Building and maintaining trust is an important component in creating change. Certification helps safeguard donors' investment in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County by ensuring that United Way funded organizations are managed effectively and meet United Way's standards of excellence.
United Way invites certification applications from any 501c3 nonprofit serving Harrisonburg and/or Rockingham County. The application assesses the capacity of the applicant in the areas of organizational management, human resources, board governance, and financial management.
Upon completion of the application, a United Way volunteer certification team conducts an on-site visit with the organization's staff and/or board representatives, then makes a certification recommendation to the United Way Board of Directors, which determines whether to certify, not certify, or provisionally certify the organization. Certification is required every 2 years.
United Way invites grant proposals from any certified nonprofit in alignment with the criteria outlined in the Community Action Plan and Community Impact Fund Guidelines. Applications are reviewed by dozens of community impact team volunteers from a broad array of professions and industries in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.
Following grant submission, applicants are given the opportunity to clarify their grant request during oral presentations, which are open to the public.
After reviewing the applications and viewing the presentations, Community Impact Teams make funding recommendations to the United Way Board of Directors, which makes final partnership decisions.