Gift aid boosting your donation

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North-based charity Blythswood Care has claimed Gift Aid on a motor-home donated by supporters last year.

Tax recovered on the vehicle, which sold for nearly £10,000, met three quarters of the cost of sending a lorry load of Christmas shoeboxes from the Highlands to Eastern Europe.

Blythswood’s operations manager Ian Matheson says that while most people who give regularly to charity understand the benefit of Gift Aid on cash donations, they may not realise that they can Gift Aid donated items too.

“The motor-home was an unusual example because it is such a big item,” Ian says. “But many more people could help us in this way.

“For example, if you donate a dining table to Blythswood which we then sell for £100 in one of our shops, we can collect another £25 from HMRC if this item has been donated under the Blythswood’s Gift Aid scheme.

“This is worthwhile for many donated items such as sofas, tables, beds and mattresses. The only requirement is that you are a taxpayer.”

Last winter, Blythswood’s Shoe Box Appeal produced 121,000 gift boxes for distribution to people living in poverty in Eastern Europe and Asia.

At home Blythswood’s Highland Food Bank helps around 4,000 people each year with a three-day food supply for families and individuals in crisis.

“We can run projects like these only because our supporters are so generous,” Ian says. “The Gift Aid scheme can add 25p to every £1 in value of your donation.”

To donate items to Blythswood call 01349 830777 to find your nearest collection point.