Holiday Charitable Giving Guide

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Essential information and nonprofit needs to inspire donors in the 2020 giving season.

Helpful tips and important dates for year-end giving

Like so many other things in life, year-end giving in 2020 looks a little different. With new charitable-giving rules from the CARES Act and heightened nonprofit need due to the pandemic, there are opportunities to maximize the impact of your personal philanthropy.

Deducting gifts up to $300

With the passage of the CARES Act, donors who take the standard deduction on their tax returns can deduct up to $300 for gifts to nonprofit agencies. This “above the line” deduction means you can reduce your gross income by $300 and still take the standard deduction on your 2020 tax return.

For those who itemize deductions

If you plan to itemize deductions on your 2020 tax return, the CARES Act increased the AGI (adjusted gross income) limitation for cash donations to public charities from 60% to 100% for 2020 with an exclusion on gifts to donor-advised funds. This means cash gifts are more deductible this year than in past years, and gives a few options to CFO donors:

  • Make a cash contribution to an already established community grantmaking, scholarship, designated or field-of-interest fund
  • Establish a new fund (donor-advised funds excluded) with the CFO or one of our 51 regional affiliate foundations with a gift of cash.

Please contact us if you have questions regarding the types of funds and what might fit your charitable goals. As always, the CFO does not give tax or legal advice, so please consult your advisor. If you don’t yet have a professional advisor, members of the CFO’s Professional Advisors Council can be found at

Giving directly to nonprofit agencies

If you choose to give directly to your favorite causes and charities, we recommend making unrestricted donations to support operations. These are the most flexible types of gifts, allowing agencies to use funds where they need them most to ensure their ability to provide important services to our communities.

Scroll down for a growing list of links to year-end campaigns and other needs from our nonprofit partners.

To donate time or physical goods, contact agencies to find out what items or services are most needed, as well as how to coordinate delivery of your donation or volunteer services. To learn about volunteer opportunities, is a great local resource.

Giving as a gift

Are you not sure what to give someone, or are unable to exchange gifts in person? Consider making a donation to someone’s favorite cause or agency this year. Many nonprofits, including the CFO, have the option to make a tribute gift in someone’s honor. If possible, provide that person’s contact information so they can be notified of the gift.

Important dates

  • If you plan to make a gift of appreciated stock, please initiate the transfer by Dec. 18 and inform the CFO office before making the transfer.
  • All mailed checks must be postmarked by Dec. 31 to count for 2020 charitable giving, and please allow adequate time for wire transfers.
Year-End Campaigns

Support the fundraising efforts and immediate needs of our nonprofit agency partners. (More added as they are received!)

Community development nonprofit icon
Friends Of Abilities First Inc/Art Inspired Academy

Friends of Abilities First promotes inclusive opportunities for people with developmental disabilities. Funds will support communication efforts during this difficult time of seclusion. Our programs support community engagement for all. Contact Julie Jones at 417-830-3130 or

Support our mission by becoming a donor today.
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