GCU employees asked to Donate to Elevate

November 19, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By Laurie Merrill
GCU News Bureau

As it kicks off its fourth year, Grand Canyon University’s Donate to Elevate campaign is seeking the largest contributions yet — $1.5 million — and the highest employee participation rate — 85 percent — in the state tax diversion program.

Randy Bellah

Randy Bellah

Randy Bellah, director of academic alliances support at GCU, said it’s a tall, but realistic, objective.

“Employees are changing lives by giving,” Bellah said this week during a meeting of the designated University champions who will present Donate to Elevate to their respective departments through mid-February. “You are our ministry. You are loving on others.”

GCU started the program in 2013, added Habitat for Humanity as a beneficiary in 2015 and has enjoyed steep increases in both employee participation and money raised every year. Employees contributed $218,000 in 2013, $349,000 in 2014 and $869,000 in 2015.

Here are some facts about Donate to Elevate:

  • Employee pay is not affected. There is no difference in your take-home pay.
  • Through the University’s payroll system, you can choose to have your state tax dollars diverted to educational and community partners.
  • The three avenues of charitable contributions are School Choice Arizona (qualified private schools), public schools or Habitat for Humanity. To read a story about a Phoenix teenager who has benefited from Donate to Elevate, click here.
  • Last year, 789 employees donated to Habitat for Humanity, 751 donated to private schools and 158 donated to public schools.
  • Employees in departments with 85 percent participation are eligible to each receive one-half of a Lopes Day off, Bellah said. Last year, an average of 33 percent of employees participated, he said.
  • The redirected funds are pre-tax dollars, GCU payroll handles the paperwork, and employees receive a statement at tax time.
  • The contribution cap for School Choice Arizona is $545 per year for single tax filers and $1,090 for married couples filing jointly. For Habitat for Humanity, the tax cap is $200 for single tax filers and $400 for married couples filing jointly.
  • For more information, click here.

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