FAQs

What kind of fundraiser can I host?

You can plan a campaign in memory of a loved one or to celebrate a special occasion. You can plan an event at work, in school or your community. You’ll find a few ways to get started in the Event Ideas document in your Fundraise for CRS dashboard. But don’t stop there—get creative! Your only limit is your imagination. Make sure your event doesn’t conflict with Catholic Relief Services’ mission or Catholic social teaching

How much money do I need to raise?

As much or as little as you want! All of the money you raise supports CRS’ mission to serve the poor and vulnerable overseas, so even a small amount is valuable. But don’t be afraid to be ambitious when setting your fundraising goal.

What will the money I raise be used for?

Your contribution goes toward feeding hungry families, protecting vulnerable children, helping farmers grow better crops, and providing health care and clean water to remote communities. And to helping CRS respond immediately to emergencies. We reach 85 million people without regard to race, religion or nationality. CRS maintains strict standards of efficiency, accountability and transparency: 92% of expenditures go directly to these lifesaving programs.

Can I specify which project I want my money to go to?

Unless designated for a specific emergency, donations will be contributed to our general fund, allowing us to respond immediately to the next crisis or emergency.

What is Fundraise for CRS?

Fundraise for CRS is an online platform that helps you raise funds for Catholic Relief Services. You can use Fundraise for CRS to set up a personal fundraising page to celebrate a special occasion, honor a loved one, host an event, or raise awareness and funds to support an emergency. Fundraise for CRS lets you share your page via social media, invite your friends and family to support you via email, set a donation goal, track your progress and more.

What is the Fundraise for CRS dashboard?

The Fundraise for CRS dashboard is your one-stop shop for setting up and managing your personal fundraising page. Your dashboard is the first page you see each time you log in. From the dashboard, you can customize your personal page, see who has donated to your campaign, browse photos and videos to use on social media, and find other resources to make your campaign a success.

How do I customize my personal fundraising page?

When you first set up your fundraising page, it will be filled with generic text. You may want to customize your page so potential donors know why you’re passionate about CRS. You can edit the text and photos on your page from your Fundraise for CRS dashboard. From the dashboard, click on the Edit Your Page link on the left. From there, you will be able to create a custom URL for your page, add a photo of your own or one from our Photo and Video Resources, change your fundraising goal, and edit page content and settings.

How does Catholic Relief Services support my event or campaign?

CRS provides a number of resources to support your fundraiser.

  • Free access to the Fundraise for CRS platform and features, including a customizable personal fundraising page
  • Photo and video resources to use in promotional materials
  • News stories, program information and educational resources available at crs.org
  • Fundraising Toolkit with tips and ideas to make your campaign or event a success
  • Sample to-do list and timeline
  • Use of CRS name and logo in connection with the event
  • Recognition of top individual and team fundraisers on Fundraise for CRS website
  • Access to our Community Giving Advisor, Laura Maguire. You can email Laura at laura.maguire@crs.org or call her at 800-235-2772, ext. 7171.
Does Catholic Relief Services provide any financial support to cover expenses associated with my fundraiser?

No, CRS does not fund expenses incurred in connection with your fundraising campaign or event. If you anticipate any expenses, we suggest that you seek out local sponsors.

Can I use some of the money from donations to cover expenses?

No. Donations made to your fundraiser should not be used to cover expenses. Local sponsorships are a great way to offset costs associated with your fundraiser.

Yes. You may use the CRS logo in connection with your fundraiser, subject to the following terms and conditions:

  • You may not change or alter the logo in any way
  • If the event benefits more than one charity, the CRS logo should appear in the same size as the other charity’s logo
  • CRS reserves the right to revoke the use of the logo at any time
Can I use Catholic Relief Services’ name on my fundraising page, promotional materials, or other event or campaign activities?

Yes. You may use the CRS name in connection with your fundraiser, subject to the following terms and conditions:

  • If you solicit donations of goods and/or services for an auction or other event, clearly state that you are soliciting for an event that will benefit CRS, and that you are hosting the event (not CRS)
  • All promotional materials must clearly state what percentage, or dollar amount, of the sales or admission price will be donated to CRS. You must state that your event is “benefiting CRS” or a “donation will be made to CRS” as opposed to stating that “a portion of the proceeds will support CRS.”
Are there any guidelines I should be aware of before planning my event or campaign?

Yes. Please be sure to review and adhere to CRS’ Guidelines for Fundraising.

Are donations collected through my personal fundraiser tax deductible?

Yes, but only for monetary donations given directly to CRS. This includes credit card donations made through Fundraise for CRS, checks made payable to CRS and cash donations linked to an individual. If you are sending multiple checks to CRS at one time, tax receipts will be sent to the name and address listed on each check. Cash donations should be converted to a check or money order and include the name and address to which a tax receipt should be sent. CRS cannot provide tax receipts for goods, like items for auction, or services, like advertisements and printing, donated to your event.

What is a matching gift and how does it work?

A matching gift is when a secondary donor agrees to contribute a gift that “matches,” or doubles, the contribution made by another donor.

  • Many employers will match the charitable contributions their employees make. You or your supporters can find out if an employer matches gifts on CRS’ Matching Gifts page. If the company does match gifts, please mail their completed matching gift form to Catholic Relief Services, P.O. Box 17090, Baltimore, Maryland 21297.
  • As part of your fundraising campaign, you can seek out a sponsor to match any gifts made within a certain period of time—often one day. A “matching day” is a great way to incentivize new donors to give to your campaign.
Can I count offline donations (checks and cash) on my personal fundraising page?

Yes. When you’re logged into your Fundraise for CRS account, click on Donations in the top navigation bar. Go to the Add Offline Donation tab to enter check and cash donations. You can include the donor’s name so they are credited on your page. You will still need to send the check and cash to CRS at the address provided.

Who should donors make their checks out to?

Check should be written directly to Catholic Relief Services. Please write Community Giving in the memo line.

What should I do if someone donates cash?

We advise you to convert all cash donations to either a check or money order before mailing to CRS. Tax receipts will only be sent to the names and addresses on the check or money order.

Will CRS accept nonmonetary contributions that I raise through my event, like clothing?

No. CRS cannot accept nonmonetary contributions.

Where should I mail offline donations raised through my event or campaign?

Catholic Relief Services, P.O. Box 17090, Baltimore, MD 21297-0303

How quickly should I send in the donations?

Please mail any check or cash donations to CRS as soon as you can. The sooner we receive them, the faster we can process them and send acknowledgements and tax receipts to donors.

Are there other ways to support Catholic Relief Services?

Yes! There are many ways to get involved with Catholic Relief Services beyond giving.

  • Pray. As Catholics in the United States, we recognize that prayer is of the utmost importance, an invaluable contribution to helping the poor overseas.
  • Learn. Knowledge is the first step in combating hunger, disease and injustice.
  • Act. Put your faith into action through advocacy or by participating in a CRS program like CRS Rice Bowl or Helping Hands.crs.org/get-involved to learn more.
Can I send photos from my event to CRS?

Yes. We would love to see photos from your event. Email them to our Community Giving Advisor, Laura Maguire, at laura.maguire@crs.org. In your email, please let us know if we may feature them on our website or in publications.

Is there someone I can talk to if I have questions?

Yes. You can contact our Community Giving Advisor, Laura Maguire, at laura.maguire@crs.org or 800-235-2772, ext. 7171.

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