Welcome to the She's the First Campus Portal FAQs - a place with answers to anything you could possibly wonder about governing your chapter. Use the links below to find answers to all of the STF Frequently Asked Questions.
- What does it mean to be a 501(c)3 organization?
- So is my chapter a 501(c)3 organization?
- What is the EIN (Employer Identification Number) of She's the First?
- What does She’s the First’s “100% model” mean?
- How do we donate the money that we raise to She’s the First?
- What do we do if a donor to our chapter requests a tax receipt?
- What is the mailing address for She's the First?
- What should our chapter constitution, executive board, and meetings look like?
- How do we pay for chapter expenses?
- Are chapters allowed to charge dues?
- Are we required to have a bank account for our chapter?
- When should my chapter elect new officers?
- How do we expand our chapter with new members?
- How much does it cost to provide a scholarship to a girl through STF?
- #BakeAChange Cupcake Campaign FAQ
- #SweatForSTF Fitness Fundraising FAQ
- Can my chapter use the Charity Miles app to raise money for a Scholar?
- When does She’s the First match Scholars with Campus Chapters?
- What is the best way to create a social media presence as a chapter?
- What are the official colors of She's the First?
- Can my chapter use the She's the First logo on our social media accounts and merchandise?
- Can my chapter use photos of the STF Scholars in our promotional materials?
- Can we write to the She’s the First Scholars?
- Can my chapter visit a She’s the First partner school?
- Can I start a project at a partner school, make a documentary about She’s the First, or profile an STF scholar?
She’s the First, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. 501(c)3 organizations are legally recognized and regulated by the government. This means that all donations are tax exempt – something that may help you solicit donations from businesses or people writing large checks. Our EIN number for tax purposes is 65-1321437 and the official letter from the IRS documenting this may be found here. Keep it handy!
It is very important to understand that according to the IRS, your campus chapter is not a 501(c)3 organization. Legally, She’s the First Campus Chapters are independent of and function as donors to the main national STF organization. In general, this should not impact how your chapter functions. From time to time, you may encounter a donor that requests a tax receipt for their donation. All official tax receipts must be provided by the main office, as your chapter is not a legally recognized nonprofit organization.
Every penny donated to She’s the First for girls’ scholarships will go directly toward that purpose; we have separate bank accounts for that reason. We raise separate funds for U.S. Programs and Operations (like the campus program!).
There are three options for how you donate your money:
1. Mail a Check: Convert all cash from fundraising events into one check representing the lump sum total to be donated. Checks can be written from an organization/chapter account, or from a student or adviser's personal bank account. Print and complete the donation form to include with your check and mail to:
She’s the First
Attn: Katie Riley
PO Box 20483
Columbus Circle Station
New York, NY 10023
It is very important that you note the name of your chapter and the country/school you would like your funds to be donated to on this form. Otherwise, your chapter may not get credit and/or we will allocate it according to our own discretion. All checks received from your chapter will be added as manual donations to your chapter’s total on the fundraising leaderboard. You will receive an email notification when your check has been received by the office. If you have not yet received an email notification, then we don’t have your check yet!
2. Donate Online: Make a donation online directly to your chapter's page at campus.shesthefirst.org. Can't find your page? Click on the Chapter Directory link in the right sidebar. Please note that online donations will include a processing fee.
3. Venmo: Transfer your funds via Venmo (username: shesthefirst) with your chapter name fully spelled out in the memo field (please don’t abbreviate).
If a donor to your chapter requests a tax receipt, please follow this procedure:
Encourage the donor to make their donation directly to the STF website in honor of your chapter - they’ll receive an automatic tax receipt via email, and we'll credit their donation towards your total on the Leaderboard.
If your donor would prefer to write a check, verify that the amount is over $250.00. The IRS does not require documentation for donations under $250.00
Have the donor write their check to “She’s the First” without your chapter’s name. They should write your school/chapter name in the memo field.
Download the donation form and include the donor’s details in the “Donor Information” section on page 1. On page 2, include your school/chapter name under “Acknowledgement Information”. The donor will receive a tax receipt from our office, and their check will be applied to your chapter’s fundraising total.
The PO Box address (for mailing donations, important documents, etc) is:
PO Box 20483
Columbus Circle Station
New York, NY 10023
The office address for She's the First is:
590 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10011
Check out the She’s the First document templates here for examples that will help your chapter run smoothly. You can find samples of a chapter constitution, officer positions, a and sample chapter meeting agenda.
