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Blending DEI into Corporate Philanthropy Programs

The Cause(s) that make up your corporate philanthropy program

Causes–such as Environment, Racial Equity, Education–are core to all workplace giving programs, and most businesses select their cause(s) according to:

  1. Brand-alignment
  2. Employee passions
  3. Both (most popular and best practice) 

If you have not identified which cause(s) your company will champion, use our Passion Assessment Lite to ensure your corporate philanthropy program is brand-aligned and employee-driven.

The blend between your workplace giving program cause(s) and DEI

Businesses are becoming increasingly thoughtful about blending their workplace philanthropy efforts with their diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts–our customers included.

Many of our customers have recently come to us with some form of this same question: 

“How can we mesh our focus on DEI with our philanthropic efforts? Take employee volunteering, for example, should we have volunteer events focused strictly on DEI, or could we offer employees volunteer events that focus on their favorite causes and DEI?” 

We consult them that there are two ways to think about these “cause connections":

  1. Blend the two causes.
  2. Stack the causes in multiple layers. 

We also help them identify the cause connections that make the most sense based on their unique corporate philanthropy program. 

And through this work, we have identified many common cause connections, which we believe would be quite helpful for businesses beyond our customer community. So here is a list of cause connections you can use to blend DEI into your workplace giving program. 

Cause-level connections

+ where you and your company can make an impact.

Animal Welfare

Better adoption and ‘vet on wheels’ practices - just like healthcare deserts, there are veterinarian deserts. This lack of veterinarians and animal shelters is often in minority communities which directly impacts the likelihood of these minority families from giving their animals furrever homes. 

Arts & Culture

Cultivate creativity and self-confidence through arts & culture in poorly funded schools – arts & culture courses are so important for the upbringing of children but are often cut out of the curriculum due to budget cuts in poorly funded schools–where minority students most often attend.

i.e., NDI New Mexico (Percent Pledge vetted charity) is founded with the knowledge that the arts have a unique power to engage and motivate children. The purpose of their distinctive programs is to help children develop discipline, a standard of excellence, and a belief in themselves that will carry over into all aspects of their lives.

Disaster Relief 

Secure housing, food, and healthcare during natural disasters – natural disasters have a longer-term impact on minorities as they often struggle every day to secure housing, food, and healthcare, let alone during a disaster.

Environment/Climate Change

Government policy changes directly impacting the environment – climate change has a greater impact on minority groups as they live in areas more prone to destruction.


Healthcare access & quality for minorities – minorities receive less equitable healthcare, relative to other races

i.e., Peer Health Exchange (Percent Pledge vetted charity partner) provides a new form of culturally relevant sex education to under-served high schools where there are higher proportions of teen pregnancies and STDs.

Hunger & Homelessness 

Nutritious food access for minority communities – minorities are more likely to face food insecurities–in relation to race–as they are historically discriminated against from achieving economic success.

Indigenous Peoples

Eliminate stigmas and help tell their stories – indigenous peoples carry terrible stigmas increasing native nonprofits’ work in marketing and clear communication.

i.e., based on conversations Percent Pledge has had with some native nonprofits, they always need storytelling and awareness assistance. These stigmas are hurting them, and all their fundraising is internal, so telling their stories helps them engage with new supporters.


Healthcare access & quality for transgender people – the transgender community receives the least equitable healthcare, relative to other genders.

Racial Equity 

Access to employment for communities of color  – people of color are more likely to face unemployment as they are historically discriminated against from achieving economic success.

i.e., adding thoughtful racial equity nonprofit partnerships, internships, and employment opportunities will inspire your talent pipelines to make your workforce and industry more diverse. 

Sports & Recreation

Access to sports and recreation for young minorities – highly-funded schools have all sports options (football, basketball, soccer, etc.) while poorly funded schools--where minority students most often attend–have limited sports opportunities as that is a common budget cut.


Personalized support for minority veterans – minority veterans often find themselves lumped into one main category–in relation to race, sexuality, gender--and don’t receive the support they need and deserve. 

Women's Empowerment

Access to employment for BIPOC women in leadership and STEAM roles – there is a large absence and representation of BIPOC women in leadership and STEAM positions. 

Youth & Education

Increase access to highly reputable schools to minorities – minorities are more likely to attend poorly funded schools, inherently decreasing their chance of economic success as education usually speaks towards how much someone earns.

The list above should have provided you with a couple of new ways to impact the cause(s) your company champions. And know that Percent Pledge is here – we are happy to chat about partnering you with the right nonprofits doing this challenging work in solving these issues for minorities.

International Cause (footnote): across these causes and your corporate philanthropy program, your efforts should include and align with the communities your team members represent. Often remote, international employee groups are excluded from workplace giving programs because it is too difficult to find nonprofit partners and organize programming overseas. However, if you want to make your program diverse, equitable, and inclusive, this should be included in that effort – and is something Percent Pledge can help your business execute. 

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