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2011 Combined Federal Campaign

Wednesday, August 31, 2011
MEMORANDUM FOR: 
Heads Of Executive Departments And Agencies
From: 
John Berry, Director
Subject: 
2011 Combined Federal Campaign

The 50th Anniversary season of the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) starts September 1! We’re gearing up for a big Golden Anniversary, so please encourage support for the CFC at your agency.  I don’t have to tell you that the need is deep this year—the news reflects it every day.

President John F. Kennedy created the CFC in 1961.  It has been 50 years since he asked us to consider not what our country can do for us, but what we can do for our country.  This year, I ask you, and every Federal worker, to consider why we give.

We give because it feels right.  Because we speak of high ideals, and we are as good as our word.   Because we are moved by an event, an image, a catastrophe.  Because we, too, have known hardship. We give in memory of those lost, and in hopes that others will be saved. We give because we can.

We give because we go beyond the call of duty to serve and protect the American people—Federal workers, postal employees and military personnel pledged over $280 million dollars in each of the last two years. 

We often focus on the dollar amount raised, because it marks our combined impact on the charities we support.  But this year I’m asking each local CFC to also inspire new and greater numbers of donors, with a new award for the campaigns that show the greatest increase in participation. Let’s make this 50th year an outstanding year—one that marks a new era that will endure for the next fifty years.

I’ve enclosed materials to help you encourage potential donors and promote on-line giving in your campaign area.  If you or your staff have any questions or need assistance, please don’t hesitate to call or e-mail Keith Willingham, Director, Combined Federal Campaign, at (202) 606-2564 or at cfc@opm.gov.

cc: Chief Human Capital Officers

  


 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

Encourage Participation among Newly Hired Employees

Throughout its history, the CFC has received contributions from an average 57 percent of the Federal workforce.  In order to counter anticipated trends in donor loss through retirements, I am requesting your assistance in educating employees, and particularly newly hired Federal employees, postal employees and military personnel, about this important program. 

I encourage Department and Agency Heads to send the following message in an employee email to help educate Federal contributors about the CFC:

Suggested Email to Employees

50 years ago, President Kennedy established the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC).  The CFC enables you, as a Federal employee, to donate to the charity of your choice through your payroll system.

Donating through CFC is one of the best ways you can give to charity because:

    • it gives your charity steady  revenue throughout the next year
    • it has low overhead costs, so more money goes to your charity
    • it’s convenient for you (in most cases, you can donate online) and your tax records
    • it shows all Americans that Federal employees care about our communities

As Federal employees, we serve America every day, at all levels of government.  The CFC offers an opportunity to also serve privately, by supporting charitable organizations.

This year marks the 50th year since President John F. Kennedy created the CFC.  50 years since he asked us to consider not what our country can do for us, but what we can do for our country.  This year, I ask you to consider why we give.

We give because it feels right.  Because we speak of high ideals, and we are as good as our word.   Because we are moved by a word, an image, a catastrophe.  Because we, too, have known hardship. We give in memory of those lost, and in hopes that others will be saved. We give because we can.

We give because we go beyond the call of duty to serve and protect the American people. 

You will have an opportunity to make a pledge this fall.  You determine how much you can contribute and which participating organization(s) receives your contribution.  Even the smallest of donations can go a long way.

Payroll deduction lets you spread your contribution across the entire year.  For example, if you contribute the minimum payroll deduction of $26 and are paid twice a month for 26 pay periods during the year, $1 will be deducted from your pay check each pay period.  Spreading your contribution out over the year may allow you to contribute a larger amount and increase the benefits you can provide.

 To learn more about the CFC, you can talk to the CFC keyworkers who will be distributing the Charity List and pledge forms. 

Encourage Volunteer Support to Administer the CFC

The CFC would not occur at all without the support of each Department and Agency and its employees.  Further, the involvement of Federal employees as CFC representatives is a key reason that the CFC has historically been one of the most cost-effective fundraising mechanisms for nonprofit organizations.

