Year End Giving

By Christy Eckoff, director, gift planning Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

By Christy Eckoff, director, gift planning Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

By Christy Eckoff, director, gift planning Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

With the end of the year coming rapidly, making thoughtful decisions about year-end giving can feel overwhelming, especially this year. Tax changes are coming and how that will affect charitable giving, the availability of deductions and the ability to minimize taxes through gifts to charity are unknown. This is a year of certainty – with an uncertain future. To help you achieve your giving goals, here are five tips for last-minute charitable giving: Continue reading

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Last call: Deadline for Toys for Tots this Sunday!

The expression on a child’s face as they open a Christmas present is priceless. Is it the Hatchimal they’ve been dreaming about? A Star Wars Lego set? Or maybe a shiny new bike with training wheels? As they tear through the paper, the possibility of what has been wrapped seems endless…

And while we’d all like to believe that every child across Greater Atlanta’s 13-county region will open a present this Christmas, we know that doesn’t happen. Let me help you put this in perspective.

Each year, United Way of Greater Atlanta’s 2-1-1 – a contact center that provides resources for children and their families – receives monthly calls consistently asking for the same three basic needs requests: food, rent and utilities. That changes in December. During the holidays, one of the top three requests drops off the list and is replaced by requests for toys. That means families that may need assistance with food, rent and utilities are going without one of those basic needs in order to provide their kids with the joy of opening a Christmas present – a joy that many of us take for granted each year. That’s heartbreaking.

Now comes “the ask.” As you continue your holiday shopping this week, think about the children that may not get a gift this Christmas. They won’t have the excitement and anticipation that you remember as a child, unless you do something to help. If you’re grabbing a Hatchimal for your child, pick up an extra one. The same goes for that Lego set or bike. The children in our community need you, but you don’t have much time. The deadline to donate is this Sunday, December 18 at any local Publix as well as other participating Toys for Tots drop off locations – click here to find one near you.

ChadChad Parker is the Director of Multimedia Content at United Way of Greater Atlanta. He can be reached at


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What does excellence really mean in the nonprofit sector?

By Lauren Jeong, program associate, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

In a sector driven by social good and a focus on people and communities rather than profits, what does excellence really mean? Is excellence measured by number of people served? Overhead costs? Donations collected? Number of meals distributed, tickets sold or people educated? Is it measured by a community’s reduction in homeless or increase in literacy? Continue reading

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Forget Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It’s #GivingTuesday!

We’re fresh off the heels of Thanksgiving and Christmas is quickly approaching. During the holiday season, both stomachs and hearts are full. Friends and family gather to share stories, food and gifts of appreciation. And, yes, we’re presented with plenty of ways to give.

Black Friday. Cyber Monday. #GivingTuesday? I’ll get back with you on the last one in a second.

This year’s Black Friday broke records. Shoppers lined up – and shopped online – ready for doorbusters and dramatically discounted loot. According to National Retail Federation, Black Friday saw more than 154 million consumers scrambling for deals. Sales were up by 1.3 percent over last year. Cyber Monday broke records, too.

So what is #GivingTuesday, you ask? It’s a global day of giving powered by social media and the collaboration of nonprofits and caring communities. Always celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.), it follows Black Friday and Cyber Monday by kicking off the charitable season, when folks focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving. And it’s today.

Today, think about a charity or organization that you support. Dig in your pockets and make a donation. Spread the word about how others can help with #GivingTuesday. Sign up to volunteer on a chilly, but sunny Saturday. It doesn’t matter how or who you give to – just give.

Of course, I’m a bit partial to giving to United Way. Because of our giving, tireless supporters, just last year:

-100,000+ kids got better grades in school
-50,000+ people saw a doctor and received medicine when they were sick
-40,000+ people found a place to live
-46,000+ meals were delivered to hungry kids during the summer
-17,000+ moms and dads learned how to save for a rainy day

These are huge numbers that can’t happen without a supportive philanthropic community. Celebrate #GivingTuesday. And I’ll make it easy for you in case you’d like to give to United Way. Click here to give.

ChadChad Parker is the Director of Multimedia Content at United Way of Greater Atlanta. For more information, email

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Giving thanks for what philanthropy makes possible

Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 8.39.02 PMBy Alicia Philipp, president, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

As I pause to give thanks this week, I am in awe of some of the ways the philanthropists who engage with the Community Foundation, and the nonprofits we work closely with, are making progress toward making life better for our region’s residents. This year I am thankful for… Continue reading

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Over 3 million vote “Yes” on Amendment 2!

sh_fb_cover_thankyouOn Tuesday, November 8th, Georgia voters successfully passed Amendment 2, a ballot initiative creating the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund. On behalf of the hundreds of children who are trafficked and exploited in Georgia every year, I would like to thank the over 3 million voters across the state who overwhelmingly voted yes. Continue reading

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A day to celebrate philanthropy

By Mendal Bouknight, VP philanthropy, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

On November 1, the Community Foundation was proud to be the title sponsor for National Philanthropy Day. This annual event presented by the Association for Fundraising Professionals is a day to celebrate generosity, passion and impact. Continue reading

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Why does Amendment 2 need you?

On November 8, we have an important choice to make. Will we stand together as Georgians to help child victims of trafficking and exploitation? Or, will we turn our backs on those whose lives have been tragically changed by predators who have tricked and coerced them into being sold for sex? As members of the United Way Women’s Leadership Council and as mothers, we believe the choice is clear. Vote yes on Amendment 2 on the general election ballot. Continue reading

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The Ballad of the Four Ballot Measures

By Kathy Palumbo, director, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta

In 1954, Congress added language to Treasury regulations requiring 501(c)(3) nonprofits to be nonpartisan. This has been seen as restrictive and opportunistic.  We prefer to think of this as a way to offer an opinion about a variety of issues that impact the nonprofit sector and the communities we serve. Continue reading

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Sharing My “Why”

A look at why I choose to support the youth in my community

As the son of a high school English teacher and factory worker, my parents made clear to me as a child that education was my top priority and a stepping stone to a better life. Nonetheless, they realized that they could not sustain my focus alone. My parents depended heavily on local volunteers from the marching band, my church, oratorical contests and a variety of other outlets to ignite a hunger for success. Realizing that resources and opportunities are fewer now for teens than what I received in the 1990’s, I’m compelled to support the well-being of youth through my career, volunteerism and philanthropy. Continue reading

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