KC Belitz: Consider giving this holiday season

Originally published in the Columbus Telegram

As the calendar has turned to December it brings into focus a couple topics I’d like to focus on today.

First is the wonderful tradition of year-end giving. Whether it’s driven by the altruism inherent in the holiday season or the more pragmatic realities of tax planning, December tops every other month for the number of gifts made to affiliated funds of Nebraska Community Foundation.

At NCF we regularly work with donors and their professional advisors to identify the best ways to meet their charitable giving wishes. For many donors, not only does that mean support to their favorite causes, but also financial planning that can prove advantageous to their tax situation.

If you are among those who have an interest in year-end giving, NCF is only of the resources you can and should consult. First, your family’s financial advisor and/or accountant is a key element of the partnership because they know your circumstances better than anyone else. If charitable giving is in your plan, NCF has among the best experts in the state to help you maximize the mutual benefit for you and the causes you want to support. Having said that, there are certainly other organizations who can help as well.

To make your year-end giving go smoothly, here are some guidelines from NCF that I think apply to any charitable giving you are considering.

  • Send contributions early to guarantee processing in 2022.
  • Credit card gifts and online gifts must be completed by Dec. 31.
  • Non-cash gifts may require additional lead time. Gifts of securities and charitable IRA rollovers should be initiated no later than Dec. 16.
  • Livestock markets and grain elevators may be closed on certain days around the holidays. Make sure gifts of ag commodities are transferred and processed prior to Dec. 31. And on this one, remember that the commodity has to be gifted BEFORE it’s sold to maximize the tax benefits.

I hope you’ll experience the joy of giving and close out 2022 by taking a positive step that makes things better for your neighbors and friends! Please contact me or any representative of your local NCF affiliated fund to discuss options.

The other two calendar-based considerations I want to lift up today relate our communities’ students. First, this is the time of year for initial indications of interest from NCF affiliated funds who might want to host a Hometown Intern next summer.

A hometown intern will be a current undergraduate college student who lives at home for the summer.  They will work part-time for the summer and a member of the Fund Advisory Committee will serve as supervisor for them. The work of a Hometown Intern has to be charitable in nature; which means working for a charitable, educational or civic organization or project.

Second, this is a key time for communities to identify their interest in a Youth Survey to be conducted in your local school(s) in the spring. We’re learning such important insights from these students in the three years they’ve been conducted! The youth survey requires participation from a local affiliated fund of NCF and the local school district(s). If you’d like to learn what your local students are thinking about their futures, contact NCF’s Kara Asmus at kasmus@nebcommfound.org to discuss an NCF Youth Survey.

For whichever of these time-sensitive topics you have interest, please contact me and we’ll get in touch with the right person!

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