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Donor Advised Funds

Your charitable interests focus on conservation, but you also support a variety of nonprofit organizations besides The Nature Conservancy. You like the flexibility of being able to direct your support to the organizations that are important to you and your family.

But – you are feeling the pressure of making multiple gifts to various charities, especially at year-end, and of ensuring that each gift is received and acknowledged. You have considered establishing a private foundation, but are concerned by the ongoing fees and administrative obligations.

There is a convenient alternative. The Nature Conservancy’s Donor Advised Fund allows you to manage your charitable giving simply and efficiently. Designed for conservation-minded individuals, our donor advised fund gives you and your family the flexibility to recommend support for Conservancy programs as well as to other charitable organizations.

With a fully deductible gift of $100,000 or more in cash, appreciated securities or property to The Nature Conservancy, you can create your own fund. You then recommend distributions from your fund both for Conservancy programs and to other charitable organizations, on your own timetable – no more year-end rush. You can involve family members in the process or give them the right to recommend distributions, encouraging them to become responsible philanthropists themselves.

You incur none of the legal, administrative or reporting requirements with a donor advised fund that are associated with a private foundation. Neither start-up nor ongoing administrative fees are charged. Meanwhile, the assets in your fund are growing tax-free. The Nature Conservancy administers the fund, writes the checks and makes the distributions in the fund’s name. You receive documentation of all distributions made within each reporting period, and statements on the balance of your fund.

We review your recommendations for distributions, and approve them unless they would benefit you or your family, or an organization whose values are in conflict with those of The Nature Conservancy’s.

At least 5 percent of your fund must be distributed annually, and at least 20 percent of the total distributions over the life of your fund must support Conservancy projects of your choice. The minimum distribution is $1,000. Similarly, should you or your heirs terminate the fund, at least 20 percent of the principal balance must be directed to Conservancy projects. You can make additional gifts of $1,000 or more to your fund at any time.

If you are a hands-on donor, consider the flexibility and practicality of The Nature Conservancy's Donor Advised Fund.


A donor advised fund is for you if...
  • You regularly support The Nature Conservancy as well as other charitable organizations.
  • You would like the simplicity of a central source for your giving, but are concerned about the expenses of starting and maintaining a private foundation.
  • You would like to secure a charitable deduction now, but defer decisions about the beneficiaries of your gift.
  • You want to engage your family in your traditions of philanthropy.

Return to Donor Advised Fund Overview 

Compare a donor advised fund with a private foundation.

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