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3 Ways to Be Charitable this Holiday Season

The Holiday Season is also the Season of Giving - nearly one-third of annual giving occurs in November and December.
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Unique challenges emerged for philanthropy in 2023:

  • Federal pandemic relief programs for essential services like food, housing and healthcare ended, increasing demand for nonprofits.
  • High inflation rates continued to impact both donors and nonprofits.
  • Charitable giving decreased by 3.4% between 2021 and 2022, totaling $499.33 billion.
  • National and international donors responded to disaster relief efforts in Ukraine, Hawai’i, Israel and elsewhere.

Still, amid economic uncertainty and inflation, last fiscal year, San Diego Foundation (SDF) donors and partners granted more than $130 million to over 2,500 nonprofits, while also contributing more than $200 million to (SDF) charitable funds.

As the sobering data in the San Diego Foundation Economic Equity Report reveals, however, ongoing support is critical to address the disparities and inequalities in our region.

As we navigate these challenges together, the holiday season takes on added significance. With nearly one-third of annual giving occurring in November and December, philanthropy plays a critical role during this time of year.

In the spirit of the Season of Giving, the SDF philanthropic team shares three impactful ways to contribute and make a difference before 2023 ends.

1. Discover Local Nonprofits to Support
If you lack knowledge of which nonprofit organization(s) to support, it may be hard to know where to start. The good news is, this holiday season, SDF published a new Nonprofit Year-End Giving Guide so you can discover and support nonprofits that align with your giving interests.

This guide will help you discover local organizations that may be unfamiliar but are working to address our region’s greatest needs, uplifting small, grassroots community organizations led by people of color, vetted by the SDF team, and positively impacting the lives of San Diegans.

Access the guide at

2. Give the Gift(s) You Want
Giving cash directly to a nonprofit organization, donor-advised fund (DAF), or community initiative enables you to claim a tax deduction of up to 60% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) if you plan to itemize your 2023 tax deductions.

You can choose to donate other types of assets, as well.

For example, direct gifts of long-term, appreciated securities, including publicly traded stock, publicly traded bonds, and mutual fund shares, offer important advantages.

The full fair market value of your gift is deductible as a charitable contribution up to 30% of your AGI each year when you itemize deductions. Also, you eliminate the capital gains tax you would incur if you sold the assets and donated the after-tax proceeds, which could increase the amount available for charity by up to 20%.

Other assets to donate include Qualified Charitable Distributions (QCDs) from IRAs, business interests and privately-held stock, and more complex gifts like real estate. Contact the  [email protected] to learn more about assets you can give this holiday season.

3. Set up a Recurring Gift
Recurring gifts are a great way to go beyond making a one-time donation during the holiday season. Consider checking the box on that nonprofit donation form to make your gift recurring for 2024.

When you make a recurring gift to San Diego Foundation, you become a San Diego Sustainer. Your gift consistently supports San Diegans who need help the most for just, equitable and resilient communities in our region. Sustainers drive change across three key pillars:

  1. Advancing racial and social justice
  2. Fostering equity of opportunity
  3. Building resilient communities

Learn more and set up your gift today at

To learn more about how you can increase your charitable giving this holiday season or open a donor-advised fund to maximize your impact, visit today.

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