Tag Archives: charity

When should your nonprofit organization reconsider a special event?

Not-for-profits use special events to raise large amounts in a short period of time. Most often, the donor receives a direct benefit from the event — such as dinner or participation in a gaming activity. But special events don’t always meet their fundraising goals. In fact, organizations can lose money on them. Following these steps can help boost your event’s potential and enable you to decide whether to hold it again in the future.

Step 1: Make a budget

Planning and holding a successful event is a process that should start with a budget. Estimate what you anticipate revenue to be. If costs are likely to be greater than revenue, consider forgoing the event. Of course, you can also come up with a less costly event or look for sponsors to help defray expenses.

Step 2: Develop a marketing plan

Determine the target audience for your event and the best way to reach that audience. For example, bingo nights are often popular with seniors. And they may be more likely to read about the event in the local newspaper than on your nonprofit’s blog.

Step 3: Account for everything

Track all of your event’s costs to arrive at an accurate net profit amount. For example, a gala’s costs could include:

• Amounts paid to market the event, such as printed invitations and paid advertisements,
• Amounts paid related to the direct benefit that the participant receives, such as food, drinks and giveaways, and
• Other actual event costs, such as rental space and wait staff.

Step 4: Evaluate the event

After the event, review a detailed statement of its revenue and expenses, and compare them to what was budgeted. Take a look at ticket sales: Did you bring in the amount you had anticipated? Was the attendance worth the amount of planning and organizing that went into the event? Next, evaluate money raised at the event itself. How much did your silent auction or raffle raise? Did you make more than the fair market value of the items donated?

Also review unexpected expenses. Were these “one-time” or “special” costs that aren’t likely to occur yearly, or are they recurring? The answers to these questions can help you determine if the event was a true success.

Crunching the numbers

Consider these results — along with changes in your organization and evolving economic conditions that could affect profitability — when determining whether your event is likely to be successful in the future. If you’re unsure, contact our reputable professionals at Perry, Fitts, Boulette & Fitton CPAs. We can help you crunch the numbers.  207-873-1603

 

© 2018

PFBF CPAs “Run the Numbers” 5K & Kids Fun Run to raise funds for the Camp Tracy Campership Fund: The Harold Alfond Foundation to match every dollar raised

The PFBF CPAs “Run the Numbers” 5K & Kids Fun Run started in 2010 and raised $1,700 for charity. Eight years later the race has grown in numbers, bringing in over $100,000 for various Maine charities thanks to their participants and generous community sponsors.

This year, all proceeds will go to the Alfond Youth Center’s Camp Tracy Campership Fund. The funds will help send area youth to Camp Tracy where children are taught team building, leadership, and independence skills through a wide variety of daily activities while having a positive social experience. The Harold Alfond Foundation has agreed to make a matching donation for every dollar raised.

Be a ‘Champion for a Camper” at this year’s race!

The 9th Annual road race will be on Saturday, June 16th which begins and ends at the office of Perry, Fitts, Boulette & Fitton CPAs (PFBF CPAs) on 46 First Park Drive in Oakland. The Kids Fun Run, free for kids 12 & under, starts at 8:30 a.m., followed by the professionally timed 5K Run/Walk which starts at 9:00 a.m. Youth and student rates are available.

Kids Fun Run starts at 8:30 a.m.

Cash prizes will be given to the top three Overall Female/Male finishers as well as the top male and female finishers in each category. There will be a post-race party with music, food and drinks. Mac Dickson of 92 Moose will return for his 6th year as the Master of Ceremonies.

 

Register Here! For questions and more info, contact Race Director, Melissa (Sawyer) Boulette at msawyer@pfbf.com or 873-1603.

 

IT’S BETTER TO GIVE THAN TO RECEIVE

Since moving to the Mid-Coast area a few years ago, my wife and I have been called upon many times to help a number of local charities. We are very strong believers that it is our obligation to make our community stronger during our brief stay in this wonderful world so we choose to help where we can. We ask all readers to support their favorite local charities as they are the heartbeat of society, making a difference in all of our lives.

Two of our favorites include the Bath YMCA and Big Brothers Big Sisters. For over 150 years, the Bath YMCA has promoted healthy living and provided youth with a safe place to grow. BBBS has been creating nurturing relationships for children facing adversity since 1904. Clearly both organizations make a positive impact on the lives of youth in our area. What they also have in common is that they are both qualified charitable organizations defined under the IRS Code.

As most already know, donations to nonprofit groups like the YMCA and BBBS are tax deductible if you itemize deductions. By definition, a donation is voluntary and is made without getting, or expecting to get, anything in return. To be deductible, a donation must also meet other strict criteria as outlined in IRS Publication 526.

Most of you reading this column have a good handle on what is deductible. Donations to the annual appeal at church, the building fund at the hospital and expenses paid when you volunteer at the museum are all examples. What you cannot deduct are the cost of raffle tickets bought to benefit a charity, the value of your volunteer time, the value of your blood given at the local blood drive, political contributions or the cost of your girl scout cookies. (…sigh)

Donations can get a little sticky when goods or services are received as a result of the contribution. Take for example, the local fundraising silent auction that you pay $1,000 to stay a beach house. If the fair value of that stay is $1,000, you have not made a contribution and no deduction is allowed. If, however, you pay $1,500 for the same stay you could be entitled to a $500 deduction.

For those who think that there is a safe amount that can be deducted be warned, the IRS has many strict rules for deducting charitable contributions. The rule that impacts most people is the requirement that individual contributions of $250 or more be backed with a written acknowledgement from the qualified organization. The acknowledgement must be in your possession before you file your return, include a description of the gift and a statement as to whether you received any goods or services as a result of the contribution.

My wife and I firmly believe that we all have an obligation to give back. Giving back is the life blood for local charities, and the tax deduction feels good too. The next time you attend a charity auction, bid high and bid often.