For the better part of a year, Michelle Smith, director of corporate
relations, has revamped, retooled and promoted Emorys workplace
giving program to anyone who would listen.
Finally, after all those months of preparation, on Oct.1, EmoryGives debuted.
That daylast MondaySmith made the rounds. In the morning she
met with Emorys top administrators to brief them on the launch.
Later in the day, she accepted a pair of large donations. The next day,
she attended a breakfast to honor employees who donated at least $1,000
to the program.
And most every day from now until the programs close on Dec. 31,
Smith will speak to a group or an organization or an office on campus,
urging people to support the participating local charities.
Without question, the project has gotten off to a rollicking start. While
EmoryGives didnt officially kick off until this month, information
packets were distributed to employees during the last week of September.
Once October rolled around, the program had already received $55,000 in
Then on Day One, Smith received an individual donation of $10,000. A $6,000
donation quickly followed. That meant more than $70,000 had been collected
in less than 48 hours. That is just a great way to start off the
campaign. I like it, Smith said.
The Universitywide campaign goal is $415,000, up from last years
goal of $380,000, and the programs participation goal is 14 percentjust
2,500 of Emorys 18,000 employees. Last year, donations totaled $471,842,
and Emory employees providing more than $382,000 of that amount.
Smith, though, has her sights set higher.
I think we can make half a million [dollars], I really do,
she said. The way it can be done, she said, is for everyone to give just
a little. Five dollars here and $10 there adds up quickly. People
might think that small gifts dont matter, but they do, she
Symbolic of EmoryGives new look is its new logo. Gone are the thermometer
signs from all over campus, and in their places are freshly minted hourglassesan
object chosen with quite a bit of forethought.
The hourglass is symbolic in two ways, Smith said. First, there is the
idea that time, like sand, is running out. There is a sense of urgency,
she said. There are needs that have to be met.
Secondly, there is the image of renewal: When the sand reaches the bottom,
when the effort is expended, turn it over and begin again.
One of the most notable parts of EmoryGives is its wide coverage. Where
there once was one partner, now there are six: Community Health Charities
of Georgia, Earth Share of Georgia, the Georgia Black United Fund, Georgia
Shares, the United Fund of Covington-Newton County and Emorys longtime
teammatethe United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta.
Within the program, employees are able to donate to the Red Cross, one
of the most popular charities over the past few weeks, through the United
Way. The Salvation Army and the September 11th Fund (dedicated to victims
of the terrorist attacks) are United Way participants as well. To give
to those specific charities, simply indicate them when donating. Giving
to the September 11th Fund requires a one-time payment; all other gifts
to all other charities will be by payroll deduction. Money given to the
September 11th Fund will go directly to victims of the terrorist attacksnone
will go toward administration.
Another new aspect of the EmoryGives is the creation of Emory Angels.
The Angels are employees who donate $1,000 or more to any of the six charitable
partners, and the breakfast Smith attended on Oct. 2 honored the first
10. John Weiland, chair of the advisory council of the Center for Ethics,
was the keynote speaker.