General FAQ

Q. What is a Community Foundation?

The Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes inspires philanthropy to make lives better. Our grants and scholarships support the people of Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben, and Yates counties in the Southern Tier of New York State. Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes, Inc. helps individuals, families, companies and organizations to invest in the future of the Southern Tier community and its people. Formed as a public charity, we award grants to non-profit organizations whose programs make a positive impact on the needs and issues that face our community.

We address the current needs of the community through a multiple avenue approach to correct the problems that exist and find creative solutions to avoid the problems in the future. The Community Foundation also prides itself on being the only foundation in the area that looks at the holistic needs in the community, including education, arts, infrastructure, animals, the environment, and wellness.

Q. What is FLXGives?

FLXGives is a day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. FLXGives is an initiative of Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes, Inc.. FLXGives is our community's biggest day of local giving! For 24-hours, our community comes together with gifts big and small to give back to the nonprofits which are helping to better our local community.

Q. When is FLXGives?

FLXGives is on November 16, 2023 from 6:00 p.m. to November 17, 2023 at 6:00 p.m.

Q. What is GiveGab?

GiveGab is a nonprofit giving platform that helps nonprofits to raise money, engage donors and manage volunteers quickly and efficiently. GiveGab offers a full portfolio of simple and easy to use products that allows organizations to function in a more streamlined manner.

Nonprofit FAQ

Q. Which organizations can participate?

Organizations that are verified 501( c )(3) charitable nonprofits that are headquartered or provide services in or provide services in Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben and/or Yates Counties of Upstate New York.

Q. Who can donate?

Anyone may donate. Donations through the FLXGives online portal to charitable nonprofit organizations are tax-deductible and cannot be refunded. Contributions may be made via credit and debit card only. Donations will be received and receipted by GiveGab. Cash and checks will be accepted at any of the in-person events during FLXGives or at the nonprofit of your choice. Donations will be received and receipted by GiveGab.

Q. How will donations be distributed?

Each donation made to a participating nonprofit will be disbursed directly from GiveGab via direct deposit within 5-7 business days.

Q. How much of my donation goes to the nonprofit?

Of each donation, only 5.5% + $0.30 will be retained by the credit card companies and GiveGab. The complete breakdown is as follows:

  • 3% service charge from GiveGab for building and maintaining the hosting site, as well as live event customer service and donation processing.
  • 2.5% is charged on all credit card, Apple/Google/Microsoft pay transactions + $0.30 per transaction.
  • ACH bank payment method is available to donors who wish to give $100 or more per nonprofit. There is a $3 per transaction/nonprofit fee will apply (and replace the typical credit card fee). Total fees per nonprofit in this instance would be 3% Platform Fee + $3 per gift. If you give to multiple nonprofits in one transaction, the 3% platform fee and $3.00 ACH fee apply to each donation.

These are standard charges from each credit card company for donations made online. All donations are final and cannot be refunded. Any donations processed outside of FLXGives donation period, through GiveGab.com, or subsequent recurring donations are subject to transaction fees outlined on the GiveGab.com pricing page: http://info.givegab.com/pricing.

Q. Will my donors get a receipt for their donation and where will it come from?

Yes, a formal email tax acknowledgment from the event will be sent automatically as soon as the donation is made. The credit card statement will show a charge for each organization that the donor-supported. It will show the name of the organization that was donated to. For added convenience, donors who give to multiple organizations at the same time will be able to get a consolidated receipt! For offline gifts entered into the GiveGab platform, the donor will only receive an emailed receipt if you include their email address and select the option to send a receipt. If your donor needs another copy of their email tax acknowledgment, you can resend it from your giving day dashboard. Learn how to resend a receipt here.

Q. What is state charitable solicitation registration?

Nonprofits are held to a high standard of government regulation and public scrutiny. And that is with good reason! Eligible 501(c) nonprofits are exempt from federal corporate taxes and have access to public funding. These benefits are not typically available to for-profit businesses, so laws are in place to protect the public and ensure nonprofits do not abuse their financial advantages. The IRS and states all have requirements for nonprofits.

Q. Why is state charitable solicitation registration compliance important?

While 501(c) nonprofits receive key financial benefits, the penalties for non-compliance can be serious. The IRS can revoke a nonprofit’s tax exemption and impose fines that can accrue daily. The states can administratively dissolve a nonprofit corporation and levy steep financial penalties. Perhaps worst of all, an organization can lose out on a grant or large donation because it has not kept itself in good standing.

Taking a proactive approach to compliance helps ensure the sustained success of the organization. The cost of staying compliant is small in comparison to the much larger costs of noncompliance. The saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” could not be more true in this context.

Q. What are the key aspects of state charitable solicitation registration compliance?

The IRS provides tax exemptions to eligible nonprofits under IRC 501(c). Public charities and private foundations receive 501(c)(3) tax exemption. The IRS scrutinizes organizations when they apply for 501(c)(3) but also ensures that those organizations meet the ongoing obligations to remain eligible. Nonprofits must file a 990 tax form each year with the IRS to disclose their financial data for the year.

Each state has its own set of requirements. Nonprofits are typically incorporated in a given state as a nonprofit corporation. The state in which the nonprofit has incorporated will impose requirements on the nonprofit, and those responsibilities typically span across multiple state agencies. Usually, nonprofits must submit an annual filing to the corporations' division of the secretary of state, maintain its license to fundraise (charitable solicitation registration), file for a state business license, and maintain state-level tax exemption with the revenue department. As nonprofits expand outside of the state or operate nationwide, they must comply with the same items in each other state as well.

