The Women's Giving Circle of Howard County

Ways to Give


The Women’s Giving Circle of Howard County, a fund at the Community Foundation of Howard County, offers a wide range of gifting options and vehicles. The Community Foundation of Howard County is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a public charity. Consequently, donors are provided with the maximum tax benefits allowed by law.

Special payment options are available to support ease of giving:

  • Pledges can be made for commitments of $1,000 or above.
  • Automatic deductions can be made from checking accounts to WGC.
  • Credit card payments can be established through a simple registration process.

Gifts of Cash
Simplicity and ease of delivery are the major factors in making cash the most popular type of charitable gift. A gift of cash is considered made on the date it is hand-delivered or mailed. It’s simple and straightforward.

Gifts of Appreciated Property
A viable alternative to a cash gift is a gift of property. With careful planning, charitable gifts of certain types of assets will provide even greater tax benefits to the donor than a gift of equivalent value in cash. The most favorable tax benefits are generated by contributions of appreciated long-term capital-gain securities and real estate. In addition to receiving a charitable deduction for the full fair market value of such a gift, the donor avoids any potential tax on the capital-gain element in the gifted property and any sales commission that would be payable upon sale of the asset.

Gifts Through Wills
Each year thousands of individuals, exercising their privilege to determine the final distribution of their estates, designate that a portion of their assets be used for the benefit and support of their favorite charitable organizations. Gifts by Will have become an integral part of our philanthropic tradition, because such gifts enable a person to make significant contributions that may not have been possible during life.

Gifts Through Life Insurance
An important, but frequently overlooked, role of life insurance is the one it can play in planned charitable giving. Life insurance itself can be the direct funding medium of a gift, permitting the donor to make a substantial gift for a relatively modest annual outlay.

Gifts Through Retirement Accounts
As you make your financial plans for retirement and contemplate your estate plans, you will be reminded of the tax rules on retirement accounts and the effects of estate and inheritance taxes. As a result of the tax rules, it is important that you address this as part of your overall estate and financial planning matters. After discussing this with your tax advisor, you may realize it is to your advantage to utilize some of these qualified retirement monies for charitable interest purposes.

Gifts Through Charitable Remainder Trusts
A trust is an arrangement whereby the creator of the trust (“grantor”) gives legal title to assets to someone else (a “trustee”) who manages the assets on the grantor’s behalf. A trustee may be a qualified institution or an individual. A charitable remainder trust is a type of irrevocable trust that splits the benefits between non-charitable beneficiaries (typically the grantor and one or more individuals), and a charitable organization. The donor or grantor’s interest is called an income interest. This means the donor/grantor and his/her beneficiaries receive an income produced by the trust over a lifetime or a term of years but not in excess of 20 years.

Matching Gifts
Many companies have matching gifts programs, where the company matches personal cash contributions made by employees. When an employee makes a donation to his/her favorite charity, the company matches that donation dollar-for-dollar, up to a specified limit per calendar year. If you are your spouse work for one of the companies listed here, you may be eligible to give via the company matching gifts program. Check with the human resources department of your company for details on how you can give to the WGC utilizing this terrific opportunity.

Participating companies: 
Abell Foundation, AEGON USA Inc., Allstate Corporate, American Express Tax and Business, Aramark Corp., AXA Foundation, Baltimore Community Foundation, Bank of America, Bechtel Foundation, Becton Dickinson and Company, Bestfoods, Black & Decker, Bristol-Myers, Charles Schwab & Co. Inc., Ciena Corporation, Cisco Systems, Coca-Cola Co., Constellation Energy Group, Crown Central Petroleum, CXS Transportation, Deloitte & Touche LLP, Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation, Enterprise Social Investment, Ernst & Young Foundation, Exxon Corporation, Federated Department Stores, First Data Corporation, Freddie Mac, Gap, Inc. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America, Hershey Foods, Hewlett-Packard, Houghton Mifflin Company, H&R Block Inc., H.J Heinz Co., IBM Corporation, Johnson & Johnson, Lincoln Financial Group, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Lucent Technologies, Massachusetts Mutual Life Ins., May Department Stores, McCormick & Company, McDonald’s Corp., M&T Foundation, Mercantile-Safe Deposit & Trust Co., Merrill Lynch & Co., Metropolitan Life Foundation, Microsoft, Mobil Foundation, Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, Nationwide Insurance Foundation, New England Financial, NIKE Inc., Northrup Gruman, Northwestern Mutual Life Foundation, Office Depot, Pepsi Co. Foundation, Procter & Gamble Fund, Prudential Securities, Revlon Inc., Ryland Homes, Sallie Mae, State Farm Companies Foundation, St. Paul Companies, Struever Bros., Subaru of America, SunTrust Bank, T. Rowe Price Associates, TransAmerica Corp., United Parcel Service, Unilever United States Inc., Union Pacific Corp., Vanguard Group Inc., Verizon, Washington Post, Zurich N.A. Foundation

Donate by Shopping Online
You can also easily give through e-commerce commission portals. If you purchase items through and indicate that you “shop for” The Columbia Foundation, the WGC will receive a percentage of your overall purchase!

Send a Donation to the WGC

Gifts by check may be mailed to The Community Foundation of Howard County, 10630 Little Patuxent Parkway; Century Plaza, Suite 315; Columbia, MD 21044. Please note on the check that your gift is intended for the Women’s Giving Circle.

Donate Online
Simply click the Contribute button in the left sidebar to make an online donation using Paypal.


Donor Privacy Policy:

1) The Community Foundation of Howard County and the Women’s Giving Circle respect your privacy and are committed to protecting it. Your name and personal contact information will not be sold, shared or otherwise disclosed with/to any other organization, public, private, or non-profit.

If you prefer to be listed as Anonymous, or if you wish to opt out from certain communications, please contact us at, or at 410-730-7840.

2) The WGC’s use of information in our newsletter, website, and other published documents is for the purpose of highlighting individual donors. If any WGC donor wishes to remain anonymous or not be associated with their gift amount, we honor this choice. Donors may contact us at to assure their wishes are recognized. All other donors will be recognized in this way by default.