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Ways to help Bahamas' residents recover from Dorian

Hurricane Dorian damage_Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance via Facebook
Some of the devastation facing Bahamians following Hurricane Dorian's direct hit on the islands. (Photo courtesy Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance via Facebook)

Hurricane Dorian is still traveling up North America's eastern coastline, but it did its most damage on Sept. 2 when it made landfall as a Category 5 storm in The Bahamas.

More than 40 people were killed and that toll is expected to rise. At least 70,000 people are homeless. Early estimates of property damage are around $7 billion in losses.

Concerned people are looking for ways to help the residents of the island nation.

This weekend's Saturday Shout Out goes to the many stories on just how to do that.

Many ways to help: The options range from groups in Miami and other South Florida cities to national charities.

Details are in the following articles:

Fast Company: 7 things you can do for Hurricane Dorian victims in the Bahamas right now 

WPLG, ABC10, in Miami: Here's how to donate, help Bahamas recover from Dorian

Refinery29: How to help victims of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas 

Miami Herald: Items requested by the Bahamian government to assist Hurricane Dorian recovery 

Boston Globe: How to help victims of Hurricane Dorian in Bahamas 

Bahamas relief_needed items one-pager

NBC News: How to help the victims of Hurricane Dorian

CNN: Here's how you can help Hurricane Dorian victims 

WTOP Radio, Washington, D.C.: How you can help Hurricane Dorian victims 

WZZM, ABC13, Grand Rapids, Michigan: How to help those in the Bahamas impacted by Hurricane Dorian 

Newsweek: How to help the Bahamas recover from destructive storm 

Tax implications of foreign disaster donations: Since the Bahamas is an independent British Commonwealth realm, any gifts directly to it or nonprofits established there are not tax deductible on U.S. returns.

However, you can give to a U.S.-based, Internal Revenue Service authorized nonprofit that also distributes global assistance funds. That will allow you to claim your gifts as an itemized deduction if that's your filing preference.

My 2017 post on U.S. tax rules for international donation deductions has details.

One such giving option is the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP), an Internal Revenue Service-approved 501(c)(3) charity that helps U.S. residents donate to international needs. CDP established the 2019 Atlantic Hurricane Season Recovery Fund.

Charity Navigator also lists other groups that are or soon will be providing assistance to storm victims in the Bahamas and the United States.

I know that most people give to charities regularly and even more in special terrible situations like natural disasters without worrying about any tax benefits. Thank you for your compassion and generosity.

But it you do itemize, take care of yourself at tax time, too, and claim your rightful charitable deductions for your donations.

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