Q: What is the Difference between a custom service and the day-to-day service provided by Activate Good?
A: Day-to-Day – Anyone can use our online volunteer center for free and sign-up for the posted opportunities there daily; Activate Good will work to help answer questions regarding the opportunity when able, but may not provide additional coordination or management services. The hosting organization is responsible for all volunteer coordination for their own projects, unless otherwise stated.
Custom – Custom services are fee-based and most appropriate for groups with budgets that want an experience based on their specific needs and goals; Activate Good handles most or all of the required coordination and management on their behalf to keep their own staff free. Return to our Corporate Services page for more info.
Q: How do I request custom services?
A: While you may email firstname.lastname@example.org at any time to begin the conversation, we very much appreciate all official requests be placed by the requesting group or company through the appropriate Request for Proposal (RFP) form:
- Click here for all custom volunteer projects (including “at will” portable projects).
- Click here for all custom service calendars/scheduling services.
Q: What is a “Custom Volunteer Project”?
A: A Custom Volunteer Project is a turn-key service project or event appropriate for team-building or networking initiatives, including but not limited to conference components, employee family days, client appreciation events, and more. Activate Good acts as your commissioned event planner specifically for the service project/event and handles all necessary tasks on your behalf, including purchasing and processing of project supplies, liaise with the beneficiary, day-of project management, and more. Click here for examples of past Custom Volunteer Projects. Custom projects come with a management fee, supply budget, and any other agreed fees to cover requested services.
Q: What is an “At Will Portable Project”?
A: Effective July 2019: An At Will Portable Project is still considered a Custom Volunteer Project. But because we want volunteering to be accessible, we’re introducing this option for small teams that may have smaller budgets and need a service option at their offices. Instead of providing full, turn-key management of your service day, we only charge a nominal service fee to cover pre-project support. Supply budgets still apply. What does that look like? We purchase, store, and prep all the project supplies, lock in a beneficiary, and deliver or ship the ready supplies to your team – complete with instructions and all the information you need to get the finished project to the beneficiary. The company is responsible for the cost and scheduling of shipping to the beneficiary by an agreed on date. Post-project reporting is not available. This comes with a service fee plus supply budget.
Q: What is “Custom Service Scheduling / Custom Calendar”?
A: Volunteer scheduling is most appropriate for groups with a budget that desire a more regular volunteer initiative. Annual days or frequency can be set in advance, or ad hoc requests may be agreed to annually. Activate Good coordinates your projects for you; all you need to do is make sure your volunteers show up. Activate Good may or may not provide management assistance the day of your project, depending on your request and budget. A management fee is required when Activate Good staff is requested on-site to launch a project; a service fee is applied for referral-only contracts. A supply budget to support your host is suggested, but not required.
Q: What fees are there for custom services?
A: When requesting a custom project, event, or service calendar – there is always a Management Fee OR Service Fee. These fees support our team during the planning and implementation and/or support of your project, but also provides crucial funding support that enables Activate Good to continue other free, daily programs as youth and family volunteering. Custom Volunteer Projects also require a Supply Budget. Service Calendars have a suggested supply budget. In some cases with a short notice of the request, the Management Fee or Service Fee may incur an additional rush fee.
Q: What do Management Fees cover?
A: Management Fees cover the staff time that is required to successfully fulfill any custom project request – including scoping needs of potential beneficiaries; coordination with the confirmed beneficiary; any required purchasing, inventory and supply prep pre-project; day-of project management of the volunteer activities; post-project follow-up, etc. Management fees may also be applied for custom service calendars/scheduling when our staff is requested on-site to launch a service activity for your team, completing some photography, sign-in and impact collection, etc.
Q: What makes “Service Fees” different from “Management Fees?”
A: A Management Fee is applied when Activate Good staff are needed to provide any level of day-of management of people at a project. A Service Fee is applied when Activate Good’s staff is not needed to provide management of people at a project; only pre-project support services are provided.
