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The deadline to request off-campus fundraising approval for the 2024-2025 academic year has been extended to Monday, June 17, 2024.

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Benefit (Charity) Fundraising

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Only VSOs that have explicit philanthropic missions as a part of their VSO constitutions are allowed to collect contributions and donate them to charity. 

All other VSOs cannot collect funds but rather direct donations directly to the named charity due to tax and income implications.

Benefit fundraisers are events sponsored in the name of Stanford proper or on Stanford land whose proceeds will be charitably donated to a domestic-based 501(c)3 non-profit organization. University departments or individuals cannot sponsor such events in the name of Stanford.

Stanford-recognized student volunteer organizations will be referred to as “VSOs” for brevity.

OSE Approval Requirement

All charitable fundraising events or initiatives require pre-approval from the Office of Student Engagement before any planning commitments are made, including but not limited to:

  • Booking Speakers
  • Outreach to Sponsors
  • Advertising/Marketing Event

OSE Application Steps

  1. Written verification from the desired beneficiary.
  2. Detailed budget with realistic income and expense projections
    1. Proof that the event will generate a minimum of a 10% of net proceeds for the charity.
    2. Include quotes of venue and mandated event services

Event Requirements

Benefit fundraising events must:

  1. Align with Stanford University’s societal mission 
  2. Have a clear link between the VSO’s constitutional mission, the off-campus charity, and the planned event
  3. Be fully student-led and sponsored by a VSO in good standing. This includes the VSO managing all funds collection, reimbursements, and final accounting.
  4. Proof of VSO independence from off-campus entities. 
  5. Primarily target the Stanford community
  6. Occur during the standard academic year (Fall, Winter, and Spring quarters)
  7. Be centered on a planned event or activity and not simply a sale of goods.
    1. Note: Special arrangements for crisis response including major natural disasters can be made with prior consultation with OSE staff.

Beneficiary (Charity) Guidelines

The proposed beneficiary (charity) must:

  1. Have an active US taxpayer ID number
  2. Be registered as a 501(c) 3 organization 
  3. Demonstrate reasonable responsible stewardship, including a minimum of three consecutive years of effective philanthropy. 
  4. Be verified through Guidestar. 
    1. Note on How-To: Create a free account and access a charity's annual tax statements.

Financial Accounting Requirements

All financial transactions must be handled through the VSO’s ASSU accounts via GrantEd. The quality of stewardship of an event will impact the approval of future ones.

All funds generated must be 

  1. Collected through an ASSU-generated ticking platform or pre-approved collection method.
  2. Deposited via sponsoring VSO’s ASSU account 
  3. Promptly paid to the charity via invoice payment on GrantEd within 4-6 weeks of event completion

Accounting mandates:

  1. Good cash handling procedures including regular, if not daily, deposits of income
  2. All accounting is centralized and there is at least one financial lead
  3. Detailed accounting of funds
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