The United Way Certification Standards for Member Agencies were developed to assist donors in making sound giving decisions and to foster public confidence in United Way and its member agencies. These standards seek to encourage fair and honest solicitation practices, promote ethical conduct, and encourage the use of best practices for organizational management. Certification also ensures consistency with United Way impact goals.
The certification process was developed over ten years ago by a committee including United Way staff, volunteers, and member agency representatives using successful models from around the county and nonprofit standards from the Better Business Bureau. It is reviewed and adjusted annually.
Agencies that comply with these standards have provided documentation that they meet basic standards:
In how they govern their organization,
In the effectiveness of their operations,
In the ways they spend their money, and
In the truthfulness of their representations.
In addition to the specific areas addressed in the standards, United Way of Monroe County encourages member agencies to maintain an organizational commitment to accountability that transcends specific standards and places a priority on openness and ethical behavior in the agency's programs and activities.
All United Way member agencies are health and human service agencies that provide services in at least one of United Way’s priority areas and address a need that would be otherwise un-met. All certified agencies complete the process every three years. Any agency interested in becoming certified, and therefore becoming a member agency, completes the same process. Only certified member agencies will have the opportunity to apply for allocations from the United Way Community Action Fund.
Every year, one third of the member agencies submit a thorough self-study to the United Way Certification Review Panel. The Review Panel is a group of approximately 12 community volunteers who carefully review the application and then visit the agency to learn more about the organization and verify the information in the application. Agencies that meet the standards are recommended to the United Way Board for certification.
All member agencies annually provide documents that ensure the agency is remaining healthy and is making progress on community goals. Agencies can be de-certified if, at any point, they fall out of compliance with certification standards. To assist member agencies in their important work, United Way provides them with information, technical assistance, training opportunities, public recognition, networking, and funding through the allocations process.
United Way of Monroe County creates and sustains solutions for our community by ensuring people have the building blocks of opportunity. To make certain the Community Action Fund has the optimal impact on our community, United Way uses a volunteer-driven allocations process. The process was developed over ten years ago by a committee including United Way staff, volunteers, and member agency representatives based on successful models from around the county. It is reviewed and adjusted annually.
Member agencies can request funds for services that will help accomplish one or more of our ten community goals. One-third of the member agencies submit an application every year to the United Way Vision Council.
The Vision Council is a group of approximately 12 community volunteers who carefully review the application and the agency's budget in the context of recent information about community needs and opportunities. Vision Council members record preliminary scores and compose questions for the agencies. After a presentation by each agency, final allocation recommendations are forward to the United Way Board for approval.
Allocation grants are based on an agency's capacity, the demand for its services, and its impact on the community.
Allocations are determined separately from any other funding United Way might provide to member agencies, including designations, Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds, Combined Federal Campaign distributions, or special capacity-building grants.