MIT will launch its 2000 Community Giving at MIT campaign today with a kick-off in the first floor lobby of the Stratton Student Center from 11:30am-1:30pm. Everyone is invited to stop by to sample refreshments, listen to a lively jazz band and learn more about the programs and agencies supported by the United Way and the Community Service Fund (CSF). An American Cancer Society representative will also be on hand to do cancer screening.
Last year, as a pilot program, the CSF was listed as a donation recipient through the Community Giving Campaign. That experiment succeeded in generating the traditional level of funding for the CSF, so MIT will now run only one charitable giving campaign each year, with the CSF incorporated into the annual Community Giving Campaign in the fall rather than having a separate campaign in the spring.
Institute Professor John Deutch, this year's campaign chair, will be at today's kickoff, as will co-chair William Wohlfarth of Facilities and other members of MIT's Community Giving steering committee, as well as representatives of the CSF and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay (UWMB).
This year's Community Giving Campaign -- which benefits UWMB, the MIT Community Service Fund and other charities -- runs from November 1 through December 29. MIT's goal is to raise $350,000 or more from members of the MIT community to help local programs and agencies that need it the most -- including children, families, elders, the disabled, victims of domestic violence and the homeless.
Last year, 1,185 MIT community members made gifts or pledges totaling close to $350,000; 92 of those were at the Leadership Giving level of $1,000 or more. UWMB's goal this year is $54 million, up from $51 million last year.
A letter to the MIT community from President Charles M. Vest announcing this year's campaign and asking for the community's participation was sent out this week. Personalized pledge form packets will also be sent to all MIT employees via interdepartmental mail. The steering committee encourages people to fill in and return the pledge forms to their department solicitors as soon as possible, or to send the forms directly to the Campaign Headquarters in Rm 50-005. A list of department solicitors appointed may be found on the Community Giving web site at .
The pledge forms make it possible to give to United Way agencies, as well as the CSF, which supports several Cambridge charitable organizations, or other local qualified 501(c)(3) human-services agencies of the donor's choice. Donors can opt for the payroll-deduction plan, a one-time gift using a personal check or credit card payment, or gifts of securities, property, stocks or other forms of planned giving.
Everyone who makes a gift to the campaign will be automatically entered into an end-of-campaign raffle for prizes donated by local merchants. Further details will be announced later.
During the campaign, various supporting events will be held, including a book fair on Wednesday, Nov. 15 from 10am-4pm in the lobby of the Stratton Student Center. Proceeds from the fair will be given to the United Way and the CSF to be used where the need is greatest.
The annual clothing and nonperishable food drive will run from December 4-15. Future articles in MIT Tech Talk will provide more information about these events.
Anyone with questions about the Community Giving at MIT campaign may contact Elizabeth Mulcahy, campaign manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Annmarie Cameron Foley at email@example.com. The campaign is headquartered in Rm 50-005 at x3-7914.
Volunteer stories sought
MIT Tech Talk would like to profile members of the MIT community who donate their time and effort to local nonprofit social service agencies helped by the United Way or the MIT Community Service Fund. If you or someone you know does volunteer work for one of these agencies, contact Denise Brehm, Tech Talk associate editor, at x3-5401 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 1, 2000.