As a chapter leader, we encourage you to structure your meetings and activities in whatever way makes the most sense for your campus community. Chapter size, meeting frequency, executive board structure, etc. vary greatly from school to school. Choose the system that works best for you!
First, check with your school to see if they provide funding for campus organizations and clubs.
Members and officers should not feel obligated to cover out-of-pocket costs related to chapter events, so proceeds from events may be used to reimburse individuals for these costs relating to the event. All other profits will be donated to She’s the First. If you plan to reimburse members using some of the event funds, be sure to say “100% of profits” will support girls’ education in low-income countries rather than “100% of proceeds.”
Yes, but chapter dues may not exceed $20 per person per semester, and you should never exclude a student who cannot afford to pay dues. Your school likely has funds already set aside for student programming or clubs, so be sure to apply for a budget if you are able to.
No, you are not required to have a bank account for your chapter.
If you would like to open a bank account, please keep the following details in mind:
You must include your school/chapter’s name in the account name. Do not open an account under the name “She’s the First” or “She’s the First, Inc.” without your school or chapter name. You may not use the national EIN number (65-1321437) to open a bank account for your chapter. This number applies to the national organization only.
Check with your school’s office first to see if they offer club banking before going to a standard local or national bank. If the school does not offer banking, ask if they can provide your chapter an EIN number to use at a private bank.
- Remember that checks/donations from your chapter can be sent from an individual and still count towards your chapter. Simply deposit all cash/donations into one person’s account and have that individual write a check to She’s the First with your chapter information in the memo field of the check. Include the donation form to guarantee that your chapter is credited appropriately.
While there is no specific requirement for when new officers are selected, we recommend creating your officer terms on a calendar year (January-December) rather than a school year (August-June). Using the calendar year system, officers will be elected in November or December of each year. The executive board will conduct an officer transition in December or early January, and the new officer terms will officially begin in January of each year. This allows outgoing officers (often seniors) to continue to serve as a resource to new officers for their first few months before leaving campus.
Whether you’ve just established your chapter or you’ve been around for years, recruiting new members should always be a priority for your campus chapter. Click here for information about how to find new members, keep people engaged, and have fun as a chapter.
Here are a few of our top tips:
Finding New Members
Think about where you would look if you wanted a club to join -- make sure your chapter is represented in your school’s club fair, on the student activities website, or posted on the campus bulletin board. Make it easy for members to find you, and you won’t even have to go looking for them!
Give Them a Warm Welcome
When someone new joins your chapter, make sure they know that their time is appreciated. Designate one or two officers to greet all newcomers as they arrive to your meetings and collect their contact information -- you never want someone to arrive at their first meeting, excited to get involved, only to leave unacknowledged by the other members of the group. While it can be tempting to have your executive board clustered together and talking amongst themselves before a meeting begins, make sure you use this time wisely to connect with other members.
When you’re stressing about members, remember Chapter Mentor Kara’s advice:
"Quality over Quantity! Don't be so concerned with recruiting a ton of members right away. Be patient and share your passion through personal conversations. Concentrate on igniting that passion in others, but don't get too caught up in hearing "No". Not everyone is going want to drop everything and join you, but that's okay because when you find the ones who do you will do amazing things together!”
Scholarship levels begin at $400, $1000, and $1400 across all 12 partner schools; however, all Campus Chapters will be matched for every $400 raised. This means that in some cases, STF Scholars will be supported by 2-3 campus chapters. If you already support a Scholar, the annual renewal cost of her scholarship is $400.
The tie-dye cupcake bake-off is a fundraising campaign that runs annually from October 11-November 1.
Is my chapter required to participate in #BakeAChange?
We welcome all chapters to join the #BakeAChange campaign, our largest annual grassroots fundraiser, but it is not a strict requirement for your chapter. If you choose not to participate in this campaign, you'll need to plan an alternative fundraiser or event sometime during the fall semester.
How do we make tie-dye cupcakes? How do we advertise our sale?
Visit the #BakeAChange website here for all of your bake sale resources. There’s a simple recipe for how to make tie-dye cupcakes and different downloads to help you spread the word about your bake sale.
Are we only allowed to bake cupcakes?
Nope! To qualify for the #BakeAChange campaign, your fundraiser only needs 3 key ingredients:
- a spoonful of awareness about She’s the First and girls’ education
- a pinch of social media love with the #BakeAChange hashtag
- a baking time of October 11 - November 1!
If your chapter’s fundraiser fits these guidelines, then it fits in the campaign.
What do I do if my school won’t let me sell homemade goods?
