ExtraGive Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Lancaster County Community Foundation’s (LCCF) New Requirements for This Year’s ExtraGive?
- LCCF is requiring all non-profits to post their non-discrimination policy on their ExtraGive page. There is no requirement for what it must say or what your policy must be as long as it meets the legal requirements for that non-profit. We may post both our “service” and “employment” non-discrimination policies and provide context to why we hire the way we do.
Does LCCF discriminate against religious non-profits based on their hiring practices?
- LCCF acknowledges that religious non-profits are exempt from certain aspects of non-discrimination and are free to hire in alignment with their faith, religious purpose and values.
What Is LCCF Trying To Accomplish with the New Requirements?
- LCCF has emphasized that transparency is their goal. Their hope is that all donors would see clearly whether the non-profit they are considering supporting aligns with their values regarding non-discrimination.
Why are Christian non-profits pulling out?
- The requirement to post non-discrimination policies has highlighted a significant difference between the values held by LCCF and those held by many Christian non-profits (including Water Street). This conflict in values is primarily around hiring of individuals who do not align with an organization’s religious beliefs and convictions related to issues of sexual orientation and gender identity. Because of this many non-profits feel it no longer reflects their values as an organization to be involved in ExtraGive.
- Some Christian organizations feel that it is inevitable that LCCF will eventually exclude them from the ExtraGive due to these differences and it is wiser to exit now.
Why are Christian non-profits staying in?
- The requirement to post non-discrimination policies does not cause them to compromise their values as a Christian organization.
- Many organizations, especially those in the social services sector, see this as an opportunity to represent Jesus in the public square and connect with partner organizations, both Christian and secular, in a meaningful way.
- Cooperation in the Extra Give does not mean an endorsement of the values of LCCF.
How does Water Street stand for Jesus in the public square and with secular non profits?
For over 115 years, we have always held clearly to our purpose: to advance the Kingdom of God through the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to do missionary, relief, and rescue work of all kinds. As a Christian non-profit, we are a team of believers in Jesus who align in our faith, purpose, and understanding of God’s work in the world. The love of Christ guides us to serve and care for all who come our way.
Through many years, we have partnered with numerous other organizations of all stripes, faith-based, secular, for-profit, and governmental. We always enter our partnerships transparent about our identity, purpose, and approach. If a partnership enables us to better serve the most vulnerable in our community, whom God has called us to serve, we will do so for their sake. But we will never compromise our mission, purpose, or biblical convictions in order to do so. We look to embody our core values (Dependence upon God, Service to the Church, Partnership with the Community, Authenticity in Relationships, and Grace as our Model), as we determine who to partner with and how to structure partnerships.
Why is Water Street Mission (WSM) staying in the Extra Give?
- WSM has historically engaged with many community-based organizations with whom we have strong disagreements. We do so when it will enable us to better serve our guests and fulfill the mission and purpose that God has for our organization, and we only do so when it does not compromise our identity, beliefs, values, and mission.
- Choosing to leave the ExtraGive because of differences in beliefs/worldview would be in contrast to how we have navigated numerous other relationships with community organizations.
- The ExtraGive is a community-wide event that enables Water Street Mission to share our heart, our purpose and our impact with thousands of our neighbors who may not be familiar with our work. It also allows us to highlight other partner organizations (both Christian and secular) and encourage generosity toward those who are doing positive work in our community.
- The requirement to disclose our non-discrimination policy does not require us to change our policy or align it in any way with LCCF’s standards. Water Street Mission is a religious non-profit and is allowed to hire in accord with our beliefs and values.
By staying in the ExtraGive, is Water Street Mission endorsing LCCF’s agenda or perspective on this (or any) issue?
- No, Water Street continues to hold to our core convictions. Association and participation does not imply agreement, but rather mutually aligning goals for the specific activity. In this case the goal is promoting generosity and lifting up the work of non-profits in our community, including our own.
Does Water Street Mission discriminate against LGBTQ+ or other individuals?
- All of Water Street Mission’s services and programs are available to anyone who meets the baseline qualifications (age restrictions for some programs, homeless and in need of shelter, mobility limitations, etc.). We do not withhold any services on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, or gender identity.
- Water Street is a religious non-profit, and as such, our state and federal laws allow us to hire staff that align and agree with our Statement of Faith and Qualifications for Employment which articulate expected behaviors that align with our understanding of Scripture as our final authority on all faith matters for the organization.
I’m a donor, what should I do?
- If you have given through the ExtraGive before and are comfortable doing so, please do again. None of the donation for Water Street Mission goes to LCCF (the fee goes to the giving platform GiveGab), and your gift will help Water Street continue to fulfill our God directed purpose in the community. Being on the leader board also helps others who don’t know Water Street well take notice and hopefully learn more about our work.
- If you are not comfortable giving through the ExtraGive, please know we fully respect that decision. There are many other ways to support Water Street Mission this fall.
Are you really just staying in the ExtraGive for the money?
- Water Street has greatly appreciated the ExtraGive through the years and it has been a blessing to receive such amazing financial support from our community through those amazing giving days. But our decision, at its core, is based upon relationship building and working collaboratively with our community, which we do every day.
- WSM views the ExtraGive as a day to highlight the many great organizations in our community that are working to help others. Our approach and messaging has often focused on helping our current donors learn about others we partner with and who might align with their giving priorities as well. We love hearing stories about donors finding new organizations to support because of our introduction.
- Our heart toward the ExtraGIve is similar to any fundraising event, it is a mechanism for people to give to WSM, but ultimately, we rely on God to move in the hearts of others to support His work at WSM and He will direct them through whatever event or tool He chooses.
What Is Water Street Mission’s Employment Policy?
- Water Street Mission (WSM) believes that spiritual unity among its employees is essential to the fulfillment of its mission. (1 Cor. 1:10; Eph. 4:1-4, 16). It is the policy of WSM to grant equal employment opportunities to all qualified persons without regard to race, color, sex, national origin, age (40+), genetic information, ancestry, handicap or disability, the use of a guide or support animal because of the blindness, deafness or physical handicap of the user or because the user is a handler or trainer of support or guide animals is hereby recognized as and declared to be a civil right or any other applicable characteristic protected by law. Every effort is made to select individuals who are best suited to the position based on qualifications, ability, work record, experience and fit. Qualified individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply and may be reasonably accommodated.
It is our intent and desire to provide equal opportunities in employment, promotion, training, wages, benefits, and all the privileges, terms and conditions of employment. This commitment applies to all individuals employed by and involved in the operations of WSM and prohibits unlawful discrimination by any employee of WSM.
It is the policy of WSM to recruit and hire only applicants who have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ and accepted Him as their Lord and Savior, as indicated on and consistent with our Statement of Faith, Qualifications for Employment and General Application form. WSM has an organizational exemption from the prohibitions contained in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, concerning religious discrimination in employment. We further reserve the right to discriminate or designate certain positions when a bona fide occupational qualification exists.
What Is Water Street Mission’s Service Policy?
- Water Street is guided by the mission that Jesus declared in Luke chapter 4, quoting Isaiah 61. As Jesus said, we strive to come alongside each individual to share hope and good news and meet the needs of those experiencing some of the most difficult life challenges, including poverty and homelessness.
As we fulfill this mission inspired and guided by Christ, we remain committed to serving any individual in need without regard to race, color, sex, national origin, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, or gender identity.