NIEHS kicks off CFC and boosts pledge goal
By Eddy Ball
The great chili chefs of NIEHS were back on the job Sept. 18, as the Institute kicked off its 2012 Greater North Carolina Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) drive. Working from tables set up in the main building’s lobby, volunteers served up virtually every imaginable iteration of chili as part of a drive to raise $115,000 in charitable pledges from NIEHS employees, by the conclusion of the campaign Dec. 15.
CFC at NIEHS is part of the world’s largest workplace giving campaign. When Director of the Office of the CFC Keith Willingham, spoke to federal employees as the 2012 drive began in Washington, D.C., Sept. 1, he said, “2011 was not only the 50th anniversary of the creation of the CFC by President John F. Kennedy — it also marked the first time total pledges have exceeded $7 billion since the inception of the CFC.”
That total included $113,000 in 2011 pledges by NIEHS employees, part of a total of $272 million in pledges from almost one million federal employees.
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New leadership for 2012 drive
This year’s coordinators are Office of Management employees Claire Long, a member of Associate Director for Management Joellen Austin’s staff, and Scott Redman, of the Financial Management Branch. Like their predecessors, they will enjoy the enthusiastic support of NIEHS/NTP Director Linda Birnbaum, Ph.D., who opened the cook-off by welcoming employees to the opening of the 2012 campaign and encouraging everyone at NIEHS to participate.
“Even in this tremendously tight economy,” Birnbaum said, “people are really, really understanding that there are those in our community who need help.” She emphasized that pledges, one-time gifts, and even loose change in the CFC jars on campus add up and translate into help for those who need it.
Birnbaum urged employees to look through the CFC Charity List, with its 2,861 approved charities, ranging from hometown relief organizations, such as the Durham Rescue Mission, to large international efforts. The list supplies information about each charity, including the percentage of revenue it devotes to administrative costs.
Advantages of giving through CFC
Birnbaum referred to several of the five compelling reasons for making a pledge through CFC, listed by John Berry, director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), which oversees the national CFC campaign:
- It offers payment by payroll deduction, which lets employees spread their contributions across the entire year.
- It gives charities a steady source of revenue throughout the year.
- It has low overhead costs, so more money goes to the charity.
- It is convenient for employees, who can pledge online and have documentation for their tax records.
- It shows all Americans that federal employees care about their communities.