Site Support

  • Does this count as a charitable donation for tax purposes?

    One of the many great things about Red Basket is our hope that micro-philanthropists (that’s you!) benefit from using our site just as much as our beneficiaries (“Askers”). Donations to Red Basket are eligible for a tax deduction.

    However, we know how hectic tax-season can be, and everyone’s tax situation is different, so we strongly encourage all donors to speak with their tax advisors before relying on their Red Basket donation to count as a charitable deduction come April.

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  • How do I know that the people receiving my donations are really in need? How do I know this isn’t a scam?

    As big as the World Wide Web is, we understand your concern. That’s why applicants (“Asker”) have gone through our verification process, or if referred by a Trusted Partner, through their verification process.

    The whole purpose of Red Basket is for you to feel good about where your money is going—to feel connected to another individual or to a cause, and to feel like your donation is making a real impact. We care about the safety and assurance of your donation.

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  • Is the only way to donate over the Internet? Can I send a check or cash?

    Because we work hard to keep our expenses at a minimum, we strongly prefer that donations take place via credit or debit card on We can accept check donations via mail. Simply make the check payable to 'Red Basket' and make sure to note in the memo field which individual or project you want the donation designated to. Mail the check to:

    Red Basket
    1700 Farnam St.
    Omaha, NE 68102-2007

    When we receive the check, we will apply the full amount to the person or project indicated and will mail a tax receipt to the address on the check.

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  • How much of my donation goes to the asker? Does Red Basket charge me any fees?

    The whole shebang, every penny, the entire amount...any way you want to say it is fine! We give 100% of your donation to the individual or project you choose. Red Basket does not charge you any fees for donating.

    We simply ask that you spread the word about Red Basket and encourage others to create some tremendous good by donating just like you.

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  • What is Good Start?

    It can be hard to choose where to make your donation when there are so many deserving stories on Red Basket. For people seeking help on Red Basket, the first few days their story is published can be the most critical. That’s why we created the Good Start fund. Good Start gives donors the opportunity to contribute to a special fund that is used to give an early boost to new stories. As long as we have at least $50 in this fund, we’ll seed new stories published on Red Basket with $50 to get them started. All we require is that the Asker raises at least an additional $200 to qualify to receive the Good Start grant, otherwise we’ll put the $50 donation back into the Good Start fund for the next Asker. With your help, we can make sure every Ask on Red Basket has a Good Start!

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  • Do I need to create an account?

    That really depends on what you would like to do. If you are asking for help for yourself or for another individual or organization, then yes, you do. If you are donating, we recommend that you create an account. With a verified account you can:

    1. Be assured of receiving a tax receipt; without an account, we cannot guarantee delivery of a receipt;
    2. Access your giving history for the year;
    3. Receive updates from the individuals you have helped right in your email inbox.

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  • Can I make a donation in honor of someone?

    Of course! And what a lovely gesture, by the way. To make a donation in honor of a loved one, or perhaps in lieu of a speaker's gift or in honor of a colleague, simply select the project(s) you wish to donate to, then enter the amount of your donation and proceed to Your Basket. From there, you will notice a link beneath the donations, "Make this donation in honor of someone". You can notify others of the honorarium by entering email addresses, or just keep your good deed to yourself - your choice.

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  • How do the WoodmenLife matching donations work?

    If you are a good standing member of WoodmenLife, you may be eligible for a $25 matching donation. Matching donations are limited to one $25 matching donation per Giver per calendar year. You must make a $25 or larger donation to a single Red Basket story in order to be eligible for the match. Keep in mind that the WoodmenLife match is not available through Guest checkout or when donating by check, so you'll want to create an account. This matching donation program is one more benefit that sets Red Basket apart from other crowdfunding sites, so make sure you use your available match every year and let others know you've done so!

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  • Okay...I'm a WoodmenLife member, how can I use my WoodmenLife matching donation?

    First of all, you'll need to validate that you're a WoodmenLife member.

    1. Visit

    2. After logging into your account, click on "WoodmenLife Match."

    3. Enter the information requested and click on "Save."

    4. Woodmen will verify your membership status and, if eligible, your WoodmenLife matching donation will now be available.

