Everything You Needed To Know About Donor Acknowledgement Letters

There are different types of donor acknowledgement letters

Thank-You Messages

These are basic messages thanking individuals for making a gift and mainly hold value as a stewardship tool.  When your donors feel that their contributions are appreciated, they’re more likely to remain involved in your organization.

Donor Acknowledgement Letters

The IRS requires that donors who want to take a tax deduction for their contribution to a non-profit organization must have a donor acknowledgement letter for gifts with a value or more than $250.

What Should Your Letter Include?

A donor acknowledgement letter should include:

  • A statement declaring the nonprofit’s tax-exempt status as a 501(c)(3) organization as well as the organization’s employer identification number.
  • The name of the donor who made the gift.
  • The date that the gift was received by the organization.
  • A description of the donation.  For cash gifts, report the dollar amount of the gift.  For non-cash gifts, the rules are a bit more complicated.  In addition to providing the estimated value of the gift, the letter should also indicate the value of any goods or services that the donor received in exchange for their gift. 

Sample Letter

Dear [Donor Name],

Again, thank you so much for your support over the last year. Donors like you are vital to [Organization Name] and the achievement of our mission. As a tax-exempt organization outlined in Section 501c3 of the Internal Revenue Code (EIN [XXXX]), every donation counts and we couldn’t have made the same impact without your gift.

On [date of donation], you made a gift of [$X.XX] to our cause. Your generous donation consisted of [description of the gift] and was processed as a [cash, credit, debit, check, etc.] transaction.

In exchange for your contribution, you received [X good(s) or service(s)] as a gift of thanks. [Alternatively: In response to your contribution, no goods or services were rendered.]

From our family at [Organization Name], we want to extend our deep appreciation for your donation. Aided by your support, we were able to reach our goal of [X goal] and achieve [X accomplishment]. In the next year, we’ll need you on our team to carry out our mission of [X].

With warm wishes and gratitude,

[Signature of Signatory]

[Printed Name of Signatory]

[Signatory’s Official Title]

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