How to Donate to a Charity in Someone’s Name

February 19, 2020
Paul Rodney TurnerPaul Rodney Turner

With so many charities in need of help, you may want to consider donating to a charity in someone else’s name.

These kinds of donations make great gifts, especially if you can find a charity that will mean something to the gift recipient.

Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about donating to a charity in someone else’s name.

What does it mean to make a donation in honor of someone?

Donating in honor of someone means that you’re giving to a charity with that person in mind. It does not mean that the donation comes from that person, but that the donor wants the donation to be associated with a certain person.

Often, charities will have the option of choosing whether you want the donation plaque/letter to say “in honor of” or “in memory of”. If it says “in honor of” that usually means that this person is still living. However, the latter likely means that the person has died. 

For example, you might use the “in memory of” line if you’re donating to a breast cancer research organization and you want to associate the name of a relative who died of breast cancer with the research center.

Is it legal to make a donation in someone else’s name?

Absolutely! It is perfectly legal to make a donation in someone else’s name.

However, keep in mind that this does not mean that all of the information that you fill out when making a donation will be their information. Most organizations will have a place where you can fill in whose name you would like associated with the information.

All billing information for the donation should be with your name and credit card/bank account information.

Can I write off the donation on my taxes if it’s in someone else’s name?

In short, yes. You can write off charitable donations that were made in someone else’s name as long as you keep the receipts and appropriate information. Tax deductions for charitable giving can vary based on a number of factors like country, type of donation, the charity you are donating to, and so on.

Be sure to confirm this advice with your accountant or advisor as your situation might require specific materials.


How to make a donation in someone else’s name?

When making a donation, most charities will have the option to fill out the information of the person whose name you would like to be associated with the donation.

 If the organization doesn’t make this information readily available, give them a call or send them an email. Charities are usually happy to make this change, since you are making a generous donation, after all!

What should the donation letter say?

If you’ve made a donation to your charity of choice, you’ll likely receive a letter that thanks you for the donation. If the website had a place to put in the name of the person you are honoring with your donation, this will likely be included in this letter.

If you don’t receive a letter, you can always write one of your own to give to the honoree of the donation.

Here are some things you might want to include:

  • Information about the charity
  • What the donation will go towards (i.e. a well, feeding children, etc.)
  • If their name is associated with anything besides the money donated (i.e. plaque) 
  • How much money was donated, if this is appropriate for the honoree to know

Is making a donation in honor of someone a good gift?

When considering if a donation in honor of someone is a good gift, consider the person’s age. Young children will have a more difficult time grasping the concept of a donation made in their honor, and will likely not appreciate it. If you do want to make a donation for a young kid, consider also purchasing a small toy that’s associated with the charity. For example, if you donate to an animal shelter, consider purchasing a little stuffed animal dog.

However, if the person is more mature and able to understand the beauty of a donation made in their honor, it’s sure to make a great gift! What’s important to consider is what charity the recipient would most like to have their name associated with. Take a few days to investigate what the recipient loves and what would be meaningful to them. Once you know this, you’ll easily be able to find a charity that aligns with their values.

Donation Sign board

How can I present the gift of a donation to someone?

Once you’ve narrowed down the favorite charity of the gift recipient and made the donation in their name, it’s now time to think about how you’ll present this gift to your loved one.

You have a few options depending on what came with your donation.

For example, depending on the size of your donation, some organizations might send you a few freebies such as t-shirts or stress balls. You can always wrap these gifts along with the donation letter to give to the recipient.

If the only thing that you received was a donation letter, you can always gift this in a nice envelope. However, if you want to make it a bit more exciting, consider designing your own letter with a free website like Canva. With free and easy to use designs, you’ll be able to design a very eye-pleasing letter to let your recipient know that you’ve donated in their name or honor.

How can I donate to Food for Life?

Ready to make a donation in honor of someone? 

Why not donate to our charity!

Food for Life Global is an organization that provides vegan meals for hungry and starving children around the world. We have an international network of 265 affiliate projects in 60 countries serving up to 2 million plant-based meals daily. We’ve served over 7 billion meals so far — which is no easy feat in itself!

With a small donation of just $20 you, or your honoree, can feed 50 children. If you can spare a little bit more, $100 will feed 400 children!

When you make your donation you’ll see the option to make your donation in memory or honor of someone, so there are no questions about whose name will be associated with the donation. 

Save lives today and donate!

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