    Now on to the fun stuff - using your matching donation to help an Asker! When donating, you must add the matching donation to your shopping cart by clicking the + sign. Ta da! Your $25 donation has just become a $50 donation!

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  • How do you decide if I qualify to be published on Red Basket? has a number of criteria that, upon applying for Red Basket publishing, will make it clear if you are a good fit for Red Basket. Some high level qualifications are listed below.

    1. Askers seeking help on an individual basis are people who need assistance after a medical condition, act of nature, accident and/or natural disaster. You must be able to prove that you have experienced an adverse financial impact, and that the situation occurred (or has been ongoing for chronic conditions) within the last 12 months.

    2. Potential community improvement applicants are Askers who are looking to benefit the community at large, with no private benefit. Fundamental to the role of community partners and the projects they are coordinating is that 100% of the money raised be used towards the project and that the project be able to function without full funding. We believe that whatever money you raise up until the deadline is still yours, so the project must still work even without the complete desired goal amount. Projects that exist on an “all or none” basis will not be accepted.

    If the applications for community projects and Askers meet basic requirements, Red Basket will decide if the Ask is a good fit, for you and for Red Basket. Publication on Red Basket is about the benefit of the Asker – we want to make sure you are successful in getting the help you need.

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  • What happens if I don’t reach my goal amount?

    Unlike other donation sites, if you don’t reach your goal, you still get the money—whatever money you’ve raised so far, that is. YOU’VE done the work, YOU’VE marketed your page, YOU deserve whatever money has been donated up until the deadline.

    Fundamental to community improvement projects is that 100% of the money raised be used towards the project and that the project is able to function without full funding (or a private donor is guaranteeing to makeup the shortfall). We believe that whatever money you raise up until the deadline is still yours, so the project must still work even without the complete desired goal amount. Projects that exist on an “all or none” basis will not be accepted.

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  • Will I be able to exceed my goal amount?

    Yes. Donations received can exceed your goal amount up until your timeline expires.

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  • How long does my page stay active?

    Each Asker has 45 days maximum to collect donations and recruit volunteers online. If the donations are needed immediately, you are allowed to shorten the 45 days and close your story early. To do so, contact your Account Manager for approval.

    After your Red Basket story closes, you will no longer be able to collect donations and recruit volunteers online; however, your page will still be able to be viewed on our 'Completed Projects' page. You will also be able to continue to post project updates in order to thank all of your supporters and keep them informed of your progress


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  • Who markets our page? Does Red Basket do that?

    We believe the power of giving is greater in related social circles. Let’s say you send five of your closest friends and family members a link to your Red Basket page over Facebook. Each of those friends and family members, moved by your story, will send your Red Basket page on to five of their closest friends and family members. Soon, your page has gained the support of 30 individuals—30 individuals that want to help YOU.

    Because of the power of social networks, Askers are encouraged to market their own page—in whatever capacity they see fit—because most of us can agree that people are more inclined to give to people or projects they have a personal connection to. And what’s more personal than YOUR community giving to YOU?

    We, in turn, market the Red Basket web site through social media channels, advertising and involvement in community events.

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  • How many times can I be published on Red Basket? Is there a limit?

    In the spirit of fairness and providing opportunity to others, there is a limit. An individual or family is allowed three Asks (published stories on in one 12-month period with a total of four Asks per individual or family in a lifetime.

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  • Can I recommend someone else to receive help through Red Basket?

    Certainly! Many people like you want to help in any way possible when someone is struggling, and often an individual or family in crisis are not able to seek help because they are overwhelmed with their fight to get through each day.

    That is why Red Basket has an Advocate role created just for you. To submit an application on behalf of another person, you must get their permission by having them complete the Advocate Designation form. We will only work with the willing, and since this makes their story very public, it is important to understand if they want the type of help Red Basket can provide!

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  • Does WoodmenLife provide the funding for my need?

    WoodmenLife generously provides the funds to maintain the website and cover the financial processing fees, but they do not provide the funding or donations for your request. Your own network of friends, family, co-workers, church members, etc. and their networks, are the source of your funding. It is critical that you are able to tap into that network to tell them about the need, and generate the donations through links to your story. The Red Basket website provides an easy way for you to tell people about your need, to share the story with a wider network, and an easy, fee-free way to collect donations. Red Basket is truly unique among crowdfunding websites in that a) we do not charge a fee; and b) donations are tax-deductible.

