The secret to boosting revenue

For nonprofit organizations, every dollar counts. Corporate employee matching gifts offer the opportunity to turn one dollar donated to Play Like a Girl by a match-eligible employee into two, three, four—or even five dollars!

In this article, we’re going to explore exactly what to expect when working with matching gifts and how to make the most of this incredible fundraising opportunity for the benefit of the girls we serve.

What are corporate matching gift programs?

Employee matching gift programs are a type of corporate philanthropy set up to encourage employees to give back to their communities. These companies encourage community outreach by making donations to the same nonprofits that their employees have donated to. And, yes, that includes Play Like a Girl!

These programs have become quite widespread, but many donors have not heard of them or aren’t aware of their own match-eligibility. $4 to 7 billion in matching gift revenue is left on the table each year, and we want to work with our donors to claim some of it to help advance our mission to level the playing field for girls and women.

The specifics of these programs vary from company to company, but the elements that shape these guidelines are always the same:

  • Match ratio: This defines what kind of donation the company will make in relation to the employee’s initial contribution. A 1:1 ratio indicates that the company will donate the exact same amount, doubling the contribution to Play Like a Girl.
  • Minimum and maximum: The minimum refers to the amount an employee must donate to qualify for a matching gift. The maximum is the total amount that a company will donate in matching contributions per employee annually.
  • Employee status: Sometimes, the employee’s role at the company can affect the match for which they qualify. For example, Gap Inc. offers a $1,000 maximum match to part-time employees and a $10,000 maximum to Senior VPs.
  • Nonprofit eligibility: Some programs offer different matches based on the nonprofit to which funds are being donated. ExxonMobil offers a higher match for donations made to educational institutions than for donations made to cultural organizations.
  • Deadline: Every program identifies a deadline when the matching gift request must be submitted by the employee. This deadline can be either a firm date (December 31st is common) or a threshold based on the date of the initial donation (90 days after donation is made). We encourage you to search your inbox for all Play Like a Girl donation receipts, total your gifts, and submit your matching gift request as soon as possible.

Thousands of companies offer matching gift programs. A few examples include:

  • Johnson & Johnson triples donations with a 2:1 match for current employees while also doubling donations (a 1:1 match) for retirees.
  • Bank of America matches donations 1:1 up to $5,000 annually per employee.
  • Home Depot matches donations 1:1 up to $3,000 annually per employee.

The impact of these programs on grassroots organizations like Play Like a Girl can be substantial! Microsoft has been known to match over $48 million worth of employee donations to schools and 501(c)(3) nonprofits in a single year. Did you know that more than 18 million employees work for companies with matching gift programs? You might be one of them.

Want to help Play Like a Girl?

Last year we received over 100 matching gifts, which helped us raise nearly $20,000. We’ve set a goal of raising $25,000 from these programs this year. If we meet our goal, we’ll be able to better make good on our mission to level the playing field for girls and women everywhere.

You can help us reach these goals by searching for your own match-eligibility. Immediately assess your eligibility and gain access to detailed information about your employer’s corporate giving program by clicking here to search our database of companies with matching gift programs.

We’ll provide you with as much of the following as possible:

  • Up-to-date, company-specific program guidelines 
  • Links to the online matching gift request forms or downloadable PDFs offered by your employer
  • Our contact information (Tax ID: 33-1149207, address, fundraising contact), which you may need for your matching gift request

If your company isn’t listed, make sure to check with the HR department. It’s still possible that your employer offers matching gifts.

We wish we could submit the required form for you, but unfortunately the employee must submit the matching gift request to their employer directly. 

We appreciate you taking a few minutes to double your donation!