching Gifts

August 21, 2013 | Hannah Appelbaum

At the Cancer Research Institute, we are always looking for ways to maximize our donations and extend their reach. Taking advantage of matching gift programs is one of the easiest ways to magnify our impact—for free! Matching gift programs are charitable giving programs through which employers (corporations) match donations made by their employees to eligible nonprofit organizations. For example, if a donor works for Company X and donates $250 to CRI or a different 501(c)(3) organization, Company X will "double the donation" by writing a check for $250 to the same organization. It’s as simple as that.

The first corporate gift-matching program was created in 1954 by the GE Foundation. Today, matching gift programs are offered by a number of companies worldwide, including around 65% of Fortune 500 companies and many other kinds of organizations. In 2012, the top matched gift contributor (Microsoft) donated $48 million in matched dollars across nearly 19,000 different nonprofit organizations

Last year, CRI received just under $30,000 in matched donations from 46 different corporations. Given the ubiquity of corporate matching gifts today, we feel that these programs represent an untapped resource—one that could help us invest in even more promising research that is already changing the course of the fight against cancer. Often, our donors are either unaware that their employer offers a matching gift program or uncertain about the process.

Follow the steps below to learn how to double your donation, or call our Development Team at (212) 688-7515 to learn more about the magic of matching gifts.

Maximize your support by following these easy steps:

  1. Determine if your employer matches charitable contributions. Search for your employer in a matter of seconds here.
  2. Understand what kinds of contributions your employer matches. Some companies may only match donations to certain types of charities (for example, educational institutions). Search for your employer here and read about their gift matching requirements.
  3. Submit a matched gift request. Everyone’s process for matching gifts is a little different, but usually, requesting a matched gift is as simple as submitting a form (often online) to your company. Search for your employer here and follow the links provided to request your matched gift today.

If you have questions or concerns about your company’s matching gift program, please contact your employer directly.

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