What is a donor-advised fund?

A donor-advised fund (DAF) is a type of giving program that allows you to combine the most favorable tax benefits with the flexibility to easily support your favorite charities. An increasingly popular charitable vehicle, DAFs are an excellent way to both simplify your charitable giving and facilitate your strategic philanthropic goals.

How does it work?

  1. Establish your DAF by making an irrevocable, tax-deductible donation to a public charity that sponsors a DAF program
  2. Advise the investment allocation of the donated assets (any investment growth is tax-free)
  3. Recommend grants to qualified public charities of your choice

What are the main advantages of a donor-advised fund?

  • Simplicity – The DAF sponsor handles all record-keeping, disbursements, and tax receipts.
  • Flexibility – Timing of your tax deduction can be separate from your charitable decision making.
  • Tax-efficiency– Contributions are tax-deductible and any investment growth in the DAF is tax-free. It is also easy to donate long term appreciated securities, eliminating capital gains taxes and allowing you to support multiple charities from one block of stock.
  • Family legacy – A DAF is a powerful way to build or continue a tradition of family philanthropy.
  • No start-up costs – There is no cost to establish a donor-advised fund. However, an initial minimum charitable contribution is often required to establish a DAF (typically $5,000 or more).*
  • No transaction fees – Once approved, 100% of your recommended grant goes to your qualified public charity of choice.*
  • Privacy if desired – Donors may choose to remain anonymous to the grant recipient.

* Sponsoring organizations generally assess an administrative fee on the assets in a DAF. These fees vary by sponsoring organization.

If you have already benefited from the immediate tax deductions offered by donor-advised funds (DAF), you should know that Cardinal Ritter Senior Services is an IRS-qualified public charity, and thus is eligible to receive contributions from your gift fund. Please follow the instructions provided by your fund regarding minimum contribution, the process for recommending grants, etc.

Cardinal Ritter Senior Services tax identification number is 43-0811604

Please make checks payable to Cardinal Ritter Senior Services and mailed to the following address:

Cardinal Ritter Senior Services Office of Development
7609 Watson Road
St. Louis, MO 63119
Please contact Christine Schwab at our Development Office at (314) 961-8000 ext 1323 or by email at [email protected] for more information.


Alternatively, a limited number of DAF sponsoring organizations are participating in DAFDirect.  You can now recommend a gift to Cardinal Ritter Senior Services from your donor advised fund in this new, streamlined way.

Cardinal Ritter Senior Services is proud to provide services to improve the quality of life for senior adults by promoting and providing social, health, and housing programs and services in St. Louis City and County, as well as in St. Charles, Jefferson, Franklin and Warren Counties.

Each year, we serve over 8,500 senior adults in our community. We welcome you to become part of our mission by supporting our senior adults, especially those who no longer have resources.

There are many ways to support Cardinal Ritter Senior Services:

Online Donation
Individual and/or Corporate Gifts
Matching Gifts
Memorials and Honorariums
Planned Giving
NAP Tax Credits
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