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Matching gifts program

Spirit of Giving Match Program

The Spirit of Giving Match Program is designed to match donations by Westar Energy employees. The minimum annual gift that will be matched is $100, and the maximum gift is $500 per household, per year, excluding Higher Education matches.

Spirit of Giving Matches can be matched through a donation of time or dollars through the following components:

Volunteer Time Match
  • Employees that reach 50 hours - $100.
  • Employees that reach 125 hours - additional $150.
  • $75,000 annual cap.
Nonprofit Board Service Match
  • At least 20 hours of volunteer time.
  • 2:1 match.
  • Maximum match of $1,000/employee/year.
  • $75,000 annual cap.
Nonprofit Donation Match
  • 1:1 match.
  • Maximum match of $500/employee/year. 
  • $50,000 annual cap.
Department Team Building Service Match
  • Donate $1,000 to an organization where five or more employees conduct an external team building service project for a minimum of one half of a day.
  • Project can account for four of the eight hours of volunteer release time offered to employees.
  • $25,000 annual cap.
  • Contact Foundation President directly to request this match.

All Spirit of Giving Matches (excluding Higher Education) will be made to nonprofit tax-exempt organizations under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, within the Westar Energy service territory, and should fall into one of these categories:

  • Children and youths.
  • Elderly.
  • Arts and Culture.
  • Environmental stewardship.
  • Social service organizations - such as emergency assistance organizations, homeless shelters humane societies, etc.
The Spirit of Giving Matching program excludes the following organizations
  • Organizations without an IRS 501(c)(3) designation.
  • Organizations outside the Westar Energy service territory.
  • Fraternal, ethnic, religious or social organizations.
  • Local youth or athletic programs.
  • Individual Scout troops, 4-H clubs.
  • Individual athletic teams or clubs.
  • Primary and secondary school-related functions (after-prom, carnivals, trips).
  • Political organizations/campaigns.
  • Medical research or disease campaigns/walks.
  • Direct assistance to individuals, individual sponsorships or fund-raising efforts.
  • Conference, convention, meeting or golf sponsorships.
  • Public or private schools or their foundations.
  • Organizations or activities that do not advance our public or corporate purpose.
Spirit of Giving Matching Program Guidelines
  • The contributions must be a personal gift of the eligible donor.
  • The contributions must be paid, not merely pledged, by the donor.
  • The Spirit of Giving matches will be paid quarterly.
  • The recipient institution must acknowledge matching fits made on or before Dec. 31 no later than Jan. 31 of the following year.
  • The recipient institution must be located in Kansas. No matches will be sent outside the state.
  • Marketable securities will be eligible gifts for purposes of matching for value up to $1,000 per household per calendar year. The value of such securities for matching purposes will be the average price (between the low and high quotation, if available, and if not, the fair market value) on the date the gift was made.

Higher Education Match institution guidelines

In order to qualify for the Higher Education Match Program, a recipient organization must meet the following requirements:

  • Colleges or universities based in Kansas offering at least a two-year program of study.
  • 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status.
  • Accreditation by a nationally recognized regional or professional association.
The Higher Education Matching gifts exclude the following:
  • Dues payable to national or local alumni groups, fraternities or sororities.
  • Gifts-in-kind (e.g., personal or real property, other than securities; value of personal services).
  • Gifts for non-scholastic programs or athletics departments and programs including stadium construction or building funds.
  • Payment in lieu of tuition, books or other student fees.
  • Gifts fixed by a school as a condition for student enrollment.
  • Gifts affording the donor special privileges or benefits, such as preferred seating at athletic events, options to purchase preferred seating, use of athletics facilities and special parking privileges.
  • Gifts made jointly by several individuals or on behalf of an ineligible participant.

Administrative Conditions

  • The Westar Energy Foundation reserves the right to amend or discontinue this program, in whole or part, at any time without notice.
  • The Westar Energy Foundation reserves the right to verify the eligibility of any gift before paying the matching gift.
  • The Westar Energy Foundation will determine the interpretation, application and administration of the program, and its decision will be final.

Your gift, your choice

The Your Gift, Your Choice campaign is Westar's employee giving campaign that features a slate of organizations tailored to each work location, based on input from employees. The campaign includes organizations such as Meals on Wheels, Habitat for Humanity, Harvesters, Flint Hills Breadbasket, Kansas Food Bank Warehouse and United Way, just to name a few. The amount of direction of the employee's gift will be their choice. The Westar Energy Foundation offers a $1:$1 match to employee pledges.

2016 Campaign Results

  • $539,200 in pledges
  • Combined with the matching corporate gift, Westar Energy and its employees will give a total of more than $1,078,400.
  • 90 nonprofit organizations will benefit from our combined giving.
  • 674 employees gave to more than one charity.
  • Average gift was $349.00.
  • 14 company locations had 100 percent participation.

This year's results are outstanding. Significant dollars were raised in support of community groups. For those in need, donated time and dollars pledged are the greatest gift.

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