It’s hard to believe that 2015 is about to come to a close. Before we watch the ball drop on New Year’s Eve, consider making a cash donation to some local organizations. You’ll not only help a worthy cause, you’ll get a dollar-for-dollar reduction on your Arizona state income taxes.
In September, I covered the tax benefits for supporting education in Arizona. This time, I’m focusing on two other tax credits: the Credit for Contributions to Qualifying Charitable Organizations (commonly referred to as the Working Poor Credit), and the Credit for Contributions to Qualifying Foster Care Charitable Organizations.
The maximum credit for both the Working Poor Credit and the Foster Care Credit is $200 for single taxpayers and $400 for married taxpayers filing jointly. That’s a total of $800 in dollar-for-dollar tax reduction for a married couple taking advantage of both credits. The Arizona Department of Revenue publishes a list of qualifying organizations each year. To qualify for inclusion on the list, the organizations must be 501(c)(3) organizations, meaning the organization has complied with strict requirements to be granted tax-exempt status by the Internal Revenue Service. The Arizona Department of Revenue further requires that the organization spend at least 50% of its budget on services to Arizona residents in need.
The list of qualifying organizations is full of great non-profits doing amazing work in our state, but I’ll highlight a couple organizations that are local to Scottsdale and benefiting children and families in our state.
Qualifying Charitable Organizations
Feeding Matters – Although Feeding Matters is based in Scottsdale, they are the only organization in the world working to end pediatric feeding struggles. Many infants and children struggle with the fundamentals of feeding – they are not just picky eaters. Children with severe feeding struggles often choke, cough, gag, and retch with every bite and mealtimes become painful battles for the entire family. By working with both medical professionals and families, Feeding Matters will be able to permanently open doors for children who struggle to eat and their families. Donate here.
Family Promise of Greater Phoenix – Family Promise rescues primarily first-time homeless families from the streets and provides emergency shelter and basic needs in a sixty day program designed to assist their return to self-sufficiency. Their shelter even includes a sanctuary for the family pet, the first such program in Arizona. Over 70% of families accepted into the Family Promise program graduate into sustainable housing. Their objective is to rescue families quickly before the devastating effects of homelessness create a downward spiral of poverty, reliance on shelters, developmental, academic, and health problems, and foster care for the children. Donate here.
Foster Care Organizations
Arizona Helping Hands – This great organization is the only Scottsdale-based organization that qualifies for the Foster Care tax credit. AHH assists foster families who have stepped up to provide a safe, loving environment for children in the Department of Child Safety system. Their program is designed to provide many basic needs for the boys and girls including beds, clothing, diapers, high chairs, books, and even birthday presents. Children are often placed in foster care with nothing but the clothes on their backs. Foster families, especially relatives of the children such as grandparents, aunts , uncles or family friends who step up to provide foster care, are often not adequately prepared to fill the needs of the kids arriving at their doorstep. Many kids sleep on the floor or sofa until they learn of AHH’s services. In 2015, AHH will provide more than 1,500 kids with a safe place to sleep. Donate here.