There are many alternatives to homemade goods. Contact your school’s catering company and see if they will donate cupcakes for you to sell instead, or try hosting a bake sale off campus at an office or community center. Or, ask a local bakery to donate cupcakes for you to sell in exchange for advertising their offerings on your campus. For alternative #BakeAChange campaign ideas, check out our cupcake fundraising guide.
What is #SweatForSTF?
#SweatforSTF is a community of people who use fitness to fundraise for She's the First scholarships. There is no official start/end date for this campaign, but participants are typically most active March-June and around the NYC Marathon in November. Visit the #SweatForSTF campaign site here to see who is involved. Or, click here to access the #SweatforSTF toolkit, with donation email templates and additional resources.
Can I personally fundraise through #SweatForSTF?
Yes! You can run a race and raise funds for She’s the First at the same time! Simply sign up for a race, personalize your fundraising page at crowdrise.com/sweatforstf, set a fundraising goal, and contact your family and friends for donations! On race day, wear colorful gear or an STF t-shirt and take plenty of pictures to share with STF and your donors.
How can my campus chapter participate?
Your chapter can get involved in any number of ways, like challenging members to create personal fundraising goals, coordinating a 5K race, or hosting a fitness class on campus.
Charity Miles is a free iPhone and Android app that enables people to earn corporate sponsorships for charity while walking, running or biking. We encourage your chapter to use the app for teambuilding and personal fitness, however, donations made through Charity Miles will not count towards your chapter's total fundraising amount/Scholar matching. Due to the way that Charity Miles distributes funds to their nonprofit partners, donations are received in a lump sum and cannot be separated by chapter or individual.
Campus Chapter Scholar matching will take place at specific dates throughout the year, and your Chapter Mentor will notify you of these dates and deadlines. Any donations received after the specified date will be held until the next matching period.
September 1 - December 31, 2016
Matching process will begin January 2017. Your chapter will receive information about the Scholar(s) you support early in the spring semester, exact date depending on the partner school/country. Please allow up to 6 weeks for notification of your Scholar match.
January 1 - May 31, 2017
Matching process will begin in June 2017. Your chapter will receive information about the Scholar(s) you support early in summer 2017, exact date depending on the partner school/country.
Please note that you do not choose a specific Scholar to support unless you are renewing the annual scholarship for a Scholar you have already been matched with.
She's the First was born on social media, and we fully believe in its ability to advance your chapter's mission and goals. Start by following the main STF accounts and other chapters on all social media platforms. You can use your accounts to share information about upcoming meetings, advertise your fundraisers, and promote relevant articles.
For a more in-depth look at creating a successful social media strategy, check out our guide here.
As of September 2016, the official She's the First colors are teal, coral, and yellow. Use these primary colors along with navy and gray in your chapter's graphics and advertisements. Match our official colors using the following color codes:
- Coral: F85756
- Teal: 28CAC8
- Yellow: FDE545
- Navy: 0B3059
- Gray: 3C4F64
Your chapter should always use your personalized school logo, not the main STF logo, on your social media accounts and merchandise. New logos will be available for all active chapters in September 2016.
To find pictures of the STF Scholars, visit our Flickr page here. You can also use the pictures and information about the Scholar you sponsor that is emailed to you throughout the year. Remember to always use the Scholar's name and give credit to the photographer listed in the photo's caption.
We suggest using letter writing as an opportunity to engage your chapter members in thoughtful discussions or team-building activities. You'll receive an email inviting your chapter to sign up to write letters twice per year (fall and spring semesters) and you can sign up to write as many letters as you'd like! Once you've signed up, you'll receive letters from the Scholars you've been assigned and instructions for replying. Please note that letters to our Scholars in Guatemala and Peru should be written in Spanish.
She’s the First’s policy is that students apply through our partners' existing programs for anything related to volunteering with them. Here a few resources along those lines that you can check out:
- Selamta Family Project in Ethiopia: http://www.selamtafamilyproject.org/take-a-trip/
- Arlington Academy of Hope in Uganda: http://aahuganda.org/take-action/volunteer/
- Shanti Bhavan School in India: http://www.shantibhavanonline.org/volunteer/
Please note that your affiliation with She’s the First does not guarantee you a spot with one of our partner programs, and your participation in these programs is that of an individual, not a She's the First representative.
Can I start a project at a partner school, make a documentary about She’s the First, or profile an STF scholar?
She the First appreciates your interest and support of our mission. At this time, we are unable to assist with projects outside of our current commitments. We encourage you to apply directly through the respective official channels to the programs and projects that interest you.