KIDRON, Ohio– Retailers offer special promotions this time of year, encouraging people to buy new mattresses or TVs with their income tax refunds.

Everence® would like to offer a different idea. Taxpayers may use their refunds to help charities advance their missions – and the donors can lower their own taxable income for their 2016 tax returns in the process.

Donating money directly to a charity is one of the best ways to make an immediate impact on the charity’s ability to help people in need. Charitable donations are tax-deductible expenses, which means they can reduce the donor’s taxable income.

Everence offers a couple of other ways to support charities and receive tax benefits:

  • A donor advised fund is a flexible way to make a lasting impact on charities people choose to support. Donors make a one-time, tax-deductible contribution of cash or other assets to a sponsoring organization, such as Mennonite Foundation, an affiliate of Everence. Any additional donations also qualify as one-time tax deductions. And the donor specifies how and when the donated assets should be distributed to his or her favorite charities.
  • A family endowment fund allows a family to combine tax refunds or other assets into an ongoing account in which donations are invested for the long term. A wide variety of assets can be donated once the fund is established – including tax refunds. Together, the participants designate disbursements from the fund to charities. These funds provide continuing support for charities as well as charitable tax deductions.

Everence can help people establish these types of funds. More information is available from local Everence offices or by visiting