Saturday, August 23, 2014

How to Donate to Charity Without Giving Money


Do you donate to charity?  Do you know why you donate to a specific charity? Do you donate only to tax deductible charities?  A study by the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University showed that only 8% of charitable donations provide basic necessities, food and shelter. 

Individuals who donate to charity may deduct contributions on their federal tax returns. Contributions must be made to legitimate charity to receive a deduction. Donating to charities provides a way for you to help others. Now more than ever charities need your help. There are so many people suffering in the United States and across the world but they need your help.   Here are 17 ways to donate to charities without giving money.

  1. Give appreciated assets.  Appreciated assets include stocks and real estate. By donating an appreciated asset, you can get the tax deduction based on the current value.
  2. Mentor. Mentor or encourage boys or girls or young adults in your personal and professional life or volunteer to mentor boys or girls or young adults in your community.  
  3. Invest in others. Donate money to a relative, friend who want to start a business or to a crowd funding initiative you believe in.  Also consider becoming an angel investor for a startup or existing business.
  4. Donate a car.  Make sure the charity is eligible to receive tax deductible contributions. Ask for a copy for your records of the organization’s IRS letter of determination which verifies its tax exempt status. Get a receipt from the charity for your car donation.
  5. Donate Goods. Donate non-cash items that are new or in good condition such as clothing, shoes, books, etc. to the Salvation Army, Goodwill or other organizations.
  6. Host a student. Host an exchange student.
  7. Volunteer. If you volunteer your time and services to help a charity you can deduct certain expenses. Keep receipts of all expenses.
  8. Keep receipts.  For non-cash gifts, request a receipt with the name and location of the nonprofit, date of the donation, and description of the item.
  9. Make Something. Use arts and crafts to sew clothing, blankets, croquet, create decorations, make gifts, candles, pottery, art work or jewelry.
  10. Hair. Donate your hair to Locks of Love or other organizations for patients that experience hair loss due to medical treatments.
  11. Volunteer. Volunteer with organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, churches, schools, hospitals, shelters or other organizations.
  12. Blood. Donate blood to the American Red Cross, hospitals or other organizations.
  13. Nike. Donate your old Nike sneakers to the Nike Reuse-a-Shoe centers which use them to create materials to create playgrounds and tennis courts.
  14. Sign up. Sign up for opportunities such as teaching a class or many other tasks through websites like or
  15. Body. Register to be an organ donor or bone marrow donor.
  16. Elections. Volunteer to assist with voter registration or voter elections.
  17. Points. Donate credit card rewards points to a charity.

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