Gift acknowledgement letters are important for two reasons. First, they provide proof so donors can claim a U.S. tax exemption. Second, they let you thank donors for their generosity, helping you build a relationship for future support.
- Organization's name
- Donation description. If it is cash, give the amount. If it is not cash, describe it.
Did the donor receive goods or services--such as a gala dinner or concert tickets--from you in return for their donation? If not, make sure you say so. If yes, was it worth more than $75? Give a good-faith estimate of the value. Learn more here about what the IRS requires.
As for thanking donors, here's your chance to address them personally and sincerely. Make the letter about them, not you. "Donor-centric" messages -- those that focus on the donor's role in achieving the mission, not the nonprofit's -- make donors more likely to give again in the future, according to many fundraising experts.
Samples of written acknowledgements
Some of the staff-selected websites below contain samples. Also, search the Internet for "sample nonprofit gift acknowledgement letter." Other nonprofits' thank-you letters can give you ideas, but each organization is different so they might not be appropriate for your organization.
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