Giving Donations as Gifts: Is it the Right Choice?

Have you ever thought about giving a donation as a gift? I’ll be honest with you, it never really crossed my mind until recently.

It’s hard to shop for other people. Sometimes you just don’t know if someone already has that perfect gift you’ve found for them. Now that deals are around every corner on the internet, people prefer to buy their own gifts over time. So what can you get someone who has everything?

Maybe it’s time to try giving the gift of a donation. It doesn’t sound exciting at first, but hear me out. Most people have something they’re passionate about, and you can usually tell this by the kinds of posts they share on Facebook.

Is a donation gift the right choice for someone on your list?

Should I Give Someone a Donation as a Gift?

There are a couple of things to consider before just giving donations as gifts to everyone. They may not be a good fit for just anybody on your list.

Donations can be a tricky gift to give. There are a couple of items that you need to check for to make sure it’s a good fit for someone on your Christmas shopping list.

They have a passion for helping others.

The first and biggest item is that they are passionate about helping others. Someone that would enjoy the gift of giving is usually charitable or volunteers in their free time. If you know someone like that, consider donating in their name during Christmas. They’re more likely to enjoy the gift.

They don’t ask for gifts themselves.

That one person on your list that says, “No gifts, please!” is sure to be a contender for a donation gift. Since they’d rather you save your money or spend it on someone else, making a donation in their name is a pretty neat way to show you care and you’re thinking of them on Christmas. They’ll appreciate the gift of giving, too.

They would genuinely appreciate the thoughtfulness behind a donation gift this year.

While someone on your list may meet the other two items here, this year may not be a good time to get them a donation for Christmas. Make sure that the donation gift would be a good fit for this time in their life. If they just had a baby or moved into a new home, you should consider getting them something they could use for their new life event and save the donation gift for another time.

Three Places that Offer Donations as Gifts

Ready to give a donation as a gift this year, but don’t know where to start? Here are three great options for your donation gift needs. Each of these places is rated highly by either Great Nonprofits or Charity Navigator.

TisBest, also called TisBest Philanthropy, offer the option of purchasing charity gift cards for someone on your gift list. You purchase the card, and whoever receives it can use it on the charity of their choice.

This is great for someone who enjoys to give back, but may support many different causes. They can choose a charity from a variety of causes including animals, human rights, senior citizens, veterans and homelessness.

The charity receives the entire card amount minus the typical $1.95 transaction fee and 3% credit card processor fee for gift cards that are $10 or more. They are also tax deductible for the gift card purchaser (although this isn’t the reason for the season).

Donors Choose

With Donors Choose, you can get donation gift cards that allow you to choose a local school or classroom to donate your money toward. Teachers set up projects that need funding on the website. Donors go on the website and search by city to give donations more local impact. Right now, there are many Denham Springs classrooms in need of funding since the flood.

The amount needed to fund projects ranges from hundreds to thousands of dollars. The gift card gives the card holder the funding choice and helps them make a huge impact on local education. The classes usually provide updates to the donors in the form of hand-written notes and pictures, so the donor can see that the money is being put to good use.

Heifer International

Does that someone on your list want to make an impact on another country? Consider donating in their name through Heifer International.

Heifer has a gift catalog that lets you choose which gift the donor would like most. If the person receiving the gift is an avid supporter of women’s empowerment, you can choose to give “The Gift of Women Empowerment,” which provides women in third-world countries with a variety of support, including:

  • Training and assistance to help them become self-sufficient
  • Money to afford their children’s education and medical bills
  • Helping women to find their voice and boost their self-esteem

You can also give the gift of livestock to those in need. Either donate the full amount or a share of an animal, and they will donate the livestock to a village in need. The person whose name is on the donation gets a card in the mail with information on how their donation will make an impact.

Giving a donation as a present can be a wonderful gesture for the right person. It can help instill a sense of giving to others in children, and it can be the ideal gift for the person who would appreciate it most. Sometimes, it’s much better to give than to receive.

Have you ever given a donation as a gift or have you gotten one? Tell us your story in the comments!

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