Mission: United Way of the Bluegrass fights for the basic needs, education, and financial stability of every person in Central Kentucky. But change cannot happen along, and i ... (More)

United Way of the Bluegrass is a 501(c)(3) organization, with an IRS ruling year of 1955, and donations are tax-deductible.

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Contact Information

  http://www.uwbg.org/

 651 Perimeter Drive
Suite 510
Lexington KY 40517 

  859-233-4460


You are viewing this organization's new Charity Navigator profile page. To view the legacy version, click here.

Star Rating System by Charity Navigator


Charity Navigator evaluates a nonprofit organization’s financial health including measures of stability, efficiency and sustainability. We also track accountability and transparency policies to ensure the good governance and integrity of the organization.




Good

This charity's score is 80.90, earning it a 3-Star rating. Donors can "Give with Confidence" to this charity. 

This score is calculated from two sub-scores:

This score represents Form 990 data from 2019, the latest year published by the IRS.

View this organization’s historical ratings.


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Star Rated Report

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Program Expense

Program Expense Ratio

76.2%


The Program Expense Ratio is determined by Program Expenses divided by Total Expense (average of most recent three 990s).


This measure reflects the percent of its total expenses a charity spends on the programs and services it exists to deliver. Dividing a charity's average program expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Administrative Expenses

5.3%


As reported by charities on their IRS Form 990, this measure reflects what percent of its total budget a charity spends on overhead, administrative staff and associated costs, and organizational meetings. Dividing a charity's average administrative expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Fundraising Expenses

18.4%


This measure reflects what a charity spends to raise money. Fundraising expenses can include campaign printing, publicity, mailing, and staffing and costs incurred in soliciting donations, memberships, and grants. Dividing a charity's average fundraising expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Liabilities to Assets Ratio

18.8%


The Liabilities to Assets Ratio is determined by Total Liabilities divided by Total Assets (most recent 990).


Part of our goal in rating the financial performance of charities is to help donors assess the financial capacity and sustainability of a charity. As do organizations in other sectors, charities must be mindful of their management of total liabilites in relation to their total assets. This ratio is an indicator of an organization’s solvency and or long term sustainability. Dividing a charity's total liabilities by its total assets yields this percentage.


Source: IRS Form 990

Fundraising Efficiency

$0.22


The amount spent to raise $1 in charitable contributions. To calculate a charity's fundraising efficiency, we divide its average fundraising expenses by the average total contributions it receives. We calculate the charity's average expenses and average contributions over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Working Capital Ratio

0.44 years


Determines how long a charity could sustain its level of spending using its net available assets, or working capital, as reported on its most recently filed Form 990. We include in a charity's working capital unrestricted and temporarily restricted net assets, and exclude permanently restricted net assets. Dividing these net available assets in the most recent year by a charity's average total expenses, yields the working capital ratio. We calculate the charity's average total expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Program Expense Growth

-6.18%


We compute the average annual growth of program expenses using the following formula: [(Yn/Y0)(1/n)]-1, where Y0 is a charity's program expenses in the first year of the interval analyzed, Yn is the charity's program expenses in the most recent year, and n is the interval of years passed between Y0 and Yn.


Source: IRS Form 990

Governance


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990 that the organization has these governance practices in place.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990

Governance:
Independent Voting Board Members  ... (More)
No Material Diversion of Assets ... (More)

A diversion of assets – any unauthorized conversion or use of the organization's assets other than for the organization's authorized purposes, including but not limited to embezzlement or theft – can seriously call into question a charity's financial integrity. We check the charity's last two Forms 990 to see if the charity has reported any diversion of assets. If the charity does report a diversion, then we check to see if it complied with the Form 990 instructions by describing what happened and its corrective action. This metric will be assigned to one of the following categories:

  • Full Credit: There has been no diversion of assets within the last two years.