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  • Will I be taxed on the charitable donation I receive?

    Red Basket is a 501(c)(3) public charity. It is Red Basket's general position that grants are not taxable to the recipient. As part of the application process, you will need to provide proof of a financial hardship, and for disbursement of funds, provide substantiation of expenditures.

    We cannot give tax advice and we encourage anyone to meet with their tax advisor regarding the taxability of any grants received.

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  • Can I submit an application if I have a campaign published on a different crowdfunding website?

    Red Basket and other crowdfunding authorities have found that applying for help through multiple crowdfunding sites can be counterproductive. If you have already created a fundraising campaign on another website and have started raising money, please consider sticking with one project. If you decide that you would like your story published on Red Basket, it is a good idea to end your other campaign first. That way your donors won't be confused about where to donate. Keep in mind that unlike most crowdfunding sites, 100% of the money donated through Red Basket goes to you, the Asker. Donations are generally not considered taxable income to the Asker. Crowdfunding Academy published a great article that is useful for helping you decide:

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  • When will I receive the money that was donated to me? How will I get it?

    You will receive the money that was donated when your project closes. Please give us 5-7 business days from the time your project closes to process your donations. We’ll send the money to you through an ACH transfer (like a direct deposit), a paper check, or a prepaid card. Your account manager will discuss the details with you. For the ACH transfer, we'll need you to submit a voided check or a statement from your bank so we know your account number and routing number.

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  • I have raised some funds outside of Red Basket. How do I apply these donations to my Red Basket story?

    If you have received some donations from other fundraising efforts outside of Red Basket, it is a good idea to apply these funds to your Red Basket story. Research has proven that donors are more likely to support a story that is successful and has several donors than they are to support one that appears to be less successful. When you have money available from other fundraising efforts, simply apply it to your Red Basket story by making a lump sum donation to your Red Basket story online or by mailing us a check. If you make the donation online, please note that Red Basket will email a receipt after the donation is made. That standard receipt will include language about the tax deductibility of the donation. Since your fundraising efforts could include dollars from differing sources/individuals, you should consult your tax adviser on the tax deductibility of the donation.

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  • Can I receive donations after my story has closed?

    In order to decrease our operating costs and processing fees, we encourage you to do your best to receive all of your donations online while your Red Basket story is still open. However, if you know of someone who would like to donate after your story closes, they may donate via a check made payable to Red Basket. The check must be mailed to Red Basket, 1700 Farnam Street, Omaha, NE 68102-2007. Make certain that the check indicates in the memo field which Red Basket story it is to be donated to.

    Donations from individuals will only be accepted up to three months after your story closes. There is no time limit on donations from matching funds, but again, we encourage you to try to get matching donations to Red Basket while your story is still open or shortly after it closes.

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  • How much does it cost for me to use Red Basket?

    It won’t cost you anything but your time and effort to spread the word about your Red Basket story. Red Basket does not charge any platform fees or set up fees nor do we take a percentage deduction from the money you raise. It’s free for you AND it’s free for the people who donate to your story. That’s right…it doesn’t cost a dime to use Red Basket plus you get to keep every penny you raise!

    Please don’t keep this good news to yourself! All we ask is that you help us spread the word about Red Basket so that we can continue to help others just like you.

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  • What should I consider before I start my Red Basket fundraising campaign?

    We’ve been around a while now, so we’ve seen some common things that tend to make Red Basket stories successful. Here are a three quick questions to ask yourself before you start a Red Basket campaign:

    1. Am I willing to share my story or recruit someone to act as my advocate? You can’t simply put up your Red Basket campaign and expect random people to support you. You must be willing to share your story and continue to actively do so throughout your entire campaign. If you’re not willing to share your own story, then it’s critical that you appoint someone to act as your Red Basket advocate.

    2. How will I market my Red Basket story? Now is the time to start thinking about how you will spread the word about your Red Basket story and which networks you will tap into for support. Brainstorm a list of ideas now so that you can actively start promoting your Red Basket story before it is even published.

