Campaign FAQs


Valley Of The Sun United Way | FAQs

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Q. What is Valley of the Sun United Way’s overhead costs?

A. Valley of the Sun United Way incurs costs for fundraising, marketing and common business operations such as accounting, human resources and overall organizational management. As careful stewards of our donors’ contributions, Valley of the Sun United Way operates with the utmost efficiency and effectiveness. Less than 10 percent is spent on administrative cost and approximately 90 percent is invested in community initiatives which transform individual lives and impact entire communities.

Compared to the average of 15 percent* administrative costs reported by large non-profits, Valley of the Sun United Way is one of the most efficient non-profits in the country.

*According to Charity Navigator, a trusted authority on non-profits ratings, reports the benchmark “maximum” overhead is 35%, with the average overhead rate for the top large nonprofits at more than 15%. (2013)2003 McKinsey & Company Study as reported by the Association of Fundraising Professionals.


Q. Last year, I contributed directly to the Helping the Working Poor Fund and qualified for a tax credit. Is that option still available? What are the benefits of choosing this option?

A. Valley of the Sun United Way’s Helping the Working Poor fund helps provide job-skill training, affordable childcare, educational opportunities and more to the working poor in our community. The Helping the Working Poor fund qualifies as an “Arizona tax Credit for Donations Made to Qualifying Charitable Organizations”.

The working poor include individuals and families with low wage jobs who struggle to make ends meet. By investing a portion of your United Way contribution in Helping the Working Poor, you provide the means to increase self-sufficiency, and you could receive an Arizona State tax credit of up to $400.*

To take advantage of the Arizona Credit for Donations Made to Qualifying Charitable Organizations, you simply need to

  • Direct up to $400* to United Way’s Helping the Working Poor fund
  • Provide your name, home address and phone number on your pledge card in order to receive an acknowledgement for your tax records

For more information about United Way’s Financial Stability/Helping the Working Poor and the State of Arizona tax credit, call 602.631.4800.

*Arizona State Income Tax credits of between $200 and $400 are available based on your income tax filing status. Valley of the Sun United Way is not a tax advisor. As with any financial recommendation, contact a qualified tax professional for expert advice on your specific tax situation.

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Q. Why should I give directly to Valley of the Sun United Way instead of designating my donation directly to a United Way partner agency or other organization?

A. To encourage collective impact, Valley of the Sun United Way brings together partners from every sector – public, business, non-profit and faith-based organizations – to get things done. Together, with your support, we will achieve three vital Community Objectives that no one organization can do alone:

  1. Ensure Children and Youth Succeed
  2. End Hunger and Homelessness
  3. Increase the Financial Stability of Families and Individuals

We will drive systemic change that impacts entire communities, and transform individual lives across Maricopa County.

An undesignated donation directly to Valley of the Sun United Way builds caring communities where each person has the opportunity to achieve the aspirations we all share: a good education for our kids, a roof over our heads, food on the table and the security that comes with financial independence.


Q. Who or what organizations does Valley of the Sun United Way partner with? What criteria must Valley of the Sun United Way Partners meet to be eligible for funding?

A. View our community partner lists below:

Valley of the Sun United Way and our community partners (historically referred to as “Partner Agencies”) collaborate to create solutions to address our community’s most pressing social issues. The relationship with our traditional partners is unique. It is characterized by cooperative efforts in community problem solving, measurements of progress toward community problem solving, communication, and more. These partners are responsible for adhering to a number of compliance criteria in order to receive United Way program funding, including:

  • Be a tax-exempt, nonprofit corporation
  • Provide health and human service programs
  • Have active, rotating volunteer leadership that represents diverse elements of the community
  • Demonstrate sound financial and program management and be willing to make full disclosure
  • Provide timely financial and program outcome measurement
  • Annual compliance documentation required to be on file with Valley of the Sun United Way, including current USA Patriot Act certification form

The ongoing Resource Management Committee review process of program performance is a primary consideration in making funding decisions. In addition, United Way continues to work toward strong alignment between programmatic outcomes and our three Community Objectives: Ensure Children and Youth Succeed, End Hunger and Homelessness, and Increase the Financial Stability of Families and Individuals. By aligning our investments in these critical areas we believe we can drive systemic change that impacts entire communities while transforming individual lives every day.