  • Partial Credit: There has been a diversion of assets within the last two years and the charity has used Schedule O on the Form 990 to explain: the nature of the diversion, the amount of money or property involved and the corrective action taken to address the matter. In this situation, we deduct 7 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
  • No Credit: There has been a diversion of assets within the last two years and the charity's explanation on Schedule O is either non-existent or not sufficient. In this case, we deduct 15 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
(Less)
Audited Financials Prepared by Independent Accountant ... (More)

Audited financial statements provide important information about financial accountability and accuracy. They should be prepared by an independent accountant with oversight from an audit committee. (It is not necessary that the audit committee be a separate committee. Often at smaller charities, it falls within the responsibilities of the finance committee or the executive committee.) The committee provides an important oversight layer between the management of the organization, which is responsible for the financial information reported, and the independent accountant, who reviews the financials and issues an opinion based on its findings. We check the charity's Form 990 reporting to see if it meets this criteria.

  • Full Credit: The charity's audited financials were prepared by an independent accountant with an audit oversight committee.

  • Partial Credit: The charity's audited financials were prepared by an independent accountant, but it did not have an audit oversight committee. In this case, we deduct 7 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
  • No Credit: The charity did not have its audited financials prepared by an independent accountant. In this case, we deduct 15 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
(Less)
Does Not Provide Loan(s) to or Receive Loan(s) From Related Parties ... (More)
Documents Board Meeting Minutes ... (More)
Distributes 990 to Board Before Filing ... (More)
Compensates Board ... (More)

Policies


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990, or for some metrics on the charity's website, that the organization has these policies in place.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990 and organization's website

Policies:
Conflict of Interest  ... (More)
Whistleblower ... (More)
Records Retention and Destruction ... (More)
CEO Compensation Process ... (More)
Donor Privacy ... (More)

Donors have expressed extreme concern about the use of their personal information by charities and the desire to have this information kept confidential. The exchanging and sale of lists for telemarketing and the mass distribution of "junk mail," among other things, can be minimized if the charity assures the privacy of its donors. Privacy policies are assigned to one of the following categories:

  • Yes: This charity has a written donor privacy policy published on its website, which states unambiguously that (1) it will not share or sell a donor's personal information with anyone else, nor send donor mailings on behalf of other organizations or (2) it will only share or sell personal information once the donor has given the charity specific permission to do so.

  • Opt-out: The charity has a written privacy policy published on its website which enables donors to tell the charity to remove their names and contact information from lists the charity shares or sells. How a donor can have themselves removed from a list differs from one charity to the next, but any and all opt-out policies require donors to take specific action to protect their privacy.
  • No: This charity either does not have a written donor privacy policy in place to protect their contributors' personal information, or the existing policy does not meet our criteria.

The privacy policy must be specific to donor information. A general website policy which references "visitor" or "user" personal information will not suffice. A policy that refers to donor information collected on the website is also not sufficient as the policy must be comprehensive and applicable to both online and offline donors. The existence of a privacy policy of any type does not prohibit the charity itself from contacting the donor for informational, educational, or solicitation purposes.

(Less)

Transparency


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990, or for some metrics on the charity's website, that the organization makes this information easily accessible.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990 and organization's website

Transparency:
CEO Salary Listed on 990 ... (More)
Board of Directors Listed on Website ... (More)
Key Staff Listed on Website ... (More)
Audited Financial Statements on Website ... (More)
Form 990 Available on Website ... (More)

Additional Information

Unscored

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Total Revenue and Expenses

Total Revenue and Expenses

This chart displays the trend of revenue and expenses over the past several years for this organization, as reported on their IRS Form 990.

Salary of Key Persons

Presented here are this organizations key compensated staff members as identified by our analysts. This compensation data includes salary, cash bonuses and expense accounts and is displayed exactly how it is reported to the IRS. The amounts do not include nontaxable benefits, deferred compensation, or other amounts not reported on W-2. In some cases, these amounts may include compensation from related organizations. Read the IRS policies for compensation reporting



William Farmer, President, CEO

$136,545 (3.11% of Total Expenses)


Source: IRS Form 990 (page 7), filing year 2020

Business Master File Data

Below are some key data points from the Exempt Organization IRS Business Master File (BMF) for this organization. Learn more about the BMF on the IRS website


Activities:

Gifts, grants, or loans to other organizations (BMF activity code: 602)


Foundation Status:

Organization which receives a substantial part of its support from a governmental unit or the general public   170(b)(1)(A)(vi) (BMF foundation code: 15)


Affiliation:

Independent - the organization is an independent organization or an independent auxiliary (i.e., not affiliated with a National, Regional, or Geographic grouping of organizations). (BMF affiliation code: 3)

Data Sources: IRS Forms 990

The Form 990 is a document that nonprofit organizations file with the IRS annually. We leverage finance and accountability data from it to form Encompass ratings. Click here to view this organization's Forms 990 on the IRS website (if any are available).

