Invest in Your Community, Give to the United Way 

Creating Opportunities for a Better Life for All

Berwick Area United Way works hard to identify the unmet needs of our community and to develop ways to address those needs.  We support groups that need our network, expertise and resources to make a difference in our community. We advocate for policy changes and financial support from our state representatives.  We listen to our communities to better understand their needs and connect them with resources.  We supply basic needs to so many people.  We grant out a majority of our income to  non-profits in the area that can prove measurable outcomes.   We create and operate programs that fill the gap and service folks who may otherwise not qualify. 

A How-To Guide for Charitable Giving

As the nation’s largest charity, United Way Worldwide understands the impact that charitable giving has on improving communities and helping individuals. United Way also understands how important it is to choose the right organization to donate your hard-earned dollars. As you prepare to make any type of charitable gift, we urge you to follow the simple guidelines below.

1. View Your Donation as an Investment.

Any gift to a charity should be seen as an investment, and you want to invest in a charity that will make a major impact on its recipients while also giving you personal satisfaction. An investment approach to a particular group or cause will ensure a more meaningful experience for you.

2. Do Your Homework.

When selecting where to give, it is important to gather all the facts. Conducting thorough research prior to giving will help you separate legitimate charities from frauds, as well as reassure you that your donation is truly helping those who need it most. To avoid fraudulent charities, make sure your chosen charity has met the following criteria: registered as a charitable organization in the State of Pennsylvania, maintains 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, files annual state and federal reports including the IRS Form 990, has an annual audit prepared and prepares an annual report. All of these documents should be readily available at your request.

3. Track the Charity's Activities.

Check what percentage of the organization's funds go to administrative costs. Guidestar recommends no more than 25% of the gross income of an organization go to administration. Anything more may be a tipoff to excessive salaries, poor management or poor financial administration. Read the organization's annual report to see what activities and services the organization provided and how many people were served. Did the activities and services match the stated mission and objectives of the organization?

4. Local Activities.

Think about keeping your gifts local. While every community in our country has similar problems, the issues are not always the same. Gifts to local organizations help local residents and deal with local problems.