Frequently Asked Questions

What is United Way of Northeastern South Dakota?

The purpose of United Way of Northeastern South Dakota is to exist as a voluntary, not-for-profit organization that unites community volunteers and agencies to provide health and human care to people who live and work in Brown, Day, Edmunds, Marshall, McPherson and Spink counties and to partnership with other organizations to make these communities a better place.

Funds contributed through the annual campaign provide financial support for a broad range of programs and services in northeastern South Dakota. This balancing of community resources and local needs is performed by a cross section of volunteers.

How are funds distributed?

United Way of Northeastern South Dakota volunteers recommend the amount of money to be allocated for specific agencies. Community volunteers serving as members of the Budget/Evaluation Committee, review community needs and priorities, agency program’s effectiveness and efficiency, agency accountability and fiscal management. The citizen review process involves approximately 30 volunteers contributing their time on the Budget/Evaluation Committee. The volunteer Board of Directors has the final approval of the budget recommendation for funding of agency programs.

What percent of their budgets do United Way agencies receive from United Way?

On the average, funded agencies receive 22% of their budgets from United Way. These amounts vary from agency to agency with some receiving as much as 76% of their budget and others only 3%.

Who is ultimately responsible for the activities of United Way and for the funds it raises and distributes?

The 24 volunteer members that comprise the Board of Directors, in addition to being accountable to the community, are personally liable and legally responsible to see that United Way of Northeastern South Dakota is properly managed.

What is the process of admitting agencies to United Way of Northeastern South Dakota?

United Way of Northeastern South Dakota has an open application process one time each year to consider admission of new agencies. The Budget/Evaluation Committee reviews each application and offers the recommendation to the Board of Directors. Admittance is based upon the following criteria: the agency's organizational structure, their programs and the availability of United Way funds. The Budget/Evaluation Committee is also responsible for ensuring the continued effectiveness of the current United Way agencies. Each agency is reviewed every year using the same criteria as new applicants.

How adequate has United Way funding been for member agencies?

Last year, requests for United Way funding for health and human services exceeded the dollars available by approximately 19%. Beneath this figure is a hard reality. Serious human needs have always existed in counties served by United Way of Northeastern South Dakota. While many have been addressed by United Way agencies, others have not and still more emerge every year.

During the annual campaign many companies provide payroll deduction for their employees, what are the advantages of giving through payroll deduction?

It is easier for individuals to contribute a small amount each pay period than to contribute the same sum all at once. In addition, donors tend to contribute more if they can extend the payments over a longer period of time. Also, United Way of Northeastern South Dakota is now providing donors the ability to give through ACH. For more on ACH giving, contact the United Way office.

Can an employee designate his/her contribution?

Yes, a contributor has three options when contributing to United Way: 1) do not designate and the gift will be distributed based on the recommendations of the Budget/Evaluation Committee; 2) exclude any United Way agency from any part of their gift; 3) designate all or a portion of their gift of $50 or more to one or more of the United Way funded agencies. Any of these options can be done when completing the pledge card or giving on-line.