Changes are happening with Work for Art

Changes to the Work for Art program

Over the past 18 months, the Work for Art team has been deeply evaluating the 12- year- old program with an end goal of transforming our work into something that will yield greater impact and scalability. At the end of August, we’ll retire the Work for Art brand, and run our workplace giving as a part of Arts Advocacy at RACC. This is a nod to our growing collaborative work with RACC’s Grants and Communications teams over the past year. Although the City of Portland eliminated its annual $200,000 matching challenge contribution to the campaign, we view this as a prime opportunity to build and promote a stronger public-private movement – in partnership with you – to advocate for our arts and culture community in more meaningful ways. Read more about the changes we’re making to our workplace giving program here.

RACC’s grants program is implementing changes alongside with these Work for Art changes that will affect GOS organizations. Click here to see those changes.

What’s changing?

  • RACC will continue its workplace giving program. The Work for Art brand will retire on 8/31/2018.
  • The Work for Art team will be part of Arts Advocacy at RACC. This team will collaborate with RACC Grants and Communications staff to build and promote a public-private movement in support of our region’s arts and culture ecosystem.
  • Donors through RACC’s workplace giving program will have the option to contribute to the Arts Impact Fund, which replaces the Arts Community Fund and the Arts Education Fund.
  • Fall 2018 will be the final separate allocation of workplace giving donations to GOS groups. Beginning FY19-20, workplace giving donations will no longer be a separate allocation from the amount that RACC distributes as grant awards. RACC will collect donations to the Arts Impact Fund over a full campaign/fiscal year, then disburse these funds to the spectrum of RACC grant programs that support arts organizations, including General Operating Support and Project Grant awards.
  • As a part of City Council’s approval of 5% reductions across bureaus, beginning FY18-19, RACC will no longer receive the $200,000 donor match incentive from the City of Portland.

What’s staying?

  • Donors will still be able to designate a portion or all of their gift through RACC’s workplace giving program to any 501(c)(3) arts organization based in Clackamas, Multnomah, or Washington County. RACC will continue to distribute designated gifts quarterly.
  • Donors who contribute $60+ annually will continue to receive The Arts Card.

We’re also making changes to our grants program that will affect GOS organizations. Please click here to read the changes.

Why is it changing?

The Work for Art team spent the last 18 months deeply evaluating the 12 year old program with an end goal of transforming our work into something that will result in greater impact and scalability.

Retiring the Work for Art brand empowers our Arts Advocacy, Grants, Community Engagement, and Communications teams to unite and strengthen RACC’s role in supporting our arts and culture ecosystem.

Workplace giving as a whole is changing due to technological advancements and generational shifts. We have already begun our work to attune to these changes, streamline our processes, and expand our capacity to grow. Our current projects include

  • a new pledge site that immediately sends donors acknowledgement and tax receipt information
  • an online artist directory that directly connects partner companies with arts opportunities and experiences
  • phased progress toward a digital Arts Card to enhance user experience
  • strategic and collaborative work with our combined campaign colleagues at Black United Fund, Children’s Trust Fund, EarthShare, Habitat for Humanity, and United Way of the Columbia-Willamette, to advance our relevancy and marketability in the business community.

We understand RACC can do more to provide value and resources beyond money to help you better serve your communities. Working with you, we aim to demonstrate how crucial arts and culture organizations are to the livability of our communities.

In addition to changes to the Work for Art Program, we’re making changes to our grants program that will affect GOS organizations. Please click here to read why these changes are happening.



How are Fall 2018 workplace giving allocations looking?
Although we have yet to complete reconciliation of FY17-18 donations, we estimate that the campaign total decreased by about 24% from FY16-17. Our Fall and Spring campaigns were generally down across the board. While it fostered a positive buzz, we retired the Battle of the Bands in 2018 as we realized the amount of money and awareness raised did not substantiate the staff time and resources used to produce the event. We are eager to partner with you to advocate for our arts and culture community in more meaningful ways.

How about beyond Fiscal Year 18-19?
The combination of several internal changes and external factors (detailed above in “Why is it Changing?”) makes it challenging for us to accurately project our future workplace giving campaign totals at this time. We believe that the new direction we are taking will contribute to the growth of our workplace giving and arts advocacy efforts. We also believe it will open the door to other ways that we can add value and measure our success – beyond a campaign total. We will be testing, measuring, and evaluating new strategies as we partner with you to build a public-private movement in support of arts and culture.

Why is the Arts Education Fund going away?
Donors will continue to have the ability to support arts education under the new model. We decided to channel donations into one fund that benefits a wide variety of arts and culture organizations, which include those that provide substantial arts education programming. The Arts Education Fund constituted a small percentage of our annual campaign totals. We believe that this is largely due to the functional limitations of donor pledge portals that many of our partner companies use. For example, our two largest campaigns use an online giving platform that does not provide donors a straight forward way to select from multiple funds under one organization.

Should my organization remove Work for Art recognition?
Please remove all Work for Art logos and related text. However, please continue to recognize RACC in accordance with your current GOS acknowledgement requirements.  We understand you may have already printed some materials with Work for Art recognition for your upcoming season – that’s ok! Our new printed and online materials will clearly demonstrate the sunset of the Work for Art brand, and we will have online re-directs in place. We are thinking about how to best include credit to our workplace donors and partner companies through your RACC recognition, and we will update you on any changes prior to FY19-20 grant allocations.

What about the Work for Art pens?
Perhaps the time has finally come to get some cool RACC branded pens.

We’re making changes to our grants program that will affect GOS organizations. Click here to get your frequently asked questions answered.

Who to contact with more questions:

Alison Bailey, Business Partnership Manager | | 503.823.5424