Donor-Designated Program Helps Neighborhoods Raise Funds
Most neighborhood associations are not a charity, or 501(c)3 organization, and as such donors cannot deduct their gifts from their income tax. Neighborhood Alliance has a solution to this fundraising dilemma: the Neighborhood Alliance Donor-Designated Program.
Your donors can donate their gift to Neighborhood Alliance (NA) and indicate clearly on the check that it is for your specific project (i.e., Rose Hill Park Beautification Project). NA will mail your association a check for the full amount that was donated and the donor will get a letter they can use for tax purposes. The only catch is that the neighborhood project must meet the mission statement of Neighborhood Alliance: “to create safe, attractive and healthy neighborhoods throughout Central Oklahoma,” and be a special project that would not otherwise be paid for by mandatory homeowner dues.
Neighborhoods have raised $500 to over $200,000 using this program. They have used the monies to fund new ornamental lights, park improvements, improved entrances, sound walls, new landscaping, housing rehab programs, etc.
How does your neighborhood get started?
1.) Decide on your project. (It must be a project that fits our mission: to create safe, beautiful and healthy neighborhoods).
2.) Create a budget for your project and determine ways to solicit the necessary funds.
- Description of your project/how you intend to use the funds
- How much money you intend to raise
- Name, address and phone number of the neighborhood contact person for the project
- Timeline of the project (when you will be soliciting donations)
4.) Neighborhood Alliance charges a small $25.00 administrative fee for this program that you will owe at the end of the project. This simply covers the mailing costs of the tax letters to your donors. We donate the bookkeeping, auditing, paper and staff time it takes for us to administer this program. It cannot come out of the funds that you collected for use on the project. It must be paid by the Neighborhood from separate funding.
5.) Begin a fundraising campaign. Include on your materials information that indicating that donors can make a tax deductible gift by making their check payable to Neighborhood Alliance, and designating (on the check) that it is for your neighborhood project. Donors may either mail their check directly to our office, or the neighborhood can collect them and bring them to our office.
6.) The donor will receive a letter from Neighborhood Alliance that they can use for their tax purposes.
7.) There is a simple accounting form you must fill out that tracks the funds collected by the Donor Designated Program, and the expenditures. We will need check numbers and the name of the party to whom the checks were written. Total of all checks written by your neighborhood must equal at least the amount of money issued to you from your designated fund. The form to track these expenses will be sent to you upon approval of your program and is available HERE.
8.) To request funds, you will need to present Neighborhood Alliance with a copy of an invoice from a vendor. We will write the check payable to your Neighborhood Association only for the amount of an invoiced service or product. We cannot write it to a vendor or a neighborhood individual.
9.) Remember, it is the neighborhood’s responsibility to thank all donors that give to your project.
Participating associations will be invoiced for the administration fees once all contributions have been processed and Tax Donation Receipts have been completed.
When your project has been reviewed and approved, Neighborhood Alliance will send you a letter giving you permission to use the Donor Designated program. We can even supply you with a template for a donation pledge form you can use while soliciting donations. Once you receive permission you can begin your fundraising!
For more information on this program,
call Neighborhood Alliance at 528-6322.
1236 NW 36th St, Oklahoma City, OK 73118