By Evan Vitale
To donate to a charity and how much to donate is always a tough question when it comes to wanting to help a local charity in need, keeping our personal budget in check, paying off debts and saving some money for a rainy day.
Still, the need of local charities is great and constantly pulls at our heartstrings to give something to those who have less than what we enjoy (and take for granted) on a daily basis.
How can you help?
– Many religious faiths ask local members to give 10% of their earnings as tithes. Anything beyond 10% is considered an “offering.” Many choose to give through their church, who then can decide how to use it in local missions, food banks, etc.
– If you want to give a financial donation to a local charity, some will allow you to break up a yearly donation into 12 monthly amounts charged to your credit card making payments easier.
– If you can’t give financially, many charities are more than happy if you give your time to help. This can include running errands, secretarial work, designing or updating a website, painting and other maintenance duties and more.
– Giving extra food such as canned goods or fruit to a local food pantry or church outreach program is always a welcomed option. Food is always in high demand year-round, so you may consider picking up a few extra cans of food or pasta when you’re doing your regular weekly grocery shopping.
– Donate your good, used clothing. There’s probably some clothing items in your closet that no longer fit or you don’t like anymore. As long as they are “gently used” or better, they will always be appreciated.
– Donate your used car. Instead of trading in your car during your next auto purchase, some charities accept used cars as donations. These are then sold at auto auctions with the money from the sale going to the charity.
In all cases, be sure to get a receipt for your donation as they are tax deductible. For more information, contact your local charity and talk to your accountant.