Are donations received from various individuals taxable?

I do voluntary work in poor communities after quitting my job a few years ago. Various people knows this and are paying money into my account as donations. Is this money taxable in my hands?

The amounts varies between R20,000 - R30,000 p.m. I do not know all of my supporters as a lot of them stays anonymous and just put 'donation' on the bank reference.

Most of the amounts are paid to me this way on a month-to-month basis and the biggest amount is R6,000 p.m. I am not offering a service to any one of the people supporting me and only work with the poor and disadvantaged.

This entry was posted in Tax Q&A and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

TaxTim TaxTim says:
10 December 2012 at 16:50

Can you tell me more about the work you do, how do you go out and find the work or do the communities come to you when they need you? The supporters are they members of these communities or others who have heard of the good work you do?

The Donee says:
10 December 2012 at 17:05

There are lots of communities with needs. Sometimes it is to train people to get jobs, helping with relationships, drug rehabilitation, skill training, HIV / Aids etc. To do this kind of work you just have to walk into one of these communities and you will be able to make a difference if you are willing (no special skill needed). Sometimes there will be community centers already setup who needs volunteers.

The people donating / supporting are completely unrelated to me or the communities where I work.

TaxTim TaxTim says:
10 December 2012 at 17:26

Given you answer, SARS most likely will accept that you are not earning remuneration/income and actually receiving donations instead. There is a section on the tax return where you fill in your donations amount which aren't subject to tax and you would include this there. If you are audited however you may need to prove that you are not performing the same work for the same community on a recurring basis. It is also very important that you are not paid by anyone you are performing tasks for and that the they are not connected to the person who you are doing the charitable work for. In a sense you are being given money to do good things!

The Donee says:
11 December 2012 at 8:58

Thank you!

This helps a lot.

Submit your tax return right here!

TaxTim will help you:

 Do Your Tax Return Easily
 Avoid penalties
 Maximise your refund

Tim uses your answers to complete your income tax return instantly and professionally, with everything filled in in the right place.

Let Tim submit your tax return direct to SARS in just a few clicks!

Get started

Blog Categories

Ask TaxTim

Got a question you want answered about tax?

Visit our helpdesk →

Get SARS Tax Deadlines in your Inbox
We'll tell you when you need to file, along with tax tips and updates.