Give Anonymously By Giving Through a Community Foundation

There are a number of reasons why donors prefer to keep their charitable contributions anonymous from both the public and the charities to which they give. They may hold personal convictions about keeping good works private or prefer to draw attention to the cause rather than the giver, or they may support a cause that friends or neighbors consider controversial. Many donors simply do not want to receive additional charitable solicitations or have legitimate security concerns.

While donors often try to make anonymous gifts through various channels, not all guarantee that gifts will remain anonymous. When donors give directly to non-profits or set up private foundations, trusts, and other entities, their information is often included in tax filings and other paperwork that may be available to the public. This information can be used to trace gifts back to the donors. In addition, staff members at non-profits that receive a gift may still have access to donor information.

One of the easiest and most effective ways donors can give anonymously is to establish donor-advised funds through community foundations where funds can be given nondescript names. Gifts from funds can be recommended by the donor but are identified by fund name. All communications with recipients are handled by the Community Foundation, and we never disclose personal donor information to outside sources without donor consent.

Giving anonymously is one of the many ways community foundations help donors meet their philanthropic goals. For more information on setting up an anonymous fund, contact Linda Mack, Vice President of Development and Donor Services at Community Foundation at lmack@cfncm.org or 978-345-8383, x 321.

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