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New to ioby? It might be best to start with our general FAQ here.

Simply share your idea with the ioby team and we’ll confirm within 1-2 business days if your project is eligible for match funding. Then you can publish your ioby crowdfunding page and begin fundraising, with support from our experienced team of fundraising coaches. First-time fundraisers are welcome—we’re here to help!  While you fundraise, donations to your page will be instantly doubled so your fundraising work goes twice as far. 

Share your idea

 

Match Funding Basics

How does match funding on ioby work? When you fundraise on ioby with match funding, donations to your campaign will be doubled instantly, so you move toward your goal twice as fast. So if someone donates $25, your page will reflect a donation of $50!

How do I get approved for match funding? Simply share your project idea via the brief form here. You’ll need to create an ioby account, or sign into an existing ioby account, to do this; the process typically takes 5-10 minutes. After you share your project idea with us, you'll be contacted by a member of our team within 1-2 business days. They can confirm for you if the project idea you shared is eligible for matching funds, or ask questions if we need a little more information. If you’re fairly confident your project fits the eligibility guidelines (below), feel free to begin building a fundraising page immediately after sharing your idea, or you can wait to hear from us.

If I’m approved for match funding, am I guaranteed to receive a specific amount?  No, this is not a grant program. ioby matching funds will be distributed on a first-come basis to all participating campaigns, so that funding flows toward projects with the most urgent funding needs and active teams.Your team needs to raise a dollar to receive a dollar, and no amount of match funding is guaranteed in advance. If you begin a campaign, but then stop fundraising for several weeks, there is no guarantee that match funding will still be available later.

How do I know if match funding is still available for my project? When you share your project idea, our team will alert you in the case that match funds are running low and you may not be able to access the maximum amount; then you can decide if you would like to go forward with fundraising or not. We'll also alert you if matching funds begin to run low while you are fundraising with us. 

How long will the ioby NYC COVID-19 Just Recovery Match Fund be available?  This will depend on how many projects participate, and how much they raise. Funding will be distributed on a first-come basis as participating leaders fundraise. We anticipate that we'll likely have funding available until February 2021, though there is a chance funds will be used up sooner. 

 

Eligibility

Please note that you cannot participate in two ioby match opportunities at the same time, but if you exhaust one fund and are eligible for another one, then you may participate in an additional match fund opportunity.

Who is eligible to receive matching funds? Individual residents, informal groups of friends and neighbors, nonprofits, and community-based organizations are all invited to submit their project ideas.  

You do not need to be a formal nonprofit to access match funding and raise tax deductible donations on ioby. ioby is a 501c3 nonprofit and can serve as the fiscal sponsor for projects led by individuals or informal groups. ioby can also disburse funds to your local nonprofit fiscal sponsor if you prefer (including 501c3's, schools, municipalities, government agencies, and places of worship).

What if I have more than one eligible project idea? It’s best to pick one thing to crowdfund for at a time. If you’re trying to decide between several possible funding needs, keep in mind that crowdfunding works best for projects that are concrete and specific, where residents will be able to see the results or participate in the project they helped fund.

What kinds of NYC COVID-19 recovery projects are eligible for match funding? 

To access ioby's NYC COVID-19 Just Recovery Match Fund, the COVID19 response project that you are fundraising for must meet the eligibility guidelines below. Please note, this program provides project funding and cannot be used for general operating support for nonprofits. 

To access matching funds from this program, your project must:

1. Be focused on relief and recovery work to alleviate the impacts of COVID-19 for low-income, Black residents of NYC, who have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. This may include immediate financial relief for Black New Yorkers in need, addressing the health of low-income Black New Yorkers during the current crisis, or longer-term recovery projects addressing the impacts of the pandemic in Black communities. Please see eligible project examples below.

2. Be based in the five boroughs of New York City, and exclusively serve NYC residents. Priority is given to projects in lower-income neighborhoods.

3. Provide a public benefit or service that supports a group of community members, and not be for the benefit of a specific individual, family, or business.