I certainly understand that all of us are stretched for resources—so are many of the charities and families supported by CFC.  For this and other reasons, I recommend allowing your employees to serve as CFC Loaned Executives, Coordinators, and Keyworkers to the extent possible during the campaign period as well as encouraging employees to serve on their Local Federal Coordinating Committee.  These positions are often a great way to develop professional skills such as public speaking, financial accountability, and building public-private sector partnerships, among others. Since the CFC is a recognized Federal program, it is not appropriate to place these employees on leave or make employees take leave to administer the CFC within your agency.

I encourage Department and Agency Heads to send the following message to your senior executives, supervisors and managers located at your headquarters and at regional/field offices in an email to encourage support for the CFC:

Suggested Email to Senior Executives, Supervisors and Managers

The Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) is the world’s largest workplace giving campaign.  Last year, Federal employees raised over $280 million on behalf of charitable organizations across the country and overseas.  This year, the CFC marks its 50th anniversary at a time of greater than usual need.

The CFC would not be successful without the administrative support of Federal employees at each Department/Agency.  Federal employees may serve as CFC Loaned Executives, Coordinators, and Keyworkers to the extent possible during the campaign period to ensure a smooth campaign is administered with little or no disruption to the business of the Department/Agency.  I encourage you to provide the local non-profit CFC administrator with resources, as available, to assist in a successful CFC at your location.  Please contact [insert contact name and phone number/email] if you can provide staff to help administer the CFC at your location. 

In addition, I encourage you to consider volunteering to serve on the Local Federal Coordinating Committee in your location.  To do so, please go to OPM’s website at http://www.opm.gov/cfc/Search/Locator.asp, click on the drop down State menu and click on your state to find the LFCC contact in your location.  The LFCC contact can provide you with more information on how to volunteer in this role.  These positions are often a great way for employees to develop professional skills such as public speaking, financial accountability, and building public-private sector partnerships, among others.  Since the CFC is a recognized Federal program, it is not appropriate to place these employees on leave or make employees take leave to administer the CFC within your agency.  Thank you for your cooperation and support of the CFC.

Lower Administrative Expense with Online Giving

Finally, I bring to your attention the CFC module available through Employee Express, a convenient, user-friendly Federal human resource automated system that gives many employees direct control over key payroll and personnel information without having to use forms or visit a personnel or payroll office.  If your Department/Agency uses Employee Express, I encourage you to look into obtaining the CFC module available through Employee Express.  The CFC option allows your employees to make contributions through the CFC in an automated, secure and convenient fashion.  This option also will help reduce the cost to administer the CFC and to your payroll offices in that CFC data submitted through Employee Express is automatically uploaded into payroll office systems and transmitted to the local CFC administrator, thus eliminating the need for manual entry by the payroll offices and local CFC administrator as well as the manual collection of pledges from employees by Keyworkers and Coordinators.  If your Department/Agency does not already use Employee Express, but might be interested in it, please visit the Employee Express website at www.employeeexpress.gov for information and contacts.

It has been proven your leadership and endorsement of the CFC goes a long way towards ensuring its success within your Departments and Agencies.  Please take the time this year to encourage your employees’ participation in the CFC via monetary contributions and assistance by volunteering to help administer the CFC.  You may also consider periodic reminders to employees throughout the CFC solicitation period and personal participation in special fundraising events, which are designed to draw attention to the CFC within your Departments and Agencies.

CFC Geographic Boundaries

It has come to our attention that some Federal Departments and Agencies are attempting to conduct national campaigns for their employees by having all employees participate in the CFC of the National Capital Area located in Washington, DC, or to conduct regional campaigns by having all employees participate in one designated campaign located within a certain region. 

Requiring employees to participate in campaigns outside the geographic area of their official duty station is contrary to CFC regulations at 5 CFR § 950.103(h).  This regulation specifically provides that, “A Federal employee may participate in a particular CFC only if that employee's official duty station is located within the geographic boundaries of that CFC.”  Please ensure your campaigns are conducted accordingly.  Federal employees can determine their appropriate campaign by visiting OPM’s CFC website at www.opm.gov/cfc/Search/Locator.asp and selecting the State where their official duty station is located.

Thank you for your support of the CFC.  If you have any questions or need assistance, please contact OPM’s CFC at (202) 606-2564 or at cfc@opm.gov.