Donations Policy and Procedures


This policy covers all public and private sector donations, gifts and grants (“Donations”) made to Hawk Mountain Sanctuary (“HMS”), except for endowment Donations. It applies to HMS, all of its departments, and any future entities operating directly or indirectly under the direction or control of HMS.



The Development Office of HMS is charged with the responsibility of managing and obtaining all public and private sector donations that provide financial support for the programs, projects and long-term growth of HMS. This Office is the central coordinating office for all HMS fundraising solicitations, and for the acknowledgment and recording of all financial and in-kind donations.

The Development Office also serves as the primary liaison to all HMS departments. As such, all donations received by any HMS department will be promptly transferred to the Development Office so that it can deposit and administer them in accordance with the accounting and operating policies and procedures of HMS, as approved by the HMS Board.

Five HMS personnel shall constitute the Development Office and consist of those individuals holding the following HMS positions: the President, the Director of Advancement, the Manager of Membership, the Director of Communications & Grants, and a Development Assistant designated by the Development Office.

The Development Office is specifically responsible for:

  1. the acknowledgment and recording of all public and private sector financial and in-kind Donations to HMS and/or its departments;
  2. all fundraising solicitations and special events held in the name of HMS or its        departments;
  3. the maintenance of a database holding all donor gift records;
  4. the development and implementation of annual giving programs, major gifts, mail campaigns, planned and deferred giving programs, special project and giving programs, etc.

The Development Office will also seek to work with the Board of Directors and other HMS departments, including Public Relations and Marketing, to promote and improve efforts made to obtain donations and thereby enhance private and public sector donations made to HMS.


This policy is to be administered by the Development Office in conjunction with the Office of the President of HMS (the “President”).


All HMS requests seeking financial Donations and/or in-kind services must be submitted in advance via e-mail or other document to the Development Office for approval. The President shall have final approval for requests greater than or equal to $5,000. The Development Office shall have final approval for amounts less than $5,000, unless the President delegates responsibility to it for specific requests greater than $5,000.

Each request seeking approval should include a brief description of the project for which funding is sought or offered, the amount of funding, the nature of in-kind services, the reliance (if any) on HMS resources, and if available, the prospective donor(s) to be approached.

Requests to seek financial support from Federal or State government organizations, or national agencies shall be exempt from this approval requirement, and instead require the approval of the President and adherence to the applicable grant application procedures.

Before any Donation request is made, all personnel will use their best efforts on an on-going basis to coordinate with the Development Office and to share information in order to eliminate conflicting, dual or competing solicitations. This policy also applies to community fundraising events.

a. Inquiries - All inquiries for making a donation to HMS will be directed to the Development Office, unless agreed otherwise.

b. By Mail - If a donation is received by mail, the donation and any correspondence accompanying the gift will be sent to the Development Office. Cash gifts must be hand delivered to the Development Office.

c. Acknowledgments - All donations will be acknowledged by the Development Office or, as appropriate, under the President’s signature. The acknowledgment letters will contain all of the components required by IRS regulations regarding the substantiation of charitable contributions and the disclosure of “quid pro quo” regulations. If the donation is restricted to a departmental or project account, the department and/or individual who will benefit from the donation will be subsequently informed. The department or individual is also expected to express its appreciation to the donor in addition to any other HMS acknowledgment.

a. Unrestricted Donations
All unrestricted donations received for the benefit of HMS will be deposited into a central unrestricted operating account of HMS. This account will be maintained under the HMS Board's control, consistent with the annual budget process.

b. Restricted Donations
All donations received that are restricted for use will be deposited into an appropriate restricted account of HMS and not co-mingled with operating or endowment funds. These funds may be invested with all other investment funds of HMS. There will be a 10% Related Cost Fee (the “Fee”) charged against all restricted donations, unless the Chairman or President waives this requirement . The proceeds of the Fee will be deposited into a designated Related Costs account for tracking purposes.

HMS recognizes that new initiatives and projects also create additional costs to the organization from a variety of areas including, but not limited to, the incremental staff support services that are normally required.  These additional costs, defined as “related costs,” are what the Fee will cover.

Regarding grants, HMS will seek full cost reimbursement consistent with the provisions of the grant application; if these costs are explicitly prohibited or restricted by the sponsor for all applicants on a uniform basis, and if HMS obtains the sponsor’s policy in writing, no cost reimbursement will be sought.


This Policy and Procedure will be distributed to all Directors and Managers, who will responsible for communicating HMS Donation Policy and Procedures to pertinent staff.


Submitted on June 17, 2015 to the Board of Directors for review, revision and final approval by:

Jerry Regan
Pamela Vargas
Houston Stebbins
Christina Clayton