In addition to IRS and state filing requirements, nonprofits must keep adequate records. Keeping accurate and complete records is critical in the event that an organization is audited. It is also common that board members or donors request information from the organization. Finally, records are necessary for submitting applications and renewal filings with various government agencies.

Q. When I check the box on GiveGab to declare state charitable solicitation registration compliance, what am I attesting to?

When you check the box you are attesting (defined as "declaring that something exists or is the case") that your organization is compliant with applicable state fundraising requirements in the states in which you may solicit donors using the GiveGab platform.

Q. Do you have additional resources to reference state charitable solicitation registration?

Yes! Here are a few more resources from Harbor Compliance to help you:

Q. How can I ensure my organization receives its donations?

In order to receive your donations via ACH transfer, GiveGab requires a checking account eligible to receive ACH transfers and withdrawals. Your donations will be deposited within 5-7 business days on a daily rolling basis.

If your organization supplies the wrong type of bank account (such as a savings account), or the wrong account numbers, GiveGab will be in touch! After 30 days, if GiveGab hasn't heard from your organization, they will refund your gifts back to your donors.

Make sure you've entered all the required information! New verification requirements were passed in the US by financial regulators that enforce Know Your Customer (KYC) rules. These requirements exist to help create a safer and more secure financial ecosystem for online transactions. What this means for organizations is that you may be asked by GiveGab to provide additional information (phone number, personal address etc.) in order to be verified. Don't worry, this information is kept confidential and only used to comply with the KYC rules in order to safely legitimize transactions!

Q. When will prizes winnings be distributed?

If your organization wins a prize, it will be mailed to you from the Community Foundation of Elmira-Corning and the Finger Lakes within a month after the prize has been announced.

Donor FAQ

Q. Can I make donations via a mobile device?

Yes! Simply visit FLXGives.org on your mobile device, laptop, computer, tablet, or other online devices.

Q. Can I make my donation using Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Microsoft Pay?

Yes! Here is a breakdown of the requirements for each payment method:

To use the "Mobile Wallet integration" you must use HTTPS and a supported browser. In addition, each payment method and browser has specific requirements:

Apple Pay

  • Safari on Mac running macOS Sierra or later.
  • An iPhone (not an iPad; Safari doesn't support them yet) with a card in its Wallet paired to your Mac with Handoff, or a Mac with TouchID. Instructions can be found on Apple's Support site.

Mobile Safari

  • Mobile Safari on iOS 10.1 or later
  • A card in your Wallet (go to Settings → Wallet & Apple Pay)

Google Pay

Chrome Mobile for Android

Microsoft Pay

Q. Can I pre-schedule a donation for FLXGives?

You cannot pre-schedule your FLXGives gift, but you may make a donation to a participating nonprofit before or after the FLXGives. In order for your donation to be counted towards prize incentives awarded on FLXGives it must be made between 6PM and 6PM on November 16-17, 2023.

Q. Do I need to create an account with GiveGab?

No. You do not need to create an account to make a donation. The benefits of creating an account include having your tax receipts collected in one location, being able to track your donations, follow the charities you support, and engage in future volunteering and donations. Your tax receipt is emailed immediately upon processing your donation. To claim a donation as a deduction on U.S. taxes, you should retain the donation receipt as an official record.

Q. Why should I give through FLXGives as opposed to giving directly to my favorite organizations?

Great question! The FLX team always supports giving directly to the nonprofits of your choice and that's why we've designed a platform this year that will allow you to do just that, all throughout the year by enabling you to both come back and give again. While we encourage year-round and annual giving, here are the 4 main reasons to give through FLXGives as well:

  1. Year after year, FLXGives helps raise AWARENESS for the sector. By coming together one day, we are able to leverage all of our resources to promote all of the good work charities are doing in our community!
  2. FLXGives exists to SUPPORT, equip, and serve the local nonprofit community through free workshops and tools and templates that can be used to fundraise year-round. We hope to provide each and every nonprofit with the tools they need to thrive!
  3. Each year, the FLXGives team provides prize money to agencies that participate in the event. This money is spread among the different size participants and enables agencies to maximize their efforts. Nonprofits are also encouraged to seek a matching gift for their campaign. This gives them the opportunity to LEVERAGE donations during the day and incentivizes them to meet the match(s).
  4. COMMUNITY & FRIENDLY COMPETITION -Giving is contagious and by creating an entire event dedicated to supporting our local nonprofits, we can come together as a community and encourage our friends and family to give to the causes we love the most. With so many nonprofits to discover, there is a mission/cause that will speak to you!

Q. Who will receive my contact information?

The organization(s) you choose to support will have access to your name, address, phone number, and email address. This information is used solely to send thank you messages, provide the option to receive future notifications, and to notify you of future activities. Nobody else will retain your contact information.

Q. Can I give to more than 1 organization at a time?

The Gift Basket on FLXGives is your very own 'shopping cart' - this allows you the opportunity to browse around the site and add gifts to your basket without needing to check out immediately. Then when you're ready to check out, you'll just enter your bank account information once and confirm your gifts.

You can add gifts to your basket in two ways:

  1. Head to your chosen organization's profile page and click on their basket icon (It's right next to their "Donate" button!). You'll see the gift added to your basket at the top, then continue browsing to another profile page to add an additional gift, or click the Gift Basket at the top to check out!
  2. Open the Gift Basket in the top navigation bar of Missoula Gifts, and search and add gifts to one or more organizations right within the basket feature. No need to search for their profile, if you already know who you want to give to!

Q. What if my preferred organization is not listed?

Please send an email to info@communityfund.org to request that we contact your organization of choice.