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Foundation makes local end-of-year giving easy

The holiday season is rife with giving opportunities. With all the regional, national and international charities soliciting donations this time of year, local causes can be lost in the shuffle — especially if they don’t offer an easy way to give without taking a big tax hit.

The New Richmond Area Community Foundation (NRACF) is here to help.

“Every year in the fourth quarter we look to reach out to the community through our donor database and other individuals we have connected with as a reminder for tax planning purposes,” said Heather McAbee, board member and past chairwoman of the New Richmond Area Community Foundation. “The giving campaign is really not specific to any one thing in particular. It’s more about how they want to give.”

The foundation sent a letter in November that spells some of the services the organization offers along with a list of locally relevant funds that could make use of a generous donation.

“We’re always looking to better the community through our Community Needs unrestricted fund,” McAbee said. “That will support programs and different things the foundation does, but they could also look to support existing programs.”

The foundation also offers the opportunity to donate to family funds.

Among the several funds available for donors to contribute to, McAbee highlighted the Gap Fund, which provides emergency assistance to students with limited resources. The New Richmond Area Centre Fund, the Westfields Hospital Fund and the Library Building Fund were also mentioned.

“We have a number of families that already have established funds,” McAbee said. “Instead of doing Christmas gifts sometimes, they do donations toward the fund, which then can be distributed based on their wishes — whether it’s organizations that are included in their plan, or particular causes.”

The foundation also offers help to those looking for tax-free giving opportunities.

“There is a number of things they can do,” McAbee said. “For example, they can do IRA distributions to the foundation. They can donate stock or other assets like that through their charitable giving so it’s tax-free. If they have a stock that has really appreciated in value and they want to give without paying the tax on it if they cashed it out, if they donate it to us, it’s tax-free for them and for us.”

McAbee suggests that those interested work with the foundation’s accountant.

“We can help benefit by providing some of the support: the audit piece and the 501(c)(3) tax-free giving piece of it,” McAbee said. “We’re kind of a conduit to reach not only specific needs in the community, but also other related giving pieces.”

For example, the foundation has opened a fund to benefit the Grace Place campaign to move its shelter to its newly acquired building on West Eighth Street in New Richmond.

The following is a list of funds donors can contribute to:

• NRACF Community Needs Foundation

• Library Building Fund

• Gap Fund

• Recreational Trails Fund

• Community Commons Project Fund

• The Deerfield Fund

• McNally Athletic Complex Fund

• Performing Arts Fund

• Centre Fund

• Reach Out and Read Fund

• Westfields Hospital Long Term Fund

• Youth and Families Endowment Fund

• NRACF Unrestricted Memorial Fund

For more information about the New Richmond Area Community Foundation, visit

Micheal Foley
Micheal Foley worked at RiverTown Multimedia from July 2013 to June 2015 as editor at the New Richmond News. 
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