Pandemic Response

Due to the unprecedented nature of the pandemic, we give charities such as this one the opportunity to share the story of COVID's impact on them. Charities may submit their own pandemic responses through their nonprofit portal.


United Way of the Bluegrass reported being impacted by COVID-19 in the following ways:
  • Program Delivery

  • Fundraising Capacity

  • Revenue

  • Balance Sheet


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's operations financially:

COVID-19 affected fundraising overall and limited our ability to reach some companies who traditionally ran employee giving campaigns. We lost more than $100,000 in revenue due to cancelled fundraising events. We did apply and receive a PPP loan, as well as a local commerce grant and thus were able to employ and maintain a full staff which ensured continuity of operations and a nearly flat campaign result.


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's delivery of programs:

Some of our internal programs and funded partners were temporarily unable to operate or deliver services as intended due to local restrictions during the height of the pandemic, though overall we were able to maintain ample programming during this critical period. In addition, the launch of our new WayPoint initiative was delayed by one year due to local restrictions and conditions. In lieu of this launch, we extended grant funding by one additional year to those partners who were funded for the 2017-2020 grant period to help provide stability for partner nonprofits and ensure availability of critical health and human service programs at a time when more people than ever needed access to resources and assistance.


How this organization adapted to changing conditions caused by COVID-19:

UWBG moved swiftly to launch a Coronavirus Response Fund at the beginning of the pandemic, and in partnership with Blue Grass Community Foundation, raised over $1M which was quickly reinvested into our regional community to help support immediate and basic needs including food, transportation, prescription assistance, childcare and more. Despite the undertaking of this effort, 100% of dollars raised were granted to local partners on the frontlines of the pandemic. UWBG was able to improve technology components to allow employees to continue outreach and work virtually when conditions prevented in-person meetings. We converted more fundraising campaigns to an e-pledge platform due to many companies upholding a work from home model. We also hosted virtual fundraising and volunteer programs for the first time.


Innovations the organization intends to continue permanently after the pandemic:

The virtual programs we began offering were a success and we will continue to offer some virtual programming, fundraising and outreach moving forward. In addition, our staff can operate on a mobile and hybrid basis, which allowed us to move and downsize office space earlier this year which made our operations even more efficient.


Historical Ratings

Date PublishedForm 990 FYEOverall ScoreOverall Rating
Rating Version: 2.1
2/1/20212019 80.90
3/1/20202018 86.15
9/3/20192018 85.31

This organization received multiple star ratings within this fiscal year, due to an update to it's Accountability and Transparency data and/or the receipt of an amended Form 990.

12/1/20182017 79.59
2/1/20182016 77.42
12/1/20162015 81.70
6/1/20162014 83.41
Rating Version: 2.0
11/1/20152014 75.80
12/1/20142013 78.88
11/1/20132012 79.52
4/1/20122010 81.17
9/20/20112009 83.23
Rating Version: 1.0
4/1/20112009 73.28
2/1/20092007 82.11
2/1/20082006 76.95
2/1/20072005 82.62
2/1/20062004 80.32
4/1/20052003 74.89

...   Impact & Results


This score estimates the actual impact a nonprofit has on the lives of those it serves, and determines whether it is making good use of donor resources to achieve that impact.


Impact & Results Score

Not Currently Scored

United Way of the Bluegrass cannot currently be evaluated by our Encompass Rating Impact & Results methodology because either (A) it is eligible, but we have not yet received data; (B) we have not yet developed an algorithm to estimate its programmatic impact; (C) its programs are not direct services; or (D) it is not heavily reliant on contributions from individual donors.

Note: The absence of a score does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, it only indicates that we have not yet evaluated the organization.

Learn more about Impact & Results.

Do you work at United Way of the Bluegrass? Join the waitlist for an updated Impact & Results score.


