A simple, flexible way to support the good work you care about

A donor-advised fund is like a charitable investment account, for the sole purpose of supporting charitable organizations cared about by the individual.

Cash, securities, or other assets given to a donor-advised fund at a public charity, like Fidelity Charitable, Schwab or some other institution, enables the individual to take an immediate tax deduction. Then, those funds can be invested for tax-free growth, and the individual can recommend grants to virtually any IRS-qualified public charity.

The DAF is set up at a donor-advised investment firm; it is set up by the individual, not the nonprofit organization.  The donor retains the right to advise on which charities should receive distributions.

DAFs can be tax-advantaged in windfall years due to significant capital gains or appreciated assets (stock, mutual funds and Exchange-Traded Funds / ETFs).

Donors can see significant tax savings when they give to the charity through the DAF, instead of donating cash. They can avoid capital gains taxes and receive income tax deductions for the present value of the stock. (A capital gain is the current value of a stock minus the purchase price.) The original purchase price is called the cost basis. For example, a stock is currently worth $125. If an individual purchased a share five years ago at $25, their cost basis is $25 and their capital gain would be $100.

The gift lowers a person’s taxable income. This means that if a donor has an annual income of $200,000, but receives a $40,000 deduction from a donation, he would be taxed as if he made $160,000. In addition, assets contributed to a DAF are not included in your estate, so they don’t count toward your total estate value.

Investing in DAFs can therefore reduce the size of your taxable estate.

DAFs work in the following manner:

  1. Set up a DAF account with a financial institution (investigate to see if there is a minimum; some financial institutions have minimums, some do not)
  2. Make an initial, irrevocable gift of cash, stock, mutual fund or ETF to fund the DAF
  3. The assets in the DAF grow tax-free
  4. You make annual recommendations on gifts to be made from your DAF to one or more qualified nonprofit charities

To make a stock donation, donors will need their broker’s charitable gift transfer form. This may be available online.

Currently, Pilgrim Center of Hope is registered through Charles Schwab, Blackbaud Giving Fund and Vanguard. We are also registered with GuideStar, a nonprofit registry. If you choose a fund that does not have Pilgrim Center of Hope listed, please call us for our Tax ID number and banking information (210-521-3377, Deacon Tom Fox or Ann Gonsalves). Some brokerages give donors the option to sign and submit a transfer request electronically, while others require donors to mail in their transfer requests.

Currently, Pilgrim Center of Hope is registered through Charles Schwab, Blackbaud Giving Fund and Vanguard. We are also registered with GuideStar, a nonprofit registry.

If you choose a fund that does not have Pilgrim Center of Hope listed, please call us for our Tax ID number and banking information (210-521-3377, Deacon Tom Fox or Ann Gonsalves). Some brokerages give donors the option to sign and submit a transfer request electronically, while others require donors to mail in their transfer requests.


Donor-advised funds are the fastest-growing charitable giving vehicle in the United States because they are one of the easiest and most tax-advantageous ways to give to charity.

For more information, feel free to contact

Ann Gonsalves, Development Coordinator
Office 210-521-3377