April Fools? No, these United Way trends are true.

April 1 is known as a day to be skeptical of news releases and bold claims. I love April Fools pranks as much as anyone else. You can follow some of the best today here on Twitter.

How I wish these United Way giving trends were merely an April Fool’s joke!

As a former VP & CEO of three different United Ways, I always viewed our annual fundraising as a barometer of our engagement and resonance with the needs of the local community. If that’s true, then this should be our wakeup call.

  • Since 2004, individual donors have declined from over 13.50 to 8.35 million–a decrease of over 5 million individuals.
  • Over 50% of the United Ways in USA reported a decline in contributions in 2014.
  • Workplace campaigns still comprise over 96% of all donors and 75% of all United Way revenue.
  • Tocqueville and Mega Gifts are among the primary bright spots, representing over 20% growth since 2004.
  • However, leadership gifts are down nearly 1% over the decade, while all individual gifts are down nearly 10%.
  • Top two reasons people do not support United Way: 1) lack of personal connection to & 2) lack of knowledge about United Ways.

(Source UWW Online: 2014-15 Resource Development study, login required)

As a lifetime career United Way professional, I am gravely concerned about the future of our network and communities. We are not keeping pace with the speed and enormity of rapid technological and societal change.  This is why I started Winsightz–to address trends like these leveraging our deep UW experience with emerging technologies.

At Winsightz, we believe in the amazing potential of United Way professionals and volunteers to reverse these trends. Together, we multiply the impact of millions of individual donors well beyond anything they could do alone.

We’re assembling a team of experienced United Way & IT professionals to equip progressive organizations with new insights, inspiration and actionable strategies. To learn more about our approach, write me at winston@winsightz.com