Q: Why is there a rush fee for custom project requests submitted with less than 6 weeks notice?
A: After submitting any request, a period of time is needed to allow opportunity to discuss your needs/vision, confirm a beneficiary’s needs/abilities, finalize paperwork – including payment prior to supply purchases – and more to prepare for an awesome service event. The rush fee helps cover additional costs incurred by Activate Good during a short-notice project to ensure a quick turnaround, including but not limited to staff overtime, hiring additional short-term help, expedited shipping of supplies, etc.
Q: What do supply budgets cover, and why?
A: Supply budgets are used to purchase items supporting the volunteer activities planned for the day and any directly related costs (e.g., supply storage). The supply budget could also include special requests like group transportation options, professional photography, employee lunches, and more.
Q: If there is remaining supply budget after my project/day of service, what happens?
A: Activate Good always works to secure the best prices. In the event of remaining supply budget after your requested project, we will work with you to either reallocate those funds to support other internal programming as a sponsor, or issue a refund.
Q: Why is there a suggested supply budget for my company’s volunteer scheduling?
A: Regardless of the task, volunteering does have a cost for the hosting nonprofit / beneficiary, including but not limited to staff time. When larger groups of 25 to 30 people, or more, seek to volunteer with most causes, it can become hard for the host to engage such a large number of volunteers with only daily tasks. Providing a supply budget can support a truly unique experience for your group by: supporting the purchase of supplies or tools that the beneficiary may not already have to engage a larger number of volunteers efficiently; and possibly even achieve a task on their wishlist.
Q: What is your invoicing/payment policy for custom service contracts?
A: All custom services are very different from other ways you may support our organization (sponsorship, etc.). Because of this, there is a more formal business structure with PIA (payment in advance) guidelines and best practices. At the time you choose to move forward with any custom service proposal:
- Activate Good will provide a custom service agreement that includes payment terms.
- A counter-sign of that agreement is required, and demonstrates that you have read and acknowledge all terms.
- An invoice outlining the fees for service will also be provided with a summary of the payment terms/due date; this includes management or service fees, supply budgets, and any other related funds agreed per contract.
- PIA: Our general policy is to receive full payment of all fees for service prior to a contract’s start date, which determines the due date on the invoice and agreement.
Receipt of payment by the due date is especially important for Custom Volunteer Projects. For these contracts, we consider the contract to begin with the start of any required site visits and supply purchasing or other tasks that would incur out-of-pocket expenses for our nonprofit. We usually request payment by no less than 45 days prior to any Custom Volunteer Project. The actual due date, however, may be more or less, and is dependent on the unique scope and scale of each contract.
Please consider your own timelines for payment processing in advance; we are more than happy to discuss options and work together during the RFP process to consider special arrangements and timelines. We thank you in advance for your understanding and support as we strive to maintain responsible accounting practices and business standards!
Q: Can Activate Good accept payment by credit card/online?
A: Yes. A link to that online payment form, along with contact info for support, is included in each invoice provided by Activate Good.
Please note that there is a required 3% processing fee for such payments. This processing fee covers the amount charged to Activate Good per payment processed. As a trusted nonprofit partner, we thank you for your support in covering this fee, which allows us to continue offering this convenience.
Q: Are my payments to Activate Good tax deductible?
A: Only supply fees paid to Activate Good are tax deductible; other fees paid to Activate Good for management or support services or processing fees are not tax deductible. If any suggested supply fees for volunteer scheduling are reimbursed to or managed by your host cause for any service event (i.e., not managed directly by Activate Good), then tax claims would be confirmed with that organization.
Q: If I’m a Triangle Corporate Volunteer Council (CVC) member, how does my discount apply to custom services?
A: CVC members benefit from a 10% discount on Management Fees only. This discount does not apply to Supply Budgets, as Activate Good is unable to cover the cost of supplies independently. This discount also does not apply to Service Fees; these fees are already nominal and cover only what is needed to cover necessary staff time to properly support your request. Please refer to the above information for what defines each funding type.