Community Benefit

Donated Equipment/Supplies - Locally and Globally

Question: How should we report donated supplies and equipment?

Recommendation: When donating supplies/equipment, the value should be based on remaining "book value" — so if the equipment cost $1000 and depreciation has been $600, then "book value" is $400 and that amount can be written off at the time of donation. Supplies aren't depreciated, so the original cost of those supplies makes sense as the basis for the value. Count as Category E3. In-kind donations. When giving cash, count as Category E1. Cash Donations.

When donating outside of your community, you can count the value of the supplies/equipment and the cost of storage and shipping. Consider proportionality. What is the magnitude of the donation compared with what else is being done in the community? It should not constitute a large proportion of your community benefit.

(April 2009)


Question: When we give supplies or money to another country, or a different part of this country because of poverty that exists there or because of a natural disaster such as a hurricane, can it be included as community benefit?

Recommendation: We recommend including donations to other areas of the country or other countries in response to poverty or natural disasters. We also recommend including these areas in community benefit planning documents that describe the community you serve, especially if you have an ongoing relationship with a foreign mission or area in need. However, it is important to consider proportionality. What is the magnitude of the donation compared with what else is being done in the community? It should not constitute a large proportion of your community benefit.

(April 2007)


Question: Can we report the donation of expired medical supplies as community benefit?

Recommendation: No, we recommend not reporting. The World Health Organization (WHO) and MedSurplus Alliance have issued guidelines stating that expired medical supplies should not be donated. One of the Principles for Good Donation from the WHO states that “There should be no double standard in quality. If the quality of an item is unacceptable in the donor country, it is also unacceptable as a donation.” Therefore we recommend not reporting the donation of expired medical supplies as community benefit and not making the donation. For more information visit WHO’s Guidelines for Health Care Equipment Donations and MedSurplus Alliance’s Medical Surplus Recovery Code of Conduct, Section 3.4.3

(March 2018)

Please Take Note: The information provided does not constitute legal or tax advice. The material is provided for informational/educational purposes only. Please consult with counsel regarding your organization's particular circumstances.