The Small Business Owner’s Guide To Charitable Giving

The Small Business Owner's Guide To Charitable Giving
Photo Credit: Business Enjoy

There are many reasons to choose a charitable organization to donate to. For small businesses, the decision to stand behind a cause and give money, time, or assets is an important decision. Today, we are going to look at the ways that small business owners can approach charity giving and what that means for an organization that collects donations in Australia. If you are already giving to a charitable organization, then you might glean some tips that will optimize this exchange and allow you to give more to the causes that you value.

#1. Hosting Fundraisers

Hosting a fundraiser is an excellent way for a small business to support a charity. The proceeds made at this fundraiser can go directly to your cause of choice, and it has the dual benefit of allowing you to host a fundraiser in a fun and creative way. You can also invite staff, clients, and the community to these fundraisers and bring them on the journey and educate them on why this charitable organization is special and deserving. Fundraiser events do not have to be large, and they can be planned with limited resources for your small business.

#2. Making Tax-Deductible Donations

If your small business does not have the time or resources to execute fundraising events or other charitable endeavors, then you might opt to make a financial donation. In addition to supporting the critical needs of a charity organization, these donations are typically tax-deductible. That’s not to say that small businesses will give with the intention of receiving something back, but it can be a persuading factor for other stakeholders who require convincing. If you intend to allocate part of your budget to a charitable cause, then you can even choose a different focus each year and allow employees to pick which matters best align with their goals.

#3. Volunteer Days

If small businesses cannot offer money through donations and fundraising efforts, then volunteering days can be a great solution. Give one, two, or as many days as you like to your employer to volunteer with a charitable organization that is important to them. Perhaps they can help out at a local homeless shelter, or they may want to support a community organization in an event that requires their professional nous. Be sure to be flexible with their volunteering needs and ask them how they went when they return to the office. 

#4. Salary Sacrificing Schemes

Could your business offer a salary sacrifice scheme to employees? This is a great way to give back to your employees, and they may even find that the financial savings they gain can be donated to local charity organizations. Salary-sacrificing schemes are often available for organizations that work in the not-for-profit sector, although you may be able to explore your options if you do not fall into this category.

If you are unsure what salary sacrificing is, it is a scheme that allows employees to use tax-free portions of their pay to use for mortgage repayments, certain participating restaurants, and retailers, and even novated leases for cars.

#5. Pro Bono Work

A very popular way to support charitable organizations is to offer pro-Bono work. Essentially, you will enter a relationship where your professional services will not be billed to that charity client, or your scope of work is greater than what they are paying for. The idea is that they receive the same quality of work as any paying client, allowing them access to professional services that their budget restraints may not cover. Larger charity organizations may have a government-backed budget and more access, so if you are considering bringing on a pro-Bono client, you may want to work with a smaller and less funded organization.

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#6. Community Needs and Value Alignment

If you know how you want to support a charitable organization but don’t know whom to help, you will need to do some reflection and research. For the most significant impact, choose an organization aligned with your business values and a cause relevant to your community. Note that it could be your geographic community or your industry community. The choice is yours, so take the time to choose wisely.

Do you have some ideas about how you can start your charitable giving journey in your small business? Start somewhere and you can always fine-tune your approach as you go and when you see what sort of reception these ideas get. Good luck

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