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Importance of Donor Advised Funds

By January 14, 2021 No Comments

Donor advised funds (DAFs) represent tremendous opportunities for individuals and families to fulfill charitable or philanthropic goals. Utilizing the administrative and program structures of the Northwest Minnesota Foundation (NMF), these funds allow donors practical advantages for making charitable gifts to a variety of nonprofit organizations, the highest charitable contribution deductions allowed by law, and the ability to work with Northwest Minnesota’s largest public foundation in helping to make the region a better place to live
and work.

A donor advised fund is a charitable vehicle housed within a 501c3 public charity that allows a donor to make a gift, take an immediate charitable deduction, and recommend grants to any IRS qualified public charity.

It is an easy process! Individuals can establish a fund with a purpose and contribute cash, securities, or appreciated assets. You’ll be eligible for a current-year tax deduction and can be more strategic about your giving decisions.

There is no required payout and you can accumulate income while grant decisions are being considered. NMF will handle all investment and accounting, filing of annual tax return and we provide an annual independent audit.

Donors can receive recognition for their grants or remain anonymous – whichever they prefer. Fund assets and grant activity is confidential, known only to the fund’s advisors and select NMF staff and Board. We only publicize information when we receive permission from the donor.

You may have seen in our recent Special Giving Edition of the Resource newsletter that the Howe-Thiel Charitable Fund supported the Bemidji Community Food Shelf during the onset of COVID-19. Thanks to the flexibility of a donor advised fund, the Howe-Thiel Family was able to meet the emerging needs of a charity near and dear to their hearts during unprecedented times.

A donor advised fund enables a donor to provide input in choosing which organizations receive grants from the fund. This type of fund provides great flexibility to the donor while avoiding the costs and demands of a private foundation. At certain levels, this fund enables donors to involve heirs in giving during and after the original donor’s lifetime.

To establish a DAF, you can contact one of NMF’s development officers. Visit here to learn more.

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