Do You Do Donations?

Business By Dreme Updated 20 Jun 2010 , 4:08pm by costumeczar

Dreme Posted 17 Jun 2010 , 7:00pm
post #1 of 12

Do any of you donate your goods (churches, organizations, for fundaraisers, etc)?

I recieved for the first time, two inquires. Both this week. One sent me a formal letter, a tax id, and asked for cake and the dress cookies I do. The other just asked for whatever I can send; no letter or id. I dont think im quite prepared and I have a few questions:

1. What do you donate? Do you get the upperhand and choose what you will send, or do you kinda go with what thier theme/cause is?

2. How much should you give? If someone is expecting 100 people at a benefit, do you give 100 peices?

3. I know this is a dumb question, but what do you do with the tax id number? Write off?

4. Do I need to give them any paper work?

5. Is there anything else I need to know or do?


11 replies
Lita829 Posted 17 Jun 2010 , 7:11pm
post #2 of 12

I guess it depends on the organization if you need paperwork. I sought them out instead of them seeking me. I currently donate to two organizations. One for the last 3 years and the other I started last year. I do not have any tax ID numbers. I get to donate what I want and how often I want. I donate anything from decorated cookies, pies, cuppies, brownies, quick breads...etc. One organization, I try to donate every 2 weeks and holidays and the other I donate to once a month. My income for the last two years has been low so it wouldn't have made much of a difference with my taxes. Next year might be a different story. I am just a hobbyist as of now but I think its wise to save receipts for groceries and supplies like boxes and cookie bags.


3lilmunchkins Posted 17 Jun 2010 , 7:13pm
post #3 of 12


I too was asked to donate a cake for a Hollywood theme function thats for cancer. With the tax id # you do write it off as an expense, your accountant will know exacltly how to do it. As for the size the lady told me she has X amount of guest coming and has X amount of cakes from other bakeries that are also donating. So I won't have to make a cake for everyone, just a cake for say 30 people. I'll make sure it's fabulous and it'll be a great way to get my name out. Check and make sure your not the only one making a cake, that would be a lot to ask from one bakery. You shouldn't have to give them any paper work because your the one providing a service for free, not them. I also like to have the tax id # because I know it's from a reputable company and I can write it off. I hope this helps.

Dreme Posted 17 Jun 2010 , 7:45pm
post #4 of 12

Thanks for the replies!

Thinking I may go with cookies. I was debating if I wanted to give the first organization what she wanted. Cookies seem like eaiser giveaways, but I dont want to make that many. Im pushing it on giving her 1 dz dress cookies. Each one can take up to an hour to make and I wouldn't want to make 100 for free. If I did something else would it be ok to do my business theme since both organizations said they would spread the work about my business and hand out cards?

3lilmunchkins Posted 17 Jun 2010 , 8:39pm
post #5 of 12

I'd find out what there expecting first. The last thing you want is to do something you like, but is not what they thought it was going to be and spread negative things about you.

johnson6ofus Posted 19 Jun 2010 , 2:07am
post #6 of 12

And decide what you want to donate based on what you expect in return.

Donation that is just supporting a charity you believe in and want to fund.


Donation as a way of advertising to generate business. (Lots here have complained that rarely happens).

Best of both worlds- both you and the charity benefit.

I wouldn't spend an hour making a cookie for a charity--- with 12 or 24 snapped up by the first in line. You want to be sure they have some "display" time so you benefit from the advertising.

costumeczar Posted 20 Jun 2010 , 1:41am
post #7 of 12

I donate if I want to, but not just because someone asks. Check with your accountant to see if your donation is tax-deductible through your business. It's kind of complicated, so check. This is from the IRS website:

Charitable contributions. Cash payments to an organization, charitable or otherwise, may be deductible as business expenses if the payments are not charitable contributions or gifts. If the payments are charitable contributions or gifts, you cannot deduct them as business expenses. However, corporations (other than S corporations) can deduct charitable contributions on their income tax returns, subject to limitations. See the Instructions for Form 1120 for more information. Sole proprietors, partners in a partnership, or shareholders in an S corporation may be able to deduct charitable contributions made by their business on Schedule A (Form 1040).

elvisb Posted 20 Jun 2010 , 2:12am
post #8 of 12

YES! Auctions, cake walks, school carnivals are all great ways for these clubs to raise money, and you get to do some advertising while helping them out! If it's an organization putting in a request, then I usually ask for some specific details so I get an idea of what they're expecting. One local church auction does well selling an actual cake, another church does better selling a gift certificate. So mix it up a little to see what will raise the most money. And by all means put your business card or something with it. I have a trifold brochure and a business card that I attach to each item I donate along with having my website address and "Im on Facebook!" in a very prominent place. And as far as taxes go, I write it down as advertising expense. Yes, it's a donation as far as that group is concerned, but as long as your business card is attached (in other words, not just an anonymous gift) then you can call it ad expense rather than a contribution. Less gray area for the IRS to question. And that comes straight from my CPA, who is very "by the book".

DragonFly2333 Posted 20 Jun 2010 , 2:55am
post #9 of 12

I'm in retail, not cakes, but we get hit up for donations like crazy!

We have a few guidelines to keep it under control; maybe this will help some of you:

All donation requests must be submitted on letter head and will be responded in a timely manner. Meaning they won't get a response when they drop it off.

All donations must be for a benefit event. No football banquets, community block parties or dog parties....YES I have been asked to donate to a dog party. People have no shame in asking for blood from a rock...because "it's great advertising" icon_rolleyes.gif

The benefit event must support the community my store is located in. Customers who work by my store but live on the other side of the city (and are hosting an event) don't even get to leave their letter.

Once we agree to donate we usually give them a gift certificate and they can use it how they choose. They may raffle it off at the event or use it towards their purchase in the store. It really is the easiest way to go b/c we did our part and it's up to them to make the most of it.

With how expensive and time consuming it is to make cakes and cookies I would offer a gift certificate. This way if you want to offer a cake/cookies that feeds 50 people they can pay for any additional slices/cookies they need.

My other friend who is a small business owner only donates to two organizations (generously) and keeps a sign posted in the front of his store that says we appreciate you considering us for a donation for your special event, but our donation budget has been fully assigned to organization A and B. I'm pretty sure JoAnn's and Michaels does the same thing....


costumeczar Posted 20 Jun 2010 , 2:15pm
post #10 of 12
Originally Posted by phoenixphillips

All donations must be for a benefit event. No football banquets, community block parties or dog parties....YES I have been asked to donate to a dog party. People have no shame in asking for blood from a rock...because "it's great advertising" icon_rolleyes.gif


Okay, I have to ask...What exactly IS a "dog party"? icon_confused.gif

DragonFly2333 Posted 20 Jun 2010 , 2:46pm
post #11 of 12

A dog party is just like any good mom throwing a party for their child, but it's a pet owner throwing a party for it's dog. And all the pet owners friends come and bring their dogs.

Surely you have heard of this. Along with "bring your dog to the baseball game" night

and bring "your pet to work" day.

And it's just not my neck of the woods I've seen it on reality shows and in movies....and my friend threw one after her dog recovered from hip surgery.

I personally think it's ridiculous....but everyone is entitled to their happiness no matter what form it comes in.

costumeczar Posted 20 Jun 2010 , 4:08pm
post #12 of 12

Those links just prove that some people have too much money and time on their hands! icon_lol.gif

Quote by @%username% on %date%