Frequently asked questions
We often receive questions about donations and fundraising at High Country News. We hope these questions and answers are a helpful source of information for you.
- How can I donate to High Country News?
- Is my donation tax-deductible?
- Why should I donate to High Country News? I already pay for a subscription.
- How is High Country News funded?
- What is the Research Fund?
- What does my Research Fund donation support?
- I’ve seen taglines on HCN stories that mention specific funds or donors. What is that about?
- How do donor acknowledgments in your magazine work?
- Can I donate stock? Or put High Country News in my will?
- What is the Sustainers’ Club?
- Can I change my monthly gift?
- I’ve also heard about the Intern Fund and the Enterprise Journalism Fund. What are these and how are they different from the Research Fund?
- My company is willing to match my philanthropic contributions. Does High Country News accept these?
- I’ve heard something about High Country News being an Enterprise Zone. What does that mean for me?
How can I donate to High Country News?
Easily. One of these ways:
- Donate securely online at hcn.org/support.
- Print out this donation form and mail it to us. (Our mailing address is on the form.)
- Call us at 800-905-1155; one of our friendly staff will assist you.
- Stop by our Paonia office and simply hand us a donation. We always love visitors!
Is my donation tax-deductible?
You bet it is! High Country News is a 501(c)3 charity.
Our Federal Tax ID number is: 23-7015336.
Why should I donate to High Country News? I already pay for a subscription.
And we thank you! Subscription revenue helps us keep the lights on and our reporters in the field. But the subscription price alone does not cover the cost of operations. We rely on thoughtful subscribers who give above and beyond the price of the magazine – anywhere from a one-time donation of $5 to $100 a month. Every little bit adds up and helps us keep our journalism completely free of corporate control. That’s a refreshing reality in a world where journalism has to fight tooth-and-nail to keep alive and independent. Approximately 15 percent of our subscribers donate to the Research Fund each year.
How is High Country News funded?
For many years, our unique funding model has stayed consistent, with approximately one-third of the organization’s revenue coming from each of these three main sources: subscriptions, reader contributions, and grants (with an additional 8 percent advertising revenue). To see financial details, please peruse our annual report.
What is the Research Fund?
The Research Fund was born over 40 years ago, created by dedicated HCN readers who were determined to understand what was happening in the West. Many people have heard the story of our legendary founder, Tom Bell. He ran the paper out of his own house, using his family’s savings and relying on passionate contributors who, like him, were more interested in getting the word out than in making a profit. However, idealism alone couldn’t pay the bills, so Tom wrote in 1973 what he thought would be the final copy of the newspaper, “We have done our best. It was not good enough.” Over the next few weeks, envelopes came pouring in the mail, filled with cash, checks and encouraging words. These readers had come to rely on the information they read in the pages of HCN and refused to let it die. The Research Fund is the reader-supported engine that keeps High Country News running.
What does my Research Fund donation support?
The Research Fund supports everything from keeping the lights on and the computers working, to sending our journalists on reporting trips, to artfully laying out the magazine for print, to paying for the postage for your issues. We wouldn’t be able to produce the magazine without it.
I’ve seen taglines on HCN stories that mention specific funds or donors. What is that about?
Some of our donors are especially interested in stories about regular topics or regions. When we produce stories that fall into that category, we like to acknowledge their support. For example, the McCune Foundation has, in the past, funded coverage of New Mexico, so you might see its name under a story about arroyos in Albuquerque.
How do donor acknowledgments in your magazine work?
Every issue, we thank our generous donors to the Research Fund. Everyone who donates $25 or more will have his or her name listed in the pages. (We also acknowledge donations made in memory of, or in honor of, another person or group, and we are perfectly happy to keep your gift anonymous, if you prefer.) The time between when a donation is made and acknowledged in the magazine can be between six weeks and six months.
Can I donate stock? Or put High Country News in my will?
Absolutely! We have a comprehensive planned giving guide that answers specific questions about annuities, stocks and more. Please speak to your financial advisor, or call us with your questions at 800-905-1155 and speak to our Development Manager.
What is the Sustainers’ Club?
The Sustainers’ Club is our monthly giving membership program. Over 400 marvelous members contribute to the Research Fund each month! There are lots of GREAT reasons to join the Club:
- Donating is easy, convenient and secure and tax-deductible.
- Monthly gift provides a reliable source of income for HCN and is put to work faster.
- Your participation saves on postage, paper resources.
- Your subscription to HCN will be automatically renewed at no charge for your monthly pledge of $12 or more and you can also designate a gift subscription for your monthly pledge of $20 or more!
- You'll receive special newsletters with behind-the-scenes information.
- We'll recognize your membership bi-annually in the pages of High Country News (unless you wish to remain anonymous).
- You can choose to use your credit card, debit card, or have automatic withdrawals from your bank account.
Join the Sustainers’ Club today!
Can I change my monthly gift?
Sure thing. You can email or call our monthly giving manager, Chris, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800-905-1155 to initiate changes right away.
I’ve heard something about the Intern Fund and the Enterprise Journalism Fund. What are these and how are they different from the Research Fund?
The Intern Fund (also known as our Intern and Fellowship Fund) supports our renowned Internship program. Every six months, we hire two interns and select one Fellow to work alongside our veteran journalists and editors. The Fund pays for their stipends, housing, training and reporting trips.
The Enterprise Journalism Fund supports our long-form and investigative stories - those pieces that take an extra amount of work and travel to research and produce.
If you are interested in supporting these particular funds, please connect with our development department: email@example.com.
My company is willing to match my philanthropic contributions. Does High Country News accept these?
We do indeed. As a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, we receive matching donations periodically. Let us know if we need to fill out any paperwork or electronic forms.
I’ve heard something about High Country News being an Enterprise Zone. What does that mean for me?
In January of 2014, we were designated as part of the Delta County Enterprise Zone for our local work in training and research. If you contribute to our Intern Fund or Enterprise Journalism Fund AND you are a Colorado resident, your donation can qualify for additional tax deductions. For further questions, contact our development department: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tom Bell didn’t found High Country News on a shoestring. To Tom, back in 1970 or 1971 or 1972, a shoestring would have been luxury.
Tom had something better than start-up capital. He had a vision of the West that demolished such flimsy constructs as county and state and federal land boundaries. Tom’s High Country News wiped out those straight-line boundaries so that we could see a 1 million-square-mile landscape that is among the most extraordinary on earth.