People give to United Way for many reasons, but the number one reason people do not give is because they weren’t asked. Below you will find downloadable pledge cards, and some additional resources to help you “make the ask.”
Pledge Cards & Giving Guide
- Pledge card
- Pledge card (fillable PDF)
- Corporate pledge card (1 per page or 3 per page)
- de Tocqueville Society pledge card
- eBook: How to Incorporate Leadership Giving into your campaign
- Leadership Giving Society benefits brochures
Tips on “making the ask”
United Way’s research shows a peer-to-peer ask is the most effective way of asking for a pledge. Sincerely communicating your commitment to supporting the community through United Way really does make a difference. Leaving pledge cards in employees’ mailboxes and hoping they will be returned is not recommended.
- Be prepared. Make or increase your pledge before asking your coworkers. Be familiar with stories of those who have been helped through United Way agencies and facts about how United Way helps. Personalize your employees’ pledge cards with suggested amounts or last year’s gift amount.
- Ask for a specific increase or first-time gift.
- Handle concerns. See “Managing objections” below.
- Say thank you regardless of what the donor decides.
Asking in a Group Setting
Company rallies are a great way to introduce employees to United Way and ask for a donation.
- Determine who will make the ask. Many companies choose their CEO to make an ask during the rally. He or she can discuss why your company chooses to support United Way, your company goal, and the impact United Way has on our region.
- Invite a speaker from a local agency.
- Distribute pledge cards or inform employees how to pledge. Hand out personalized pledge cards at the rally and hold an incentive drawing for those who turn them in.
- Make the ask. Close the rally with one task: make a gift.
Answer questions honestly – never guess. If you don’t know the answer to a question, let the donor know you will find out and then follow up with your United Way representative. Recognize that some donors have real concerns; people have a right to feel good about their gift.
I already give directly to XYZ charity. Why should I give to United Way?
Giving is a personal decision, and it’s great that you’ve found a cause with which you identify. One thing to keep in mind is United Way works across dozens of causes, so when you make a gift to United Way, you are not only supporting one cause, but a variety of needs. I encourage you to take a look at United Way’s brochure to see the vast array of nonprofits United Way supports.
Nobody I know uses these services.
With one in three people in our region receiving help through United Way, we’re all bound to know someone who has been helped through United Way. United Way agencies work across a broad spectrum of services including services related to health (such as diabetes, heart health and Alzheimer’s), children (such as education, childcare, abuse prevention and adoption), and seniors (such as in-home care, transportation and recreation). When we give to United Way, we’re often helping people closer to home than we think. Take a look at United Way’s website, HelpingPeople.org, for a complete listing of United Way agencies and services.
I can’t give a lot so my donation won’t have an impact.
Every dollar really does make a difference. The great thing about United Way is with so many people choosing to help, when we each give a little, it has a huge impact. I hope you will consider supporting our region through United Way in a way that makes sense for you.
I’m concerned about scandals.
Every United Way is local and independent, including United Way of Greater St. Louis. Our United Way has a local board of directors that makes decisions that are right for our region, and United Way of Greater St. Louis has never experienced financial abuse. Another safeguard is the wide range of community volunteers who give their time to help keep United Way so efficient. These volunteers monitor the management and performance of United Way and the agencies United Way funds. You can learn more about how United Way allocates donations, our Board of Directors and our financial statements at HelpingPeople.org.
My spouse gives at his/her company. Why should I give to United Way?
Thank you for your spouse’s donation! Many couples choose to give at both workplaces because they want to participate with their coworkers. It’s also a great way to support your individual companies.
United Way supports an organization or a cause that I don’t like.
It’s important that you feel comfortable with your decision to donate. Although you may not care for one agency, United Way supports more than 170 other agencies that serve people in our region. These agencies help meet the needs of our community – from child abuse prevention to elderly care. Without the support of the community through United Way, many of these important agencies would not exist.