UPS Charitable Giving

UPS driver holding box

UPS (United Parcel Service) is well-known as one of the nation's top shipping companies. What many people are not aware of is that UPS is also very committed to charitable giving. Not only does the company deliver letters and packages worldwide, the organization also donates time, services and money to philanthropic causes around the globe.

UPS Charitable Giving Structure

The funds UPS donates are managed and administered by The UPS Foundation. The Foundation was established in 1951. In keeping with the company's corporate strategy of promoting within, the foundation uses expertise from its personnel to oversee its charitable giving programs and direction. The foundation is totally separate from the company. It has its own Board of Trustees and receives funding through annual donations from UPS's corporate profits. The Board holds quarterly meetings to monitor programs, review and revise strategies and approve grants. The UPS Foundation has been approved as a legitimate charity by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and is regularly audited for compliance.

Philanthropic Approach and Focus

In 2000, The UPS Foundation restructured its global approach to charity to be more globally influential and best utilize its physical and intellectual assets. The areas the foundation concentrates on include community safety, nonprofit effectiveness, environmental sustainability, economic literacy, global literacy and diversity. The bulk of the foundation's contributions are divided among several non-profit organizations.

United Way

UPS employees are encouraged from the day they are hired to help the United Way. The company's support of the charity is included in the UPS Policy Book. UPS and its employees have given more than $870 million to support United Way programs in Puerto Rico, Canada and the United States. UPS also donates the time and expertise of its executives to help administer United Way programs around the world.

Toys for Tots Literacy Program

UPS has supported the Toys for Tots programs throughout the United States since 2005. In 2008, the company initiated the Toys for Tots Literacy Program, which gains most of its support through UPS Stores and Mail Boxes Etc. retailers. The program has provided millions of donated books to hundreds of thousands of needy children throughout the country, with each community gathering and distributing the books locally.

Scholarship Programs

Although The UPS Foundation does not directly offer scholarships to the general population, it supports some of the most outstanding scholarship programs in the country. Among the most notable programs supported by UPS are the Foundation for Independent Higher Education, American Indian College Fund, United Negro College Fund, Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the National University of Singapore.

UPS also hands out scholarships to children of full and part-time UPS employees. Every year 100 children of full-time United States employees are given scholarship assistance, as well as 25 kids of part-time employees. One scholarship each is awarded to the children of full-time UPS employees in Mexico and Canada. The $2,000 to $6,000 scholarships help students continue their education in four-year college and university programs.


Although UPS no longer establishes endowment programs with colleges and universities, in the first 30 years of doing business, the company did so with institutions throughout the country. These endowments have considerably increased in value and are currently worth over $270 million.

Going Forward

The UPS Foundation prides itself in adjusting its charitable focuses to change with the times and constantly reevaluates where its efforts are most needed. The group concentrated on education and health care at its inception and realigned its focus to international and American volunteerism, hunger relief and literacy over the next decades. The UPS Foundation is dedicated to constantly examining the scope of philanthropic needs worldwide and adjusting its focal points accordingly.

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UPS Charitable Giving