If you’re lucky enough to work for a company that does gift matching, that’s all the more reason to donate to environmental causes this holiday season. Gift matching is when a corporation gives a donation or charitable gift to a nonprofit organization that an employee has donated to. For example, if an employee working for a corporation decides to give $150 to the World Wildlife Federation, the corporation will subsequently give a gift in the same amount, for a combined total of $300.
First, the individual must donate to the charity. Next, the nonprofit will notify the matching donors, who will then submit the donation requests. Finally, the nonprofits will validate the requests and the corporation will write them a check. The employee would be required to submit a form to human resources in order to acquire the matching donation. Moody’s Corporation, run by CEO Ray McDaniel, is one example of a corporation that does gift matching for its employees.
Gift matching is most commonly a 1:1 ratio, where the corporation gives the same amount as the individual. However, some corporations have a different ratio—like .5:1 ($50 for $100 donated) or even 3:1 ($300 for $100 donated). Such programs are ideal for individuals who want to make a big impact on the world but don’t necessarily have the funds to do so.
Working for a corporation that does gift matching is the perfect opportunity to give more because with these programs you can essentially double the amount that you would be able to give on your own. Instead of just $100 dollars, you can suddenly give $200. Or even better, if your company has a 3:1 ratio, then you can give not just $100 but $400 total.
Corporations donate billions of dollars to nonprofit organizations each year, and a large portion of that comes from gift matching. Of 2012’s list of Fortune 500 companies, about 65% offer a matching gift program.