4. Be specific and concrete. All ioby campaign pages must include a budget outlining how funds will be spent. Please note, this funding is for specific projects and initiatives, and cannot be used for general operating support for organizations. 

5. Be led by any of these three:

  • Local nonprofit (including 501c3s, schools, government agencies, or places of worship) with an organizational budget under $500,000

    • If led by a nonprofit organization, your organizational budget must be below $500,000. This funding is not intended for large established nonprofits with access to major institutional funding. Organizations with budgets over $500,000 should apply directly to the Robin Hood Foundation for funding.
  • Individual or informal group, with a local nonprofit fiscal sponsor to accept funds on their behalf.

  • Individual or informal group, for which ioby will serve as the nonprofit fiscal sponsor. More here
     

6. Be led by or co-created with residents of the neighborhoods that the project takes place in, and/or by people personally affected by the issues that the project addresses. Project leaders should have strong relationships with the communities they plan to serve. 

7. Be started by February 15th, 2021 at the latest. This funding is intended to fund urgent, immediate projects that are responding to current health and economic needs. You should have a plan to at least begin to use the funds you raise to bring your project to life within the upcoming few months.

8. Providing COVID-19 relief to Black New Yorkers in need through immediate financial assistance or fulfilling essential needs within NYC’s Black communities.

 

For example, you can access match funding for:

  • Mutual aid groups or local organizations meeting low-income resident’s immediate needs through providing care packages, food, child care support, back-to-school supplies, rent relief, direct cash assistance, etc.

  • Supporting a local charitable institution (soup kitchen, food bank, senior care organization, etc) with meeting increased demand due to COVID-19.

  • Community gardens supplying fresh food to low-income neighbors during COVID-19.

  • Addressing the educational impacts of COVID-19 within NYC’s Black, low-income communities:

    • Projects addressing the digital divide

    • Projects supporting families with home-schooling during COVID, or providing laptops or school-supplies to families in need.

  • Projects aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19 in NYC’s Black, low-income communities, or addressing existing public health issues that make those communities more at risk of COVID-19. For example:

    • Providing free COVID-19 testing, PPEs, sanitizing supplies, or educational materials about the pandemic.

    • Providing socially distant exercise programs, free blood pressure or diabetes screenings, nutrition programs, connecting residents to affordable healthcare options, etc.

  • Addressing the mental health impacts of the COVID-19 crisis on NYC’s Black, low- income communities. For example:

    • Fundraising for trauma recovery work or mental health services to address the collective trauma of the pandemic’s toll.

  • Projects aimed at providing employment assistance or workforce development training in NYC’s Black, low-income communities. For example:

    • A job training, workforce development, or community development program aimed at getting residents back to work and on their feet financially.
       

Please note: All donations to all projects on ioby are fully tax-deductible. 
You do not need to be a formal nonprofit to access match funding and raise tax deductible donations on ioby. ioby is a 501c3 nonprofit and can serve as the fiscal sponsor for projects led by individuals or informal groups. ioby can also disburse funds to your local nonprofit fiscal sponsor if you prefer (including 501c3's, schools, municipalities, government agencies, and places of worship).

 

Ineligible Project Examples:

Because all donations on ioby are tax-deductible, we cannot support campaigns that benefit one specific individual, family, or business, such as:

1. Gap funding for your small business.
2. Covering a specific individual’s loss of income or medical expenses. 

 

Please feel free to contact us at Matches@ioby.org to discuss your project idea. We are happy to recommend another crowdfunding platform if it’s not a fit for ioby.

 

Match Caps and Budget Questions

Does it cost anything to fundraise on ioby? ioby's standard platform and fiscal sponsorship fees are some of the lowest around, but we are waiving them for COVID-19 response projects. For projects participating in the ioby NYC COVID-19 Just Recovery Match Fund, the only cost is the 3% processing fee we pass on to our secure third-party processor. This 3% is retained from the total you raise (including any match funding applied) at the end of your campaign, nothing is paid up front. ioby's fiscal sponsorship service is free for COVID-19 response projects.

