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Re: AMSAT & Combined Federal Campaign

AMSAT is eligible to apply for CFC funding.  What would AMSAT gain?  Access 
to over 10 million US Federal Government and US Military employees.  Once a 
year, the CFC campaign solicits donations from these employees by giving 
seminars, demonstrations and short presentations at their place of work.  NO 
OTHER organizations are permitted to enter a Federal workplace or military 
installation to solicit - ONLY CFC members, and only once a year (around 

The CFC campaign has local coordinators which are volunteers, that handle 
setting up the presentations.  USUALLY this consists of a 45-60 minute 
presentation which includes a 10-12 minute film on CFC member organizations 
and how CFC works.  They also publish a book that is handed out to all 
employees with all approved organizations and a brief description of the 
organizations purpose, plus lists some details like how much money is spent 
on administration and fundraising.  (some people hate giving to wasteful 

An employee can contribute cash or use an allotment directly from their pay 
account.  They can give anywhere from $1 up, and donations can be allocated 
to several different organizations, each with a specific donation amount.

The cool part is when someone choices to NOT specify any organization.  That 
money is then divided up among CFC member organizations.  I don't have the 
details on how much, but obviously the largest ones like the Red Cross and 
United Way get larger portions.  This pretty much guarantees that AMSAT will 
get at least a small slice of the pie even if no one selects them 
specifically (yeah, like THAT could happen!)  You can also elect to keep your 
donations with your local geographic area.

It's pretty easy.  There's a 5-page application at the following web site  
http://www.opm.gov/cfc/html/2001appl.htm.  It's mostly checking off boxes 
that certify you meet the criteria.  For instance, to qualify as a "National" 
organization you must provide services in at least 15 states or a foreign 
country - looks like AMSAT qualifies!  Organizations must provide health and 
welfare services - since AMSAT is an educational charter I think this covers 
it, as well as our emergency communications services.

We will need to include a copy of the Charter and IRS non-profit 
certification (form 990?), plus the executive officers will have to sign the 

DEADLINE to apply for the 2002 season is JAN 31st.

I'm sure a few folks might want to read the CFC regulations to make sure this 
we dot all the T's and cross all our I's.  The CFC regs are at:

Just as a personal note.  Several years ago CFC got a bad rap due to some 
hanky panky in the United Way (some weasel was scamming money and getting 
paid a huge salary as one of their CEO's).  So a lot of folks started taking 
a very close look at the percentages of money various organizations spend on 
admin, how much they pay their officers and PR staff, etc.  It is generally 
considered a good thing to show that your organization spends less than 25% 
overhead on non-service activities.  AMSAT would need to have this info 
available and be willing to disclose it.  This info is included in the 
booklet that is handed out every year and is a big deal to some people.

I think this can be a very good thing and has the potential to raise 
substantial funds.  Maybe even consider including some AMSAT demonstrations 
at various places like other organizations do - certainly would be a lot more 
interesting than the same old United Way stuff!  We should be ready with some 
literature, maybe even see if we could get a few seconds of video in the 
yearly CFC movie.

Ray - WB3ABN

P.S. I know some sharp cookie will look me up and discover that I haven't yet 
joined AMSAT.  True!  I just signed on to this -bb a few months ago and am 
deciding what I want to accomplish in the way of satellites. But I just 
retired from my first career and am currently unemployed, so spending money 
for anything other than bills and food is currently on hold.  I hope to start 
a new career very soon and my check will be in the mail.

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