Last week, a severe snowstorm left millions in danger without water or electricity. More than four million households lost power, and 13 million people had to boil the water they would drink. Electrical generators competed for natural gas that some people needed to heat their homes, and many people were forced to live without any heat in below-freezing temperatures.
Though it’s warmer now, there is still much recovery work to do, and many people are still suffering. And we know givers at NCF want to know how they can use their Giving Funds to mobilize resources for charities providing much-needed help and hope for victims of this unexpected crisis.
From earthquakes to hurricanes, to snowstorms in the south, here are five ways you can always use your Giving Fund during these critical moments:
- Give now: If you have a Giving Fund at NCF, it’s likely that you have an available fund balance for times like this. You can easily log in to your fund from your phone or laptop 24/7 to quickly recommend grants at the moment disaster strikes. Search for ministries in the area of the disaster or global disaster-relief organizations familiar to you.
- Give later: It’s important to remember that the need for support doesn’t end when media coverage dies down. As time goes by, donations slack, and relief efforts and organizations struggle. It takes time, hard work, and money to recover after things like fires and storms. You can make a difference by setting up a recurring grant from your Giving Fund to provide ongoing support during the critical months or years ahead.
- Give non-cash assets: If you really want to step up your support, consider giving non-cash assets. Appreciated securities are a simple and quick way to get started (business interests and real estate are other options that require advanced planning). These types of tax-efficient donations may help you reduce or eliminate capital gains taxes, get a larger deduction, and give more overall to provide relief through grants to Christian nonprofits and other charities.
- Give with confidence: When disaster strikes, NCF can help you avoid scams and fraud. NCF reviews every charity to ensure they are IRS-approved and ready to receive grants, so you can be confident your support is going to legitimate organizations. At times, we also provide lists of carefully selected, on-the-ground charities that are actively mobilizing volunteers, supplies, and critical support for victims. Finally, some of our local NCF teams have created lists of ways you can help, as they work with those on the front lines of relief.
- Set a disaster relief giving goal for the future: Many natural disasters are recurring and cyclical. Hurricane season comes around every fall, and wildfires are always a threat in the summer. Consider setting a giving goal for seasons of distress by scheduling a future grant recommendation for your favorite relief organizations during these critical windows.