10 Takeaways from Leadership Conference

by Sarah Rayman in Focus on Philanthropy

Leadership Conference Recap and Tips for Vice President of Community Relations Officers

Thank you to all that attended the 2020 Leadership Conferences in Los Angeles, CA and Arlington, VA! We hope that you learned a lot from your sessions and from your sisters across North America! Below we have compiled a list of top 10 takeaways for your Community Relations Department officers:


#1 Submit your event

Submitting your event is the first thing you should do on your event-planning to do list! When you do this, you notify the Foundation of your event and sign up for GiveSmart, This will ensure that your event is created and your listed admins have access. Click here to sign up and learn more about Alpha Phi Foundation’s partnership with Givesmart.


#2 Do NOT use Venmo

Chapter should not use Venmo to collect tax-deductible donations. It puts the chapter at risk. Instead, utilize GiveSmart’s CardConnect credit card swiper and text-to-give feature to collect donations on-the-go at your event.


#3 Change your dollar bills into a money order

Officers should not send cash donations in the mail. Instead complete a safe and secure money order for all cash and coins collected at your event! Always get another set of eyes when counting cash, too.


#4 Connect to the VPCR Facebook group

Join the Facebook group! This is a great platform to ask fellow VPCRs for tips, advice, and inspiration.  Receive weekly community relations tips and connect with Foundation and Fraternity staff to get your questions answered.


#5 Chapters are not 501(c)(3) charitable organizations

While Alpha Phi Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, Alpha Phi chapters are recognized by the IRS as 501(c)(7) organizations or a social club. Chapters are not able to use the Foundation’s sales tax exemption for their event expenses.


#6 Order CardConnect swipers

Connect your on-site credit card donations and your GiveSmart campaign by using CardConnect swipers! Order CardConnect at least one week in advance to ensure a seamless check out process at any event.


#7 Refer to GiveSmart resources

Utilize GiveSmart’s resources for quick guides, webinars, and check lists to get you event-ready! To access the GiveSmart resources, you will need admin access to your chapter’s GiveSmart account. Not an admin? Contact your VPCR or email chaptergiving@alphaphifounda.wpengine.com


#8 Collect outstanding balances on GiveSmart

Before you close your event and request for disbursement, make sure to collect all outstanding balances! You will not receive your funds until all outstanding balances are paid. To access the GiveSmart resources, you will need admin access to your chapter’s GiveSmart account. Not an admin? Contact your VPCR or email chaptergiving@alphaphifounda.wpengine.com


#9 Have a plan for GiveSmart disbursement

If you need your ticket sales early to pay event costs, consider early disbursement from GiveSmart! Disbursement ticketing requests must total at least $2,000 and be submitted at least 2 months prior.


#10 Ask the experts!

If you have questions about GiveSmart, reach out to chaptergiving@alphaphifounda.wpengine.com or our GiveSmart Account Manager. We are your best chapter philanthropy resources!


Bonus! Take advantage of all the resources on our online Philanthropy Toolkit. From budget templates and the non-profit status letter, to event planning ideas and GiveSmart FAQs, the Philanthropy Toolkit has everything you need to host successful philanthropy events.

Go to the Philanthropy Toolkit resources now

Thank you again for attending Alpha Phi Leadership Conference and for all your philanthropic contributions to Alpha Phi Foundation.

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