Donor Advised Funds are a popular charitable giving tool. And right now is a perfect time to evaluate this planning strategy for your charitable giving.

In recent years, Donor Advised Funds have been one of the fastest-growing philanthropic planning tools in the marketplace. Donor Advised Funds are popular because they allow an individual or family to make a tax-deductible transfer that qualifies as a charitable contribution, and then recommend grants to favorite charities from the fund when the time is right. A Donor Advised Fund operates a lot like a checking account for charity, and it’s established according to IRS guidelines that provide tax advantages for you, as well as administrative efficiencies.

In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, giving from Donor Advised Funds at community foundations is accelerating. This is creating a significant boost for nonprofits and people in need. Indeed, the global healthcare crisis is precisely the reason that many donors established Donor Advised Funds in the first place: To be ready to give when needs are the highest.

According to a survey conducted by the Community Foundation Public Awareness Initiative, grants from Donor Advised Funds among the 64 community foundations surveyed increased nearly 60% in March and April 2020 compared with March and April 2019. At the Princeton Area Community Foundation, we saw an increase of more than 130% during that time frame.

A Donor Advised Fund helps the community right now, and it also allows you and your family to build a nest egg to address our community’s needs during future crises. For more information, contact Marcia Shackelford, Chief Philanthropy Officer.