    3. Have I already done a fundraising campaign on a different online site? Experience has proven that applying for help on multiple crowdfunding sites is counterproductive. If you’ve already done (or are currently doing) a fundraising campaign on a different crowdfunding site, consider shutting it down and focusing solely on your Red Basket campaign. If you must keep both of them going, make sure that you set a reasonable fundraising goal and think about which new networks you will tap into for support.

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  • My project has been published but now I want to change my goal. Can I?

    Yes, you can change your goal! You may change your goal one time during your campaign. When thinking of a new goal, please be realistic about what your community can support. Your new goal should represent a real financial need as you will need to document how you spent all of the money raised on Red Basket. If you want to change your goal, simply contact your Red Basket account manager.

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  • What projects don’t qualify for publication on Red Basket?

    We’d love to help everyone, but because of our non-profit registration we can only help individuals who have a demonstrated financial need due to a medical condition, accident, or act of nature. Community improvement projects must be accessible to and benefit the general public. That means that there are certain situations that don’t fit our qualifications.

    We are definitely dog people but we can’t pay for your pup’s vet bill. We can’t cover final expenses such as funerals or gravestones, or your daily bills after the loss of a loved one. We can’t help you collect donations to give to a different non-profit, such as raising money through a fun run, unless this non-profit has a specific need and has signed off on your fundraiser. We can’t send you on an international mission trip because community projects are limited to benefiting communities within the United States. We also can’t help you fundraise to put on a fundraiser…try saying that three times fast! No fundraising for college tuition…or to send you on a cruise. We know, we’re sad about that one too.

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  • What affiliation does Red Basket have with WoodmenLife?

    Red Basket is the brainchild of Colleen Maciejewski, who has served as a WoodmenLife associate for over 22 years. Colleen’s heart for innovative giving combined with Woodmen’s 120 years of successful community service and outreach has created a company that, we think, does tremendous good.

    WoodmenLife not only houses Red Basket—giving us the creative space to do what we do—but also provides funding for Red Basket’s administrative fees. That way, 100% of your donation goes to the individual or project you choose.

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  • Where is Red Basket available?

    Red Basket is able to feature stories from anywhere in the United States. From the smallest farming community in rural Kansas to the bright lights and city streets of New York City, Red Basket is open and ready to help. We’d like to see our organization continue to grow and help individuals across the country and we need your support to make it happen. You can help by donating now, and by spreading the word to everyone you know.

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  • What qualifies as a medical condition or situation?

    A medical condition or situation is any injury, disease, or illness that can be verified by a physician or medical records. The incident must have occurred (or has been ongoing for chronic conditions) in the past 12 months. The Asker must show an adverse impact this situation has had on their lives.

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  • What qualifies as a “disaster” or “act of nature”?

    A disaster or act of nature is any fire, storm, flood, wind, snow, hail, tornado, hurricane, earthquake or other disaster that occurs due to nature, weather conditions or conditions outside of an individual’s control. The incident must have occurred in the past 12 months. The Asker must show an adverse impact this situation has had on their lives.

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  • What sort of qualifications are there for something to be a community improvement project?

    To qualify as a community improvement project, the project must be accessible to and benefit the general public. This can include purchasing equipment for a community center that is open to everyone in a given neighborhood or town, refurbishing a park or playground, creating a literacy program or other projects that impact a larger population within a community. Projects like purchasing equipment for a club meeting space that is only open to members of that club or raising money to send high school students to an academic competition are not eligible.

    Fundamental to community improvement projects is that 100% of the money raised be used towards the project and that the project is able to function without full funding (or a private donor is guaranteeing to makeup the shortfall). We believe that whatever money you raise up until the deadline is still yours, so the project must still work even without the complete desired goal amount. Projects that exist on an “all or none” basis will not be accepted.

    While we love that you are passionate about the world in which we live, projects that are political in nature, promote or oppose pending legislation, or endorse or oppose a political candidate are not appropriate for Red Basket. Red Basket may not be used for the purchase of tickets to fundraising events, for contributions to larger capital campaigns, or other ongoing general fundraising efforts.

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  • What is a Trusted Partner? What is their role? How do I become one?

