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FAQ Tuesday: How does UWCK spend my donation?

How does United Way spend my donation? I’ve heard different stories about how charitable donations go to executive salaries rather than people in need. How is this handled at UWCK?

Simply put, money raised here stays here to make the greatest possible impact in our community. Most pledges to UWCK are not designated for a certain destination, such as a specific nonprofit agency or program. Those dollars go into the Community Impact Fund and are allocated by volunteers from all 5 of UWCK’s counties who spend nearly 1,000 hours vetting applicants, evaluating their effectiveness and efficiency. They review funding requests, analyze the needs of the community, and conduct Q & A sessions with applicants to make informed decisions in allocating dollars entrusted to United Way. A complete listing of United Way of Central Kentucky’s 25 funded agencies and their 35 programs made possible through your donations can be found on our website and are included on all of our pledge forms.

Our fundraising and administrative cost percentage, or “overhead rate” is 16.4%, well below the 35% recommended by the Better Business Bureau. That means more than 83 cents of every dollar goes directly to a program or service. Our local Executive Salary information is disclosed publicly on our IRS Form 990 which is also available on our website, along with our annual reports and approved budget for the current fiscal year. In addition, UWCK is a member of the Better Business Bureau and has been vetted to meet all 20 standards of charitable accountability.  Read the BBB report on our work at  

We are proud to have such low administrative costs, made possible by generous in-kind donations and through the volunteer manpower provided by our AmeriCorps VISTA program.  Because of this support, last year UWCK added $3.70 in value to every $1 raised.  Funding invested through our grants process has an additional ripple effect, resulting in a multi-million dollar impact on our region each year.  Thank you to our dedicated community for supporting our work in so many ways so we can deliver the greatest impact possible!


We are grateful to have the type of open relationship with you- the people who make United Way of Central Kentucky possible- where you can freely share your questions and concerns.  Our goal is to help you make an informed decision regarding where to give your hard-earned dollars and valuable time.  We are humbled by the trust you have placed in us and continually strive to be the organization this incredible community deserves.  That’s why we will be regularly answering your frequently asked questions to help you understand where your investment goes.  You are welcome to explore the following questions we frequently encounter about our work anytime on our website.  We would love to hear questions directly from you!  Share what you’ve always wanted to know about UWCK through commenting on our Facebook page, sending a message through our website, or emailing us directly at