How much match funding can I receive on my campaign? $8,000 is the maximum amount that can be applied to any campaign in the ioby NYC COVID-19 Just Recovery Match Fund. This cap helps ensure that multiple projects will have access to funding.

What if my project is small and I don't need $8,000? Or what if I don't think I can raise that much?  That's totally fine! This program is appropriate for small-scale, grassroots projects and ioby has lots of experience supporting smaller campaigns. You are not required to try to use the full $8,000 in match funding.

Should the goal I set on my fundraising page include the amount of match funding I hope to receive? Yes. For example, if you need $10,000 to implement your project, your public goal on your page would be $10,000—you would only need to fundraise $5,000 of that goal, which would be doubled as you fundraise.

Shouldn't I set a really big goal and hope for the best? You will only receive match funding equivalent to what you raise, so we encourage you to aim for an amount of funding that fits your team’s fundraising capacity and immediate budget needs. Also, it makes crowdfunding more difficult to set a larger goal than you have a plan to reach, because donors are less likely to give to campaigns that don't look likely to meet their goal. Our webinars, campaign planning tools, and your ioby Leader Success Strategist can all help you set a goal that fits your team size and fundraising plan.

Does match funding apply to any donation? Match funding is meant to make it easier for you to reach out to your networks broadly to ask for donations, and not meant for doubling just one or two large gifts. For that reason, we’ll only be matching up to the first $1,000 of any single donation.

Does ioby accept checks and can they be matched?  Yes. It's not standard practice, but if you have a donor who prefers to give by check instead of credit card, they can send their check to ioby to be applied to your campaign. ioby's donation processing fee of 3% also applies to check donations, and check donations can be matched. We won’t be able to match a check donation until we receive and process the check, whereas online donations are matched instantly.

What if I use up all the match funding I was originally planning for, but want to keep fundraising? Great! With ioby’s flexible finish policy you can always raise your goal mid-campaign if needed. If you hit the $8,000 match cap, you are also welcome to keep fundraising additional unmatched dollars.

What happens if I don’t meet my goal? Our trainings and one-on-one support are intended to give you and your team the best shot as success. However, if you fall short of your goal, you'll still keep anything you raised and match funding you've earned. When you close your campaign, your Leader Success Strategist will ask you to adjust the budget on your page to show how you’ll use the smaller amount of funds toward your project.

Here are some examples of possible budget scenarios:

Your original goal: $16,000
You raise: $8,000
Match funding added: $8,000
Total disbursed at end of campaign: $16,000*

Your original goal: $6,000
You raise: $2,000
Match funding added: $2,000
Total disbursed at end of campaign: $4,000*
 

Your original goal: $8,000
You raise: $5,000
Match funding added: $5,000
Total disbursed at end of campaign: $10,000*
 

Your original goal: $20,000
You raise: $12,000
Match funding added: $8,000
Total disbursed at end of campaign: $20,000*

Your page will continue to accept donations after your goal is met and you can raise your campaign goal at any time during your campaign. When $8,000 in match funding has been applied to your page, the match will automatically shut off. At that point, donations will no longer be matched but you are always welcome to continue fundraising additional unmatched dollars.

*Minus ioby fees.
 

Reporting and Receiving Your Funds

When will I receive my match funding? Donations to your ioby campaign page will be doubled instantly as people donate to your page. When you decide to close your campaign, you’ll receive the total you raised plus match funding as one lump sum, via check or e-payment. The 3% fee for our secure payment processor will be retained from that total. We will ask you to electronically sign a simple project agreement or fiscal sponsorship agreement before sending your payment. 

What reporting is required if I participate? All ioby project leaders are asked to complete an online survey that we'll ask you to fill it out at the point that you close your campaign and request your funds. It should take about 10 minutes to fill out, and helps us consistently improve our crowdfunding coaching services. 

We may also follow up with you after you've implemented your project to ask you to share any great photos that we may use in public reports or blog posts to help share the power of your work and inspire other leaders.

Other Questions?

Please feel free to contact us at Matches@ioby.org to discuss your project idea. We are happy to recommend another crowdfunding platform if it’s not a fit for ioby.