Challenge Grant FAQs

Eligible Gifts

Who is a private donor?
A private donor is an individual, family, corporation, foundation, or other charitable entity, but not a government source.
What types of gifts to our organization count toward meeting our Circle of Service Foundation challenge grant?

We generally match contributions solicited and collected after we notify an organization of the challenge grant award. We count only contributions from: (a) new private donors or (b) current private donors who increase their donations.

Who is a new donor?
A new donor is one who has not made a donation to your organization during the two years prior to the date we notify you of the challenge grant award. The entire amount of a gift from a new donor counts toward the challenge. Example: A donor contributed $100 three years ago and has given nothing since. The donor then receives your special appeal to help meet the challenge and gives $100. The donor’s gift is considered a new gift for this purpose, and the entire $100 gift counts towards the match.
You define a new donor as someone who has not made a donation to our organization during the prior two years. How do you define the prior two years?
We define the prior two years as the 24 months prior to the start date of the COSF grant terms.
Who is a current donor?
All donors who are not new donors are current donors. In other words, current donors are donors who have made a contribution to your organization in the two years prior to the date we notify you of the challenge grant award.
What counts as an increased donation from a current donor?

An increased donation refers to the additional amount that a current donor gives over and above the largest total annual amount the donor gave in the two years prior to the date we notify you of the challenge grant award. For current donors, only the increased amount counts toward the match.

Example 1: Donor A gave three donations to you totaling $100 in the year prior to the grant term, and then Donor A gives two donations to you totaling $150 during the grant term; the increased donation is $50.

Example 2: Donor B gave no donations in the one year prior to the grant term, but gave two donations to you totaling $200 in the year before that. Donor B then gives you one donation of $275 during the grant term. The increased donation is $75.

Do you match in-kind donations or fees for services?
No.
Can we solicit all the funds from one donor to satisfy the challenge grant?
No. An eligible donation is capped at 25% of the annual amount of our challenge grant. Example: We award an organization a challenge grant of $10,000. A new donor makes a $5,000 donation to the organization. We will match $2,500 of this donor’s gift.
We already have a challenge grant from another donor. Can we count future gifts towards both our existing challenge grant and the COSF challenge grant? Can the COSF challenge grant be applied to meet our other challenge grant?
If you have a challenge grant from another donor at the time you receive the COSF challenge grant, then the gifts that meet the other challenge grant may not also be used to meet the COSF challenge grant. Additionally, our challenge grant cannot be used to satisfy another challenge grant.

 

Timeframe

How long do we have to raise funds to fulfill the challenge grant, and when does the clock start?
To count towards the challenge, pledges and payments must occur within the term of the grant.  Payments received during the grant term in fulfillment of pledges made prior to the grant term do not count. Also, pledges received during the grant term do not count to the extent they are paid after the grant term.

 

Special Events

Can we count ticket prices or proceeds from raffle tickets, a silent auction or a live auction?
No.
Will you match proceeds from a “paddle raise” in which the donor receives no goods or services?
Yes.

 

Other Rules

Are there any other rules or restrictions?

The particular terms of your grant are set out in your grant terms letter.  If your grant letter says something different from what is described here, the letter governs.