How does VCF work?
VCF is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) charity. VCF is authorized by the Internal Revenue Service to pursue any activity qualifying as charitable in nature. VCF may undertake those activities with no further notice to the public. VCF is focused on investing in the community in many manners which improve the economic and social conditions of low, moderate income and under-served community members.
VCF plans to facilitate investment in our charities and service organizations by:
- Operating a community development loan fund similar to the New Hampshire Community Development Loan Fund. This activity will raise funds that VCF will directly invest in charitable organization facilities and loan funds to those organizations primarily for facilities. Fundraising will be conducted primarily via our website but also personal solicitations, direct mail and other methods.
- Operating an online fundraising website, which most of these FAQs relate to. Fundraising campaigns will be both for long-term capital projects and for smaller short-term operating campaigns. We currently anticipate that activities will commence focused on short term smaller campaigns and that larger-scale capital projects will follow in the future. Donations are made to VCF which then makes grants to charities and service organizations for specific approved and credentialized charitable projects.
VCF is dedicated to creating a community of donors and charities. VCF credentials charities and campaigns (See Donate To a Charity) and then makes them easy for potential donors to find and support in a tax deductible manner (See Submit a Campaign). There are no deadlines or limits. VCF, charities and individuals can propose a campaign.
VCF strives to be as efficient as possible. The current proposed support level for VCF is fifteen percent. This is most likely less than your income tax deduction going to your support of VCF. There is a risk that expenses will be greater than fifteen percent.
VCF also may issue notes to the public in order to fund long-term capital projects. At this point VCF has no notes outstanding and has not initiated any specific legal action to authorize such notes.
VCF values respect, empathy and fairness to all. We are committed to high standards of ethical conduct in all aspects of our work. VCF also generally believes that charities with seven or more independent directors are managed with integrity and IRS forms are reliable indicators of actual conduct of charities. We do the best work that we can and we assure you that we make our best efforts. Given the nature of both human nature and electronics systems, we cannot offer absolute assurance of perfection in our work and hope you accept that.
VCF maintains conflict of interest policies which are common to other nonprofits.
How is VCF alike or different from United Ways?
VCF is like United Ways’ in several respects:
- VCF is a designated public charity (See Our Designation Letter
- VCF accepts requests for charitable projects
- VCF credentializes certain matters concerning the charity and the charitable purposes
- VCF accepts donations in its own name and issues income tax acknowledgement letters
- VCF deducts operating expenses from donations to fund its expenses.
- VCF intends to honor charity campaign donation designations
We expect that a very high percentage of donations will designated to specific campaigns because most campaigns revolve around specific charities and specific purposes
VCF’s Board of Directors makes final allocations and gifts funds to charities and service organizations
How is VCF different from United Ways?
- Any charity, service organization or individual can initiate a campaign for a charitable or service cause.
- As opposed to United Ways’, VCF may use multiple ways to assist charities, including issuing notes in its own name to fund long-term capital projects.
- VCF intends to run campaigns continuously all year round for funds to gift to charities as contrasted with United Ways’, which run public campaigns for a portion of the year.
- VCF tends to support targeted projects or activities of charities and service organizations. We believe this helps donors target their donations. We encourage charities to specifically describe the project or activity and require them to assure us that the funds will be used for the specific purpose. A charity may request contributions to its general fund and we will honor that and give donors that option. Each campaign we run for support tries to specifically describe the project we may support.
- VCF uses more contemporary electronic communications, due diligence, accounting, gifting and other procedures to increase dramatically the percentage of donor contributions gifted to charities. Review of various United Way IRS Forms 990 reveal that United Ways’ may absorb over sixty percent of donor contributions for overhead-actually gifting less than forty percent to charities. While VCF at this point is a startup we anticipate fifteen percent of contributions received, net of bank transaction fees, will be absorbed by overhead.