Second Chances Garage is just one of an estimated 1.5 million non-profit organizations that accept donations in the United States. These organizations meet a lot of needs in the community such as feeding, healing, sheltering, educating, and nurturing people. These groups work together for the common good of the community and share their hopes and beliefs with those who are donating and in a position to help.
Non-profit organizations have a variety of ways in which they get funding to continue to operate. While some may be able to operate solely on grants and government funding, most non-profits need the help of donors to ensure their mission is fulfilled in the community.
By helping these organizations through donations of money, goods, or time, you stand to benefit in multiple ways. In this article, we will explore some practical and some more intrinsic ways donors benefit from supporting community non-profit organizations.
What is a 501(c)(3)?
You may have come across the term “501(c)(3)” when looking at non-profit organizations. This title refers to the section of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code and specific tax categories for non-profit organizations. Not only does this designation from the IRS exempt organizations from paying federal taxes, but it also gives a benefit to the organizations and individuals who donate to them.
In order to make donating to non-profit organizations enticing, the IRS has designated donations to certain types of nonprofits as tax-deductible. In order to receive a tax deduction, the donor must:
- Ensure the organization they are donating to has been given 501(c)(3) status from the IRS.
- Itemize their tax return to include the deduction.
- Deduct the contributions for the year in which they made it.
Not the Only Benefit
Tax deductions are beneficial and help put money back into your household. However, there are other ways you can benefit from donating to a non-profit organization:
- Impact Your Community
Your donation to local 501(c)(3) organizations has a direct impact on the community in which you live. Helping people in the community get back on their feet directly helps your local economy as people are back to work and becoming contributing members of the community once again.
- Inspire Additional Support
Generosity is often contagious! Leading by example, you could motivate family members, friends, and colleagues to support charities that speak to them. Your support could also inspire someone who once received help from nonprofits to give back when they are in the position to do so.
- Raise Generous Kids
When kids are raised in a home where donating time and money to those less fortunate is a priority, they pay attention. That could look like organizing a lemonade stand or another way to raise money on their level. Additionally, as they grow older, donating to non-profit organizations is more likely to become part of their lives.
- Be a Happier Person
There are actual biological links between giving and donating and your general mood or level of happiness. A 2010 study showed a connection between the reward center of the brain and people who gave to non-profit organizations in their community.
No matter your motivation – tax deduction or personal fulfillment- giving to 501(c)(3) organizations ultimately offers the best benefit to one place: Your community. With your help and the help of community organizations, your neighbors can get their life back on track. In a world where everyone deserves a second chance, perhaps that’s the best benefit of them all.