Five Tips For Giving Tuesday, Charitable Giving During the Holidays
By Space Coast Daily // December 1, 2015
TALLAHASSE, FLORIDA – This Giving Tuesday, Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam offers five tips that consumers should consider before making a charitable contribution.
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services helps Floridians make the most of their charitable contributions by providing detailed information, like how contributions are spent, on charities registered in Florida.
You can find out more at FreshFromFlorida.com or by calling 1-800-HELP-FLA.
Floridians should take the following simple steps when preparing to make a charitable contribution:
1. Give with a Plan: Find a cause that is meaningful to you and your family, do some research and set priorities. Most effective donations are not spur-of-the-moment.
2. Know Who You Are Giving To: Most charities in Florida are required to register with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and provide financial information about how contributions are spent. Check a charity’s status online at FreshFromFlorida.com or by phone at 1-800-HELP-FLA (1-800-435-7352) or, for Spanish speakers, at 1-800-FL-AYUDA (1-800-352-9832).
3. Maximize Your Gift: When deciding to make a gift, find out if an employer will match charitable contribution to maximize its value.
4. Keep Track of the Work Your Donation Supports: Once a gift has been made, mark a calendar with important dates of the charity’s meetings and key events for the year.
5. Understand the Tax Benefits: Most charitable donations are tax-deductible. Make sure to get the proper documentation to deduct at tax time. Keep a record of donations and make sure a receipt is provided from the organization. Don’t rely on a cancelled check to count as a receipt.
For more information about individual charities, you can also check out our Gift Giver’s Guide online.
“Today and during the holiday season, many generous Floridians contribute their hard-earned money to support important causes,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam.
“But before giving, I encourage Floridians to follow a few simple steps to make sure they make the most of their contributions.”
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is the state’s clearinghouse for consumer complaints, protection and information.
The call center is staffed with trained analysts who can respond to questions about programs and regulations under the department’s purview, provide information on a wide variety of topics or direct callers to the appropriate government agency.
Consumers who believe fraud has taken place can contact the department’s consumer protection and information hotline at 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) or, for Spanish speakers, 1-800-FL-AYUDA (352-9832).
For more information about the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, visit FreshFromFlorida.com.