Become a Member

In 2016, United Way of Bucks County moved to an open and inclusive funding process. This process, based on a “Collective Impact” model, allows more groups to work side by side with UW Bucks (and many partners) to improve life in Bucks County.

In 2017, UW Bucks opened Member Agency status to any qualifying nonprofit wishing to join.

United Way of Bucks County now has both funded partners and member agencies. All funded partners are member agencies, but not all member agencies receive funding.

Nonprofits interested in becoming Member Agencies in 2021 must submit all required documents by May 15, 2021.

Documents are reviewed United Way staff and volunteers. Nonprofits recommended for Member Agency status are voted on by United Way’s board of directors before the end of the year.

Funded Partner & Member Agencies must:

Provide human services based on documented needs and have a local presence.

Our member agencies provide human services that address a verified need or issue in Bucks County. United Way member agencies must have a visible presence in Bucks County.

Be incorporated, not-for-profit and IRS tax exempt.

All funded partners and member agencies must be not-for-profit organizations that have been declared tax exempt by the Internal Revenue Service and be able to affirm that status as needed.

Collaborate with Existing Systems

We believe that when organizations work together, outcomes are better for those we serve, and duplication of effort can be avoided. Therefore, Member Agencies must demonstrate a history of and willingness to work within existing human service systems and frameworks.

Be aligned with UW Bucks’ Priorities

We believe it is wise to focus on a few things and do them well, rather than attempt to be expert in all things.  Therefore, a Member Agency’s Core Services must be aligned with or complementary to United Way of Bucks County’s current investments and impact areas.

Affirm a non-discrimination policy and maintain a counter-terrorism policy.

Member agencies must have an up-to-date  (complying with all state and federal standards) non-discrimination policy.  United Way prohibits discrimination on the basis of age, race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, national origin, or any other classification or category. Member agencies must meet the federal guidelines for a counter-terrorism policy.

Maintain active, rotating volunteer leadership.

The Board of Directors or governing body of member agencies should consist of volunteers who participate in the policy making processes, strive to represent the diverse elements of the community, recruit new members on a planned basis, and meet at least quarterly.

Practice sound financial and program management.

United Way member agencies must demonstrate the ability to manage their programs and services in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.  Copies of an annual budget and audit or independent financial review must be provided annually.

Measure outcomes appropriately.

Member agencies must measure the outcomes of their agency and the programs they provide. They should report these statistics in an annual report, provided to United Way of Bucks County annually.

Other requirements

On occasion, UW Bucks may ask member agencies to send a guest speaker to a workplace campaign or provide an impactful story about someone who has been helped.

Currently, there is no fee to become a member, but member agencies may be asked to support United Way of Bucks County projects and programs (e.g. help with projects like Bucks Knocks Out Hunger, share social media posts, etc.).

United Way members enjoy many benefits including:

Access to resources. Some member agencies will receive funding through our community solutions teams (a significant part of our collective impact approach). Others may receive donor designated gifts through the United Way campaign or other campaigns (e.g. SECA or CFC).

Additional resources may be available for member agencies to distribute to clients and/or for agency use. Items that can be shared with clients may include: food, backpacks and school supplies, personal hygiene items, cleaning supplies, home goods, and other in-kind donations if and when available. Business and community partners looking to donate items through United Way will be connected with member agencies first. Items donated by businesses may include: office supplies, office fixtures and fittings, and office-related consumables.

Enhanced Credibility.  United Way of Bucks County stakeholders know that our member agencies have been reviewed by volunteers and financial experts. This external ‘stamp of approval’ means that an agency meets our standards of excellence.

Member agencies are invited to use a special United Way of Bucks County logo noting that they are an approved member. That can stand alone or link back to membership criteria on our web site.

In addition, member agencies may ask for a member of the UW team to go with them to speak to potential funders or donors. This endorsement – a third party technique – provides additional validation for the agency and their mission. We stand with, for, and behind our members.

Publicity and Awareness.  Member agencies are listed on the United Way website and in our annual report (a 70+ page magazine distributed to thousands of people in our community).  This helps build community awareness of each agency’s role and impact in our communities.

We also partner with member agencies to publicize and promote certain signature events throughout the year. In these cases, the logo of the member agency will appear on all marketing collateral.

Networking.  United Way of Bucks County member agencies are invited to attend all United Way events and meetings. We also invite member agencies to be our guests at campaign and community events if/when appropriate.

Special opportunities. Our member agencies are the first to benefit from special opportunities. For example, when business partners want to do a “Day of Caring,” we connect them with member agencies.

We may partner with member agencies to jointly apply for funding opportunities. In other cases, we may pass along funding opportunities that appear to be a good match with a member agency.

For more information about membership, contact Tim Philpot at