    A Trusted Partner is a non-profit or government organization that wishes to partner with Red Basket for referrals of individuals in need. Organizations such as non-profit hospitals, homeless shelters and human services, for example would have the opportunity to refer potential Askers to Red Basket for help with their financial needs to assist with medical bills or recovering from an act of nature, disaster or accident. The Trusted Partner will receive recognition if and when a client’s project is published on Red Basket, on the Ask project page.

    To become a Trusted Partner, you must complete our Trusted Partner Agreement. Once you have submitted the application, Red Basket will review it and will contact you in 5-10 business days. If our review will take longer than expected, you will be notified. Red Basket cares immensely about the role of our Trusted Partners—we want to make sure that the partnership will be a good fit with GREAT impact.

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  • Who should I contact if there are problems with my page (linking, loading, etc.)?

    We are sorry that you are experiencing some problems with your page and will do everything in our power to fix the inconsistencies.

    To file a report to have a Red Basket support associate look at your issue, please e-mail

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  • What Does the Name "Red Basket" Mean?

    After some intense brainstorming, usually aided by chocolate consumption, we decided that “Red Basket” was the name that best fit our organization because of what these two words represent. The color red symbolizes courage and honor, as well as action and vitality. And, a basket has been the symbol of community throughout history.

    In ancient Egypt a basket was the hieroglyphic symbol for “all,” or “everything.” A basket has also symbolized abundance in current times - and we believe we are blessed with an abundance of resources. We see great things happen when communities come together to help people in need.

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  • Is Red Basket a non-profit organization? What is Red Basket's EIN?

    Yes, Red Basket is registered with the IRS as a 501c3 non-profit organization. Our EIN is 45-4412276.

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  • What is the Good Deeds Community?

    The Good Deeds Community is a way for you to engage with Red Basket and to be recognized for the good you do through sharing Red Basket with your online friends. And best of all, it helps raise awareness for the story on Red Basket that you've chosen to support.

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  • How does the Good Deeds Community work?

    When you share a story on our website through clicking on a link, like the Facebook, Twitter or email icons, we give your link a unique identifier. When any of your friends click on the link on your Facebook page, tweet or email, we can then credit you with bringing another individual into the Red Basket fold, to become a part of our Good Deeds Community. You'll earn badges for sharing Red Basket with your friends and you'll be the envy of all of them when you earn the top prize of Team Captain. Visit the Community page to learn more and get started sharing!

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  • Who is a part of the Good Deeds Community?

    People in the Good Deeds Community are people who give back and who are connectors - bringing in twice, three times or tenfold the amount of good that they contribute on their own.

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  • How do I find information about Red Basket's governing documents, conflict of interest policy or financial statements?

    These documents are available upon request. For more information, email

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  • What are Red Basket's fees?

    Red Basket has NO FEES. Period. Thanks to WoodmenLife's mission to expand their community giving efforts, they not only give us the creative space to do what we do, but they also provide funding for our administrative fees and operating costs. That way, Red Basket can operate as a crowdfunding platform that is completely free of any fees both to those raising money and to those donating it.

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  • What is a Good Deeds Card? How do I get one?

    Good Deeds Cards are gift cards that allow you to give someone else the opportunity to make a difference in the life of a Red Basket Asker. To purchase a Good Deeds Card, click the 'Want to Give a Gift? Give a Good Deeds Card' link on the Give page. Then choose the amount, recipient(s) and delivery method. Next, just check out and you're on your way to spreading tremendous good!

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  • How are Good Deeds Cards delivered?

    You can choose to print your Good Deeds Cards right away, email them to yourself, or email them directly to the recipient with a gift message. Postal delivery is not available at this time.

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  • How do I redeem a Good Deeds Card?

    Simply sign in to, or create an account if this is your first time visiting us. Choose a story (or stories) that speak to you and enter the amount you wish to donate. When it's time to check out, click 'Redeem Good Deeds Card' and enter the code on your card. Any remaining balance will be stored in your account and is available for future donations. Click your name in the top right corner to view your Good Deeds Card balance, get updates on the stories you've supported, and much more.

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  • Do Good Deeds Cards Expire?

    Yes, Good Deeds Cards expire 12 months after purchase. If unused funds remain, Red Basket will contribute them to a story at our discretion.

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