CITIZEN REVIEW PANELS

Thank you for your interest in joining a Citizen Review Panel. We have reached capacity and are no longer accepting volunteers for this year's grant process. Please contact Sara Aviles at saviles@unitedwaymartin.org to be added to next year's list of volunteers.

The programs we invest in are helping real people right here in Martin County, which is why local people just like you determine where the donations go.
 
Through our fundraising efforts, United Way of Martin County brings together local resources, and we work with volunteers to ensure those dollars have the maximum return on the investment for our community.
 
With hundreds of nonprofits in Martin County, identifying which programs align with our community’s goals and aspirations is no small task. Many people do not realize that United Way staff does not decide who receives grants through our annual funding process. The Citizen Review process is the method by which local community representatives volunteer to evaluate the proposals from programs seeking United Way funding.
 
Our role is to help train United Way representatives from the local community who evaluate proposals from grant seekers. Every application for funding is vetted by these Citizen Review volunteers who live and work in our community. The goal is to identify the programs that best align with our work in Education, Financial Stability, and Health and can demonstrate measurable results in their respective area of focus.

What is a Citizen Review Panel?

A Citizen Review Panel is a group of volunteers and donors who review grant requests from local programs seeking United Way funding. 

Each year, United Way receives about 40-45 grant requests from local nonprofit organizations that are seeking funding for programs to improve education, health and financial stability for local residents. 

To review these grants, United Way coordinates approximately 15 Citizen Review Panels that are comprised of 5 volunteers per panel who review 3-4 grant requests.

What do Citizen Review volunteers do?

There are two parts to serving on a Citizen Review Panel 

  • Reviewing and scoring grant requests on your own time; and  
  • Participating in a site visit - either virtually or in-person - where you will visit the agency, listen to a presentation and ask any questions you may have.

How do I become a Citizen Review Panel volunteer?

  • Fill out the form below with your information and availability. 
  • You can select dates for the priority area that interests you (education, financial stability or health) or you can simply select dates that fit within your schedule.
  • Select ALL of the dates that you are available and then you can let us know in the following question how many panels you are willing to serve on (each panel is one day of site visits to review 3-4 programs). 

What are the next steps once I register?

  • By the end of March, you will receive your assigned grant requests and site visit date(s).
  • You will also receive a training video on the process and the online platform (don’t worry, it’s easy and low-tech options are available!) 
  • You will then be able to access the online platform to review the grants and begin the evaluation process.

What can I expect on the day of my site visit?

  • Volunteers will receive a schedule and, if attending an in-person panel, will need to provide their own transportation to and from the agencies. 
  • You will visit with 3-4 agencies to review their programs for approximately 45 minutes each and will then have a debrief at the United Way office where you can complete your evaluation. 
  • The approximate timeframe is 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. depending on the number of programs your panel is evaluating.
  • Lunch will be provided for in-person site visits.
For more information, contact United Way at 772-283-4800.

Citizen Review Panel Registration Form

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