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Additional Information

Unscored

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Largest Programs

Largest Programs



United Way of the Bluegrass reported its three largest programs on its FY 2020 Form 990 as:


$2,598,784

Spent in most recent FY

75%

Percent of program expenses


Supporting Community Programs: UWBG helps create opportunities for a better life for all. We make strategic investments in programs serving low-income and underserved Central Kentuckians in the areas  ... (More)


$271,292

Spent in most recent FY

7%

Percent of program expenses


United Way of the Bluegrass 2-1-1 connects people with resources that are available in their community via phone, chat, text messaging, mobile apps and the 2-1-1 website. 2-1-1 helps thousands of peop ... (More)


$449,958

Spent in most recent FY

13%

Percent of program expenses


The Central Kentucky Economic Empowerment Program (CKEEP) is a coalition, led by United Way of the Bluegrass that partners with the IRS to provide free tax preparation to low-income families, raise aw ... (More)


...   Leadership & Adaptability


This score provides an assessment of the organization's leadership capacity, strategic thinking and planning, and ability to innovate or respond to changes in constituent demand/need or other relevant social and economic conditions to achieve the organization's mission.


Leadership & Adaptability Score

100

out of 100

The score earned by United Way of the Bluegrass is a passing score.

Encompass Rating V4 provides an evaluation of the organization's Leadership & Adaptability through the nonprofit organization submitting a survey response directly to Charity Navigator.


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Leadership & Adaptability Report

100

of 100 points

Mission

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking through articulating the organization’s mission


UNITED WAY OF THE BLUEGRASS (UWBG) FIGHTS FOR THE BASIC NEEDS, EDUCATION AND FINANCIAL STABILITY OF EVERY PERSON IN CENTRAL KENTUCKY.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Vision

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking through articulating the organization’s vision.


UWBG's vision is to become Central Kentucky's philanthropic partner of choice. We want to strengthen the Bluegrass region by investing in resources at the neighborhood level, ensuring that everyone, despite their Zip Code is able to access equitable resources and long term support.


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Strategic Goals

The nonprofit organization presents evidence of strategic thinking and goal setting through sharing their most important strategic goals.


Goal One: Expand WayPoint Center initiative to include the opening of 4 to 5 additional centers by 2026.

Goal Type: Grow, expand, scale or increase access to the existing programs and services.


Goal Two: Focus on WayPoint, 211, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) as well as grant funding to collective impact partners to help achieve our vision and mission.

Goal Type: Focus on core programs to achieve mission and scale back on programs not seen as core.


Goal Three: Continue to build and uphold an expert and well trained staff equipped to lead and manage the organization efficiently and effectively. Improve infrastructure, technology and operations.

Goal Type: Invest in the capacity of our organization (financial, management, technical, etc.).


Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Leadership Development

The nonprofit provides evidence of investment in leadership development


Describe an investment in leadership

Our board has invested in leadership development for our president and CEO as well as other key management staff through professional mentoring services, local leadership programs, as well as DEI and continuing learning resources available for all staff through LinkedIn Learning.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Mobilizing for Mission

The nonprofit provides evidence of leadership through focusing externally and mobilizing resources for the mission.


This organization mobilizes for mission in the following ways:
  • Strategic Partnerships

  • Networks of Collective Impact Efforts

  • Thought Leadership

  • Raising Awareness

  • Community Building

  • Policy Advocacy

What are this organization’s external mobilizaton efforts?

Leadership and key staff engage with a number of strategic partners in the nonprofit, local and state government, business and education sectors. We operate our own Collective Impact Task Force, drawing local leaders and experts to discuss, share and collaborate around urgent needs and long term solutions. Key staff frequently present at local meetings and events to encourage collaboration, thought leadership and to elevate awareness of our mission and local community needs. UWBG also hosts various events to promote resources and make financial empowerment and education more accessible . Multiple staffers are engaged in other collective impact efforts and committee level work with local agencies, governments, school districts and more. UWBG operates a robust marketing & communications effort to help raise awareness through social media, print, digital, TV, radio and other mediums. UWBG has a Policy and Advocacy Committee working on a comprehensive advocacy and policy agenda.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

Story of Adaptability

The nonprofit has an opportunity to tell the story of how the organization adapted to tremendous external changes in the last year.


