Donor Advised Funds
Want to learn more about donor advised funds? View and download the FREE guide One-Stop Giving: The Convenience and Simplicity of Donor Advised Funds.
Are you looking for an easy, cost-effective way to support Northern Illinois University and other causes you love? A donor advised fund, which is like a charitable savings account, may be the right choice for you.
Here's how it works. You transfer cash or other assets to a tax-exempt sponsoring organization such as a public foundation. You can then recommend—but not direct—how much and how often money is granted to the NIU Foundation or other charities—sometimes as easily as using a Web portal. And you avoid the cost and complexities of managing a private foundation.
You qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction at the time you contribute to the account, and the power to make recommendations on which charities to support whenever you want. You centralize your giving and record-keeping in one location. And maybe best of all, you can start a legacy of giving by letting your children help decide which grants to recommend.
Joe and Laura want to give back to their hometown by putting their money where it will do the most good. They establish a $25,000 donor advised fund with a community foundation. The couple receives a federal income tax charitable deduction for the amount of the gift. They also get all the time they need to decide which charities to support. After researching community needs with the foundation's staff, Joe and Laura recommend grants for the NIU Foundation (which they've supported for years) and the Animal Rescue League. The foundation presents the charities with checks from the Megan Fund, which Joe and Laura named in honor of their granddaughter. Joe and Laura are delighted to start this personal legacy of giving.