12 Days of Charitable Giving 2010

There are 39 days left until the end of the year. That means you have just a little over a month to whittle down your taxable income. Sure, you could buy your entire staff a set of taxgirl mugs for the holidays – or you could make a nice charitable donation. It’s the “feel good” deduction of the year!

I represent a lot of charitable organizations and I know that it’s tough out there all around. Donations are down for many organizations and the needs are up, especially in soup kitchens and shelters. As in years past, I want to both encourage you to make your charitable gifts by the end of the tax year (this is, after all, a tax blog) and to spread the word about some pretty deserving organizations. So, for 2010, I’m doing my annual 12 Days of Charitable Giving – but this time with a twist.

This year, I’m asking readers to submit, via email to charity@taxgirl.com, the name of a charity that most deserves a boost this year. Ideally, it would be one that you have supported financially over the past year or that you plan to support before the year end. In addition to the name, I’ll need the city where the charity is located, what it does and why you support the charity (personal stories would be great). A link to the web site and the best way to make a donation would be terrific: the more information that you can provide, the better.

The charity must be a bona fide 501(c)(3) organization, meaning that deductions are tax deductible to the donor. Examples include churches, schools, libraries and purely public charities like the Red Cross. If you’re not sure about the tax status of the organization, you can check it out here. Additionally, most charitable organizations will post evidence of tax-exempt status on their web site.

Convince me why your favorite organization is a deserving charity. I’ll review the emails and choose twelve to feature at my discretion. I might even involve the brain trust (i.e. my office) in the pick. The winning choices will be featured, one per day, for 12 days in December on taxgirl.com. It’s a great way to get some exposure for the charity of your choice. The hope is that one donation (yours) turns into more (readers) and a big win for the charitable organization.

The deadline for nominations is November 30, 2010 at 11:59 p.m. What are you waiting for? Go, do something good!

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