Growfund for Giving Circles is an innovative technology platform specifically designed to support giving circles such as ours. It’s built so that you can continue to do amazing work without cost barriers, administrative hassles, or communication troubles that giving circle administrators often face.
Growfund is a no-minimum donor advised fund (DAF) that allows giving circles to easily collect funds from members and grant those funds to more than 1.8 million charities. The simple and streamlined solution includes easy setup and hosting, full reporting of gifts and associated donor information, and grant distribution tools.
In May 2018, Growfund hosted four demo calls with Alliance chapter leaders. To watch one of the video demos, click here.
How Do I Set Up My Growfund Account?
To get your chapter up and running on the Growfund for Giving Circle platform, follow these easy steps!
- Go here: https://mygrowfund.org/giving-circles/
- Click the “Start a Fund” in the upper right hand corner.
- You first will need to create your personal account. You can do this by setting up your payment now, or do that later. Doing this sets you up as the administrator of the fund. If you want other steering team members to be an administrator, you can ask them to do this step individually OR you can add them when you create the Giving Circle (Step 4 below).
- From there you will be directed to create your Giving Circle (call it your 100 name (e.g. 100 XYZ Who Care Location)).
- The set up team at Growfund for Giving Circles will then be in touch with you to obtain the copy and logo you want on your page.
- Once completed, you can share the link in emails, your social media channels, and even link it on your website!
What are the fees for administering the fund? How are they assessed?
Aside from the normal credit card transaction fees, Growfund also assesses a fee of one percent (1%) of the total recommended grant amount. The 1% fee on the grant amount is deducted directly from your giving circle account after you make a grant. As chapter leaders, we are responsible for making sure the account has enough funds to cover both the grant amount and 1% distribution fee. If you do not have enough funds in your account to cover the fee, Global Impact will be unable to distribute your funds to your selected grantee until they become available. For example, if you suggest a grant for $100, please ensure $101 is in your account. A $10,000 grant requires $10,100 in the account. By asking members to pay the added $4 or $5, you will be sure to have enough to cover the fees. Learn more.
Can my members make quarterly payments?
Yes! There is what you would consider a “subscription” feature, known as a “recurring payment” where members can make their donations routinely (annually, quarterly, bi-monthly, monthly, one-time, etc.) They even get to choose the exact date when their credit card should first be charged. So, if your meeting is on the first of the month, members can choose to have their cards charged on the 15th so you can distribute funds prior to the end of the month.
Will subscriptions be indefinite?
No. Members will need to determine how many recurring payments they wish to make at the time they set this feature up. You will be able to see/track/monitor who has paid and for how long on your back end dashboard.
Will Growfund collect the tax receipt from the nonprofit and distribute to my members?
No, and yes. When members make a donation to your Donor Advised Fund (DAF) on Growfund for Giving Circles, they are giving to a nonprofit called Global Impact (a 501(c)(3) that has existed since 1956 and the parent organization over Growfund). Global Impact is the organization that your members will have a tax receipt from for their annual donations. Your group’s donation will be mailed from Growfund to the nonprofit along with a letter stating that 100 X Who Care YZ made the enclosed donation and the letter will include the chapter’s name and contact information for a group acknowledgement.
How Do I Distribute Funds?
As a DAF and similar to a community foundation fund, you tell Growfund for Giving Circles where to direct your donation and they will. Every single nonprofit listed in the GuideStar directory is already preloaded into their system, and if a nonprofit is not on the list (think local scout troop possibly), then you can request they be added to the list. Growfund will vet the nonprofit and make it available for you to make your donation.
The key thing is, you direct the funds and it’s easy to do. Just follow these steps:
- Go to https://mygrowfund.org/giving-circles/ and login
- Navigate to the Make A Grant page
- Use the GuideStar powered search module to find your grant recipient (Searching by the EIN is an efficient way to find charity)
- Review the EIN and website to ensure it is the correct charity
- Recommend the grant after selecting the grantee(s) and the donation amount(s)
- After you recommend a grant, the Global Impact team will confirm the charity’s validity and distribute the check. The grantee will receive a letter indicating the name of the giving circle who selected them as a recipient in 7-12 business days.
- Many giving circles also choose to alert the grantee that the check is on its way.
My account earned interest…why?
To see FAQ’s on the Growfund page, please click here: https://mygrowfund.org/giving-circles-faq/