Local News: Maximize charitable giving through these methods (9/19/23)

Tuesday, September 19, 2023 ~ Updated 8:31 PM

Thank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!

How can donors support the charities they care about? No doubt, the most common answer is by contributing cash, writing a check or making a credit card gift online. Those are the easiest ways to make a difference, and all charitable organizations rely heavily on these gifts. But what about ways to make an even bigger impact?

According to three nonprofit leaders in the Southeast Missouri region, there are many ways to give that not only provide a greater benefit to the charity, but also give advantages to the donor, as well. Executive director of Safe House of Southeast Missouri Jessica Hill works extensively with individuals who want to give items other than cash, referred to as gifts-in-kind by the Internal Revenue Service.

“Our organization certainly benefits from generous individuals contributing a variety of items to our thrift store, as well as providing needed items for the benefit of the families we serve,” Hill said.

Approximately 30% of the Safe House of Southeast Missouri’s annual budget is funded through the thrift store, according to Hill. The organization has a wish list of needed supplies they encourage donors to review and donate items from. Gifts-in-kind are tax-deductible, so a donor can request a receipt from the charity they have donated to that describes the gift; it is up to the donor to establish the gift value for the tax deduction.

Grants, sponsorships and marketing support are another way individuals or businesses can donate to organizations they care about. Notre Dame Regional High School works with many donors who support fundraising events and make classroom enhancements and facility improvements.

Sign up for Daily Headlines

Get each day’s latest first thing in the morning.

“Although some of these aren’t necessarily tax-deductible to the business, Notre Dame is excited to partner with these generous supporters throughout the Southeast Missouri region on joint marketing opportunities, providing visibility for the school’s impact on our students and the community,” said Alex Jackson, former Notre Dame Regional High School director of advancement.

Another type of corporate support Jackson mentioned is employer matching gift programs. Through these initiatives, companies provide monetary support to charities that are important to their employees.

“Employees should always find out if their employer matches charitable contributions,” Jackson said. “These programs vary widely, with some companies matching employee gifts dollar-for-dollar, while others provide even more generous matching opportunities. Even retirees’ gifts are often matched, and, in a few instances, employers will provide a monetary gift for every hour that an employee volunteers for a nonprofit.”

Most donors are aware the Internal Revenue Service incentivizes charitable giving through providing a charitable income tax deduction for those who itemize their deductions. Alix Gasser, development director for the Southeast Missouri Network Against Sexual Violence (SEMO-NASV), said another opportunity provided by the federal government for people over the age of 72 is utilizing funds from their individual retirement accounts.

“An individual over the age of 72 is required to take a taxable distribution from his or her Individual Retirement Account (IRA) each year, but this same distribution becomes nontaxable if transferred directly to a qualified charity via a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD),” Gasser said. “Because of this rule, individuals over the age of 70½ can receive a tax benefit from a charitable gift even if they don’t itemize on their tax returns.”

Safe House of Southeast Missouri, SEMO-NASV and Notre Dame Regional High School have all received gifts from donors through QCDs but recommend donors consult with their financial advisors and accountants before making this type of gift.

The State of Missouri also provides tax credit programs for giving to charity. According to Hill, a tax credit is an amount subtracted from the total a taxpayer owes to the state. Hill said Safe House of Southeast Missouri participates in the Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Center Missouri Tax Credit program through which donors of cash, stock, bonds, real property or marketable securities can receive a tax credit for up to 70% of a qualified contribution of $100 or more.

“We have many donors who take advantage of the tax credits, and their gifts make up more than 10% of our total budget,” Hill said. “This has an incredible impact on the Safe House and the families we serve.”

Gasser said SEMO-NASV also participates in this program, as well as in the Champion for Children Missouri Tax Credits, which provides tax credits for gifts-in-kind valued at more than $100. Through this program, donors can receive a Missouri income tax credit for up to 50% of the qualified contribution.

Jackson said the MOScholars program is another type of tax credit program available to support students through educational assistance organizations. Four students at Notre Dame Regional High School currently receive full scholarships through this program.

There are certain limitations to the donor with any tax credit program, so the donor should work with the charity to find out more details. Donors should also speak with professional staff at the charities they are interested in supporting to find out how they can make the most impact. In addition, they should visit with their professional advisors to determine the best way to provide support considering their specific financial situation. Communication is the key to making a difference.

If interested in learning more about the work of nonprofits in Southeast Missouri communities, Southeast Council on Philanthropy (SECOP) is a group of charitable organizations seeking to advance philanthropy in Southeast Missouri through education, training and networking for nonprofit staff and volunteers. For more information, visit secoponline.org, follow SECOP Southeast Council on Philanthropy on Facebook or attend a meeting. The next meeting is Thursday, Oct. 19, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Cape Girardeau Public Library.

>>> ad: See the Best Amazon Deals of TODAY! <<<<
Originally Appeared Here

You May Also Like

About the Author: