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How to Donate a Car to NPR

When it comes to getting rid of a vehicle you no longer want or need, there are several options you could consider. While privately selling the car may sound appealing, not all vehicles sell easily. This is particularly true if they are older, in need of servicing, or damaged. These factors will also impact your trade-in value should you want to use it to help pay down a new car. However, there is another option.

If you have an old or broken down vehicle, you might want to consider donating it to your favorite radio station.

What Is NPR?

Northwest Public Radio, or NPR for short, is a non-profit multimedia organization. It is nationally acclaimed for its mission-driven, fact-based independent journalism. With over 860 employees and more than 1,000 stations that broadcast their programming and newscasts – NPR has become one of the successful news organizations within the United States. From domestic to international stories, NPR strives to provide their American audience with the most up-to-date information available. Winning hundreds of awards since 1971, NPR is able to explore complex, often controversial, issues in a fair, contextual, and editorial independent manner.

Why Should I Donate to NPR?

It should come as no surprise that news organizations and radio broadcasts cost money. (In fact, the 2018 operating budget for NPR was a whopping $221M!) This money is used to pay for news and engineering support, distribution and satellite interconnection, programming, music, digital expenses, and much more. While this is a lot of money, it is primarily made possible because of viewers and listeners like you. (In fact, 37% of NPR’s public radio station revenues was generated by individuals who felt compelled to donate!)

Donations from individuals like you make up the single largest portion of the NPR annual budget. It gives them the ability to continue to provide quality news reports and stories. Your donations also help to let NPR, and your local station, know that you support and enjoy what they do.

How to Donate to NPR

NPR is made up of hundreds of local radio stations all over the country. In Washington state, this includes stations like KUOW 94.9 FM (Seattle), KNKX 88.5 FM (Tacoma), KPBX 91.1 FM (Spokane), KEXP 90.3 FM (Seattle), KPBZ 90.3 FM (Spokane), and KWWS 89.7 FM (Walla Walla).

Whatever NPR station you enjoy, a great many of them accept donations. While not all of them currently accept vehicle donations, many do! Better yet – donating your vehicle to a NPR radio station is relatively easy.

Step 1: Verify

Before you do anything else, check with your favorite radio station to see if they accept vehicle donations. (Most include this information on their website under a “Support” or “Donation” option.) If they do accept vehicles, the will likely list the types you can donate. This often includes cards, trucks, motorcycles, recreational vehicles, trailers, boats and more.

Step 2: Gather Information

After verifying that your favorite radio station accepts car donations, it is time to gather the necessary information.

In most cases, you will need to gather several items. This includes the vehicle’s title, as well as the make, model, year of manufacturing, and the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). Color, mileage, condition, and any damage is also required by most NPR radio stations. (This helps them to evaluate the worth of your vehicle.)

You will also need to provide your name, contact information and an address for where the vehicle is located.

Step 3: Submit

For most NPR radio stations with a website, your donation information can be quickly and easily submitted online. For those who do not wish to donate via a computer, phone numbers are provided for live operator assistance. (For example, check out the vehicle donation page for KEXP 90.3 FM!)

NPR radio stations often partner with local or national charities in order to help with the donation process. For many of the Washington state radio stations, this charity is known as Charitable Adult Rides & Services, or CARS. CARS is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization.

Step 4: Confirmation & Pick Up

The majority of all NPR vehicle donations are picked up, free of charge. Once you submit your vehicle for donation – a licensed and insured towing company will coordinate a pick up wherever your vehicle is located. Upon the pickup of your vehicle, your signed title and the keys to the vehicle will need to be handed over. At this point, you will typically be provided with an official confirmation of your donation.

Step 5: Processing

Once CARS picks your vehicle up, the process can take between 6 to 8 weeks. Why? Once CARS accepts your donation, the full process has only begun. They then need to sell your vehicle. This typically occurs through a vehicle wholesale auction. Once your vehicle has been sold, however, your local NPR radio station usually receives the proceeds within 5 days.

Step 6: Receipt

When your local NPR radio station receives the proceeds from the sale of your car, they will process an acknowledgement letter along with your donor cards. This may take up to a week to process. However, once you are in receipt of this, your donation is complete.

Support NPR and Your Local Radio Station

The majority of local NPR radio stations accept any type of vehicle, regardless of whether it is operational or not. In addition to helping to support a cause you know and love, there is another benefit to donating your vehicle to your favorite NPR radio station. All vehicle donations that are made to your local NPR radio station are tax deductible! That means – you not only help keep your favorite radio station on the air, but you also get to make a tax deduction on your itemized annual income taxes filed with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

If tax deductions and charitable donations sound like the best solution to off-load that clunker sitting in the driveway – why wait? Visit your favorite radio station’s website today to find out more about donating your vehicle to NPR.

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