What is Giving Tuesday?
Giving Tuesday is celebrated the week after Thanksgiving and has become a time for Americans to share their good fortune by making charitable gifts.
92nd Street Y started the movement in New York in collaboration with the United Nations Foundation. The goal was to create a day to encourage people to do good. GivingTuesday was spun out into a separate organization in 2019.
How to Participate
Participating in GivingTuesday entails becoming a part of a global movement to encourage charity, and there are numerous ways to do so. Being generous is a way to advocate for the causes you care about and help people in need, whether you contribute your voice, goods, time, or money.
Here are some more ideas to think about:
- Do a good deed for your neighbors
- Share your skills pro bono with nonprofit or person in need
- Donate your time and energy to a cause that matters to you
- Join a local fundraiser, community drive, or organized event in your neighborhood
- Organize a fundraiser to aid those in need
- Donate to a worthy charity
- Talk about how you give back to your community using the hashtag #GivingTuesday
Do your Research
Taxpayers considering where to invest their time and money have limitless options. The following tips will help donors ensure their charitable efforts are well spent.
Important questions that can be gleaned from the organization’s public tax filings include:
- Are they listed as a recognized 501(c)(3)?
- Is the mission clear and focused?
- Does the description of how they plan to spend the funds make sense?
- How many board members are independent? (check page 1 of Form 990)
- Is executive compensation reasonable?
- Are there a suspicious number of related party transactions?
- Are overall administrative costs reasonable considering their accomplishments?
- Are there significant program service accomplishments?
Exempt Organizations Select Check on IRS.gov permits donors to search for charities, confirm their organization is tax-exempt and eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions, and review their tax filings.
EO Select Check does not list specific organizations that may be eligible to receive tax-deductible donations, such as churches, organizations in a group ruling, governmental entities, and organizations’ “doing business as” name.
- Exempt Organizations Select Check – Search Tips
- Exempt Organizations Select Check Frequently Asked Questions
Several organizations publish information on charities, including the following:
However you choose to participate in Giving Tuesday, you will feel greater satisfaction knowing your efforts are going to a group making a difference.
Ellis Carter is a nonprofit lawyer with Caritas Law Group, P.C. licensed to practice in Washington and Arizona. Ellis advises nonprofit and socially responsible businesses on corporate, tax, and fundraising regulations nationwide. Ellis also advises donors with regard to major gifts. To schedule a consultation with Ellis, call 602-456-0071 or email us through our contact form.