FAQ's

SECA Program Questions and Answers

Q: If I disclose my name, will the charities use it to send me spam or junk mail?
A: Your name and address are specifically prohibited from being sold to any other source.

Q: I only give the minimum ($2.00 per pay period). is that large enough to make a difference?
A: Small gifts from multiple donors add up, and they also provide charities with a broad base of support.
This is particularly true when donors continue to give what they can afford year after year.

Q:  Am I obligated to continue my pledge even if I need to cancel it later in the year because my financial situation changed?
A: You can stop your SECA payroll deduction at any time by contacting your agency's payroll office.

Q: What services do the charities receive from the federations?
A: Federations provide assistance to charities in many aspects of their workplace development.

For example:

  • Marketing Strategy - Creating and delivering programs that listen to and speak to the concerns of donors.
  • Workshops - Helping member organizations, CFC, State, Local, and corporate volunteers benefit from greater employee engagement through a workplace giving campaign; more fully understand and comply with federal, state and local regulations governing these campaigns; and track recent trends in corporate and individual philanthropy
  • Application Services - Assistance to ensure accurate completion of members' applications for participation in workplace giving programs, submission of applications for members, and completion of any necessary appeals.
  • Fiscal Services - Collection and distribution of pledge data and funds to member charities in an efficient and effective manner with both additional and consolidated information.
  • Campaign Assistance and Promotion - Liaison with employer-based campaigns, companies and donors in order to expand the pool of funds potentially available to our member charities. Also, publicizing the services of member charities to potential donors in the workplace.
  • Campaign Metrics and Analytics Assist member charities in evaluating individual and all campaigns in which they participate.

Federation Questions and Answers

Q: Doesn't Special Olympics just hold one track meet per year?
A: No. Special Olympics athletes participate in 18 different sports in Illinois with over 200 competitions held through the year and throughout the state.

Q: Isn't Special Olympics just for children with Down Syndrome?
A: No. Special Olympics athlete profiles encompass 200 different intellectual disabilities (ID), some athletes also have physical disabilities. All competitions are divided by ability, so everyone of any age can participate. 

Q: Doesn't Special Olympics just provide a sports outlet for people with disabilities? 
A: No. Although Special Olympics is the world's largest sport organization, it is also the world's largest health organization for people with intellectual disabilities. People with ID are the world's most marginalized population and Special Olympics fills the gap and breeds inclusion for all. Special Olympics also has an athlete leadership programs that work with athletes on community integration/socialization, work readiness, public speaking, and unified programs in schools across the state to teach inclusion diversity and kindness to children and teens with and without disabilities. 

Q: Does giving to international causes make a long-term difference?
A: Yes! The international development work performed by Global Impact’s charity partners enables individuals and communities to be successful on their own. History shows us that investments in ending poverty can work, and benefit both the U.S. and developing countries. In the 1960s, countries such as Brazil, Korea, Taiwan and Turkey were recipients of aid dollars. Today, they are valuable trade partners that generate more than $100 billion in trade with the U.S. A little known fact: the U.S. only spends less than 1% of the federal budget on international development and humanitarian aid. That’s why it’s so important that American citizens respond individually to critical needs in the developing world.

Q: How do I know that my gift to international charities will be used effectively?
A: When you give to an international charity through Global Impact, you are giving to a thoroughly vetted charity that meets the most rigorous industry standards. Our charity partners are determined to solve global challenges like ending poverty and hunger, uplifting marginalized communities and transforming developing economies, all while minimizing costs and maximizing the impact of dollars from campaigns like SECA. And we know that international development works – the percentage of those living in extreme poverty fell from 36% to 10% in just 30 years, and maternal and child mortality rates have been cut in half. Life expectancy is on the rise, and we’ve begun to eliminate diseases like polio and drastically reduce rates of HIV/AIDS around the world.

Q: How can I support charities responding to global disasters if I give through work?
A: When you give to a Global Impact charity through SECA your contributions are unrestricted, which means charities are allowed to direct the gift to where the need is greatest. This helps charities prepare for disasters before they occur and gives them the flexibility to respond quickly when a disaster strikes. After a crisis has passed, your recurring contribution can help build back stronger, more resilient communities. Most Global Impact charities address disaster response in their work, so wherever you choose to give you can rest assured that these organizations will be ready when they’re needed.

Q: Does Black United Fund of Illinois, Inc. (BUFI) support only African American people?
A: Black United Fund of Illinois, Inc. has affiliate organizations that support everyone in all communities, regardless of nationality. BUFI prides itself on addressing the needs of all people.

Q: Is the Black United Fund of Illinois, Inc. (BUFI) a social justice organization?
A:  BUFI has organizations that address social justice, but BUFI has a wraparound program to insulate school age children going to and from school. BUFI also helps first generation high school students prepare for college.

Q: How Long has the Black United Fund of Illinois, Inc. (BUFI) been a federation?
A: BUFI has been a federation for 36 years with a few affiliate organizations that started from its inception. BUFI’s belief is that “helping people help themselves” will empower economic independence and social change.

Q: How many scholarships are awarded by UNCF each year?
A: UNCF annually awards more than 10,000 scholarships totaling more that 100 million dollars and through more than 400 programs.
Q: Does UNCF only support African American students attending historically black colleges and universities?
A: No, UNCF supports students of all races and ethnicities attending majority universities and historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). UNCF HBCU admit students without reference to race or ethnicity.

Q: Does UNCF provide internships?
A: Yes, many UNCF programs offer students the opportunity to supplement classroom learning with paid, hands-on experience in professions they may be considering. UNCF works in concert with our partners to develop, promote, and support internships for UNCF Scholars.