A method for showing external constituencies how all types of contributions contribute to an organization's fundraising goals, including outright gifts, irrevocable gift commitments and revocable gift commitments.

(September, 2006) The National Committee on Planned Giving® has published a revised edition of the Guidelines for Reporting and Counting Charitable Gifts. The Guidelines for Reporting and Counting Charitable Gifts were created to provide a tool for charitable organizations to use for reporting and counting fundraising activity. They provide a structure and methodology for showing how all types of gifts contribute to an organization's fundraising goals, whether in a traditional campaign context or other reporting period. The Guidelines focus on the range of reports charitable organizations make to their external constituencies.

NCPG's new guidelines are based on what has become standard counting and reporting practice for many charities. They specify that campaigns, of whatever duration, should be structured and fundraising activity reported, in three categories-outright gifts, irrevocable gift commitments and revocable gift commitments.

The Guidelines for Reporting and Counting Charitable Gifts were developed by a task force of NCPG members representing all types of charitable organizations. The creation of the guidelines came after a year of research and development, a six-week public comment period, and final revisions.

Former NCPG president and CEO Tanya Howe Johnson said, "The guidelines broaden the counting and reporting options available to organizations, so that they can choose a sound and straightforward methodology that best supports their organization's campaign goals."

The guidelines serve to complement NCPG's Valuation Standards for Charitable Planned Gifts, which were released in April 2004. The Valuation Standards are for internal use to help charitable organizations understand the future purchasing power of a planned gift, while The Guidelines for Counting and Reporting Charitable Gifts allow organizations to report all their fundraising results and especially gift planning achievements to external constituencies such as donors, the media and other charities.

Johnson points out, "It's important to note that valuing, counting and reporting are not accounting functions. The way planned gifts are reflected in a charity's financial statements is still governed by FASB."

Task force chair Bruce Bigelow said the guidelines offer a much clearer picture of an organization's true fundraising achievements.

"Without these counting guidelines, fundraisers are in a formidable quandary-the conflict between suggesting the charitable giving vehicle that works best within the donor's means and wishes-and facilitating a gift that can be reported right away. NCPG's Guidelines for Counting and Reporting Charitable Gifts effectively quash this quandary, and both the donor and fundraiser receive the recognition deserved for the acquisition of the gift. These guidelines allow us to focus on the ways our donors can make the best and most generous gift they can without being concerned about how the gift will look on our reports."

To read the full text, click here.

To read an Executive Summary of the revised Guidelines for Reporting and Counting Charitable Planned Gifts, click here.

To read CASE Updates Management and Reporting Standards; Revisions Consistent with NCPG Guidelines for Reporting and Counting Charitable Gifts (2/5/08), click here

To read Association of of Fundraising Professionals Endorses NCPG Guidelines for Reporting and Counting Charitable Gifts   (5/22/07), click here

To read “The New Paradigm: Counting Gifts and Contemporary Fundraising,” by Bruce Bigelow and Andrea Latchem (The Journal of Gift Planning, Vol. 9, No. 3), click here.