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Living and Giving:

Stories And Causes You Care About

Fee Free Giving from Encast

By Leo Ramirez Posted on June 2, 2016

by Leo Ramirez, Jr., Encast CEO and co-founder

Encast is bringing revolutionary new approaches to charitable giving. As a for-profit social venture, revolutionizing the social sector without significant revenues is impossible. In that respect, we are like every business and are bound to provide profits, if at all possible, to our investors and shareholders. We believe in having a double bottom line, which is a measureable social impact and a profit.

We also are committed to fee free charitable transactions for donors using Encast. We are doing everything we can to ensure that every penny of money given to charity ends up in the hands of good causes doing great work. The ugly truth about the world of giving is that many non-profits lose money to bank and credit card transaction fees. We have developed a methodology for paying those unavoidable fees without charging donors or non-profits and we think it will, eventually, transform giving.

Encast intends to be the most efficient way to get money into the hands of the people doing the charitable work. But we also want to be the place to go to easily track volunteer hours for individuals and nonprofits. Donors can see both sides of the impact they’re making for the causes they love. The good news is this, in no way, is related to how Encast makes money because there acts of generosity don't incur fees. We are leaving that status quo approach, which everyone else employs, behind us because we have found a better revenue generation strategy.

This means that we are more attractive to companies with corporate social responsibility in their DNA. Those are the businesses that end up enrolling with Encast. Like us, they also want a double bottom line and make a difference in the world. These businesses want to be remarkable to their shareholders and their customers and their employees because they are giving back to their communities and benefiting our planet. Executives at these kinds of companies view it as a privilege having a program that allows employees to engage in charitable giving anew makes that individual worker happier.

This, by definition, isn’t just a fundraising campaign started by the company for their favorite causes: they are hand-selected by each employee. By empowering the employee to make that choice, they end up bonding with their employer over a mutual interest in giving back. It also brings both the business and its workers out into their community.

Why does that matter?

Aside from its people, nothing is more important to a company than its brand. Charitable giving builds positive associations with brands. Consequently, that positive brand attracts more customers because they are purchasing products and services from companies that care. Their most valuable asset - people - represent that brand in their community. Their engagement fosters more meaningful bonds among employees and greater alignment with a company's culture and core values. Happy employees lead to happier customers and increased profits.

Employees give because they want to help. It just so happens they can concurrently benefit non-profits and businesses. We charge companies an affordable per employee subscription fee. Employees can set their personal payroll deductions for donations and track volunteer hours, check metrics and set goals, and get recommendations on causes to support, all of which will help them live a charitable giving lifestyle. All of this will make Encast a successful business that makes a difference, a profit, and puts more resources to work in the social sector.



Author: Leo Ramirez

Leo is the co-founder and CEO of Encast, an organization dedicated to improving the way CSR professions create, manage, and measure CSR programs. Leo is passionate about the role that culture plays in business success. Leo has launched and managed social ventures, lead multi-disciplinary teams, and built solid relationships with civic and corporate leaders. His 25-year career has spanned executive management, business development, consulting, nonprofit management, technical support and engineering positions with Southwest Key Programs, Oracle, Sun Microsystems, Coremetrics, Trilogy and Apple.

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