6 tips for holiday gifts that support wildlife conservation

6 tips for holiday gifts that support wildlife conservation

6 tips for holiday gifts that support wildlife conservation

By Karen Cooper | December 17, 2021

About the Author

Karen Cooper is African Wildlife Foundation's Senior Manager Special Gifts.


As the clock counts down to the close of 2021, the season of giving is underway. Consider these six easy, flexible, and impactful opportunities as you plan your giving this holiday season and support wildlife conservation through the African Wildlife Foundation.


Give appreciated securities (stocks, bonds, and mutual funds)

You can deduct the full fair market value of the appreciated stock you donate if you have owned it for more than a year. This way, you avoid paying the capital gains taxes (federal capital gains rate is 20 percent) if you sold it. In some cases, your tax-saving may even exceed the amount you paid for the stock, which means you can give more than what you may have planned to give with cash. And best of all — it is easy! Learn more about giving a gift of stock or contact Karen Cooper, Senior Manager Special Gifts at kcooper@awf.org for more information.

A new tech-savvy, tax-wise gift

Did you know the IRS classifies cryptocurrency (Bitcoin, Ethereum etc.) as property for tax purposes? That means if you donate cryptocurrency you can receive a tax deduction for the fair market value AND avoid the capital gains tax if you sold the crypto and then made a donation (just like appreciated stock).

You can gift cryptocurrency to the African Wildlife Foundation through The Giving Block, which will facilitate the transaction between your existing cryptocurrency wallet and the non-profit receiving the donation.

Donate through your Individual Retirement Account (a special opportunity if you are 70½ years old)

You can transfer any amount (up to a maximum of US$ 100,000) per year from your IRA directly to AWF without having to pay income taxes on the money. This popular gift option is commonly called the IRA Charitable Rollover or a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD). Other benefits of giving through your IRA include:

  • Beginning in the year you turn 72, you can use your gift to satisfy all or part of your required minimum distribution (RMD).
  • You pay no income taxes on the gift. The transfer generates neither taxable income nor a tax deduction so it is a win-win even if you do not itemize your deductions.
  • Since the gift does not count as income, a lower annual income may help decrease your Medicare premiums and the amount of your Social Security income that is subject to tax.

Make a grant recommendation through your donor-advised fund

Giving through donor-advised funds has exploded in popularity. Like a charitable savings account, you have the flexibility to recommend how much and how often (you can even set up recurring grants) to a qualified charity like AWF. Use our convenient and secure portal on AWF.org to send instructions to your fund administrator for a grant to AWF.

Take advantage of tax benefits that may expire this year

If you itemize your charitable contributions, you can claim a deduction of up to 100 percent of your adjusted gross income (AGI). This is an increase from previous limits of 20 percent-60 percent.

If you do not itemize your deductions, you can claim up to US$ 300 (US$ 600 for couples filing jointly) for cash contributions to AWF.

Make AWF a beneficiary of your legacy plans

You can continue to make an impact on Africa’s wildlife and wild lands beyond your lifetime by including AWF in your estate plans. Visit AWF.PlanMyLegacy.org to explore how your holiday season gift in 2021 can extend our important work well into the future.

Please consult your financial advisors about the best plan for you and visit the IRS website for more information on charitable contributions