For 100 years, United Way of the Bluegrass (UWBG) has proudly served the Central Kentucky region. Community-driven support and contributions have allowed us to address our community’s most pressing needs during COVID-19 while developing strategic solutions for long-term success. Many critical issues remain and have worsened for countless families across the Bluegrass during the pandemic. That is why we fight for the basic needs, education, and financial stability of every person in Central Kentucky. After a century of trusted service, UWBG has proven that we still provide the resources, expertise, funding, and leadership to bring community-driven goals to life. We are always here, working to help more people succeed and thrive, and when disaster strikes, we step up. Under Timothy Johnson's two-year tenure and leadership, we have a renewed focus on staff development, management protocols, and community impact. This increased focus has sharpened the skillset of staff, and has increased their effectiveness, job satisfaction, and efficiency. When the pandemic struck, we were in a position to move quickly, adapt, and reallocate staff and resources to focus on response efforts which helped generate a notable level of support from local, regional and national partners. This effort had a tremendously positive impact for tens of thousands of Central Kentuckians in-need. While the past year has not been without its challenges, we have worked tirelessly to uphold our commitment to the community, maintain staff, seek additional funding sources, and build new strategic partnerships so we can help more of our neighbors recover and succeed. UWBG has fine tuned operations, reduced expenses in some areas and continued to provide the support that our programs, partners and community members need. We also launched a new initiative and opened our first three WayPoint Centers, which will increase access to support and services in underserved neighborhoods across the region.

Source: Nonprofit submitted responses

...   Culture & Community


This score provides an assessment of the organization's engagement with the constituents it serves, a practice we term Constituent Feedback. When organizations listen to constituents, they are able to better deliver on programs and meet the needs of stakeholders. A future version of this Beacon will also assess an organization's people operations and its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) metrics.


Culture & Community Score

100

out of 100

The score earned by United Way of the Bluegrass is a passing score.

Encompass Rating V4 provides an evaluation of an organization's Culture and Community by measuring its Constituent Feedback practices (see report below). Constituent Feedback data provides 100% of the basis for the initial evaluation of the Culture & Community Beacon.


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Culture & Community Report

100

of 100 points

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Constituent Feedback

Constituent Feedback

Full Credit


This organization reported that it is collecting feedback.


Here's how this organization is listening and learning from the people they serve:


How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Community meetings or town halls, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees


How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve


With whom does your organization share the feedback you got from the people you serve?

The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners


What challenges does your organization face in collecting feedback from the people you serve?

We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback


Briefly describe a recent change that your organization made in response to feedback from the people you serve.

We are in the process of redesigning our impact work, moving to a collective impact model. Based on partner, community and stakeholder feedback received through surveys and group discussions, we are developing a comprehensive plan to better serve our community.



Methodology


Charity Navigator believes nonprofit organizations that engage in inclusive practices, such as collecting feedback from the people and communities they serve, may be more effective. We've partnered with GuideStar by Candid to survey organizations about their feedback practices. Nonprofit organizations can fill out the How We Listen section of their Candid profile to receive a rating.


Charity Navigator awards full credit for this Beacon to every nonprofit that is eligible for an Encompass Rating that completes the survey, in recognition of their willingness to publicly share this information with the nonprofit and philanthropic communities. This data is not evaluated for quality at this time. Validation will be added in future iterations of this Beacon.

Analysis and Research


Like the overall Encompass Rating System, the Culture & Community Beacon is designed to evolve as metrics are developed and ready for integration. Our partnership with Feedback Labs and Guidestar by Candid, and other partners including Fund for Shared Insight, GlobalGiving, and Keystone Accountability, enables us to launch the first version of this beacon with Constituent Feedback information collected on Candid's site.


Feedback practices have been shown to support better Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion outcomes, an essential area of assessment that we intend to further expand and develop in the future. Feedback Labs has documented several studies which indicate that beyond achieving organizational goals, nonprofits that are attentive and responsive to concerns and ideas raised by beneficiaries establish stronger relationships with the people they serve, promote greater equity, and empower constituents in ways that can help to ensure better long-term outcomes. You can find resources to help nonprofits improve their feedback practices here.

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