BOARDMAN, Ohio (WYTV) – Many charities and organizations, such as Hospice of the Valley, rely on donations from the community.

Hospice of the Valley has been providing services for families in Youngstown since 1979. It’s expanded since it started 36 years ago, and now serves families in Western Pennsylvania.

Walking through the doors of Hospice House can be difficult for families. Hospice of the Valley tries to make it as comfortable and peaceful as possible.

“This is not a hospital, it’s definitely a home-like setting and that’s our goal,” Liz McGarry said. “We have a team of nurses, social workers, we have chaplains, we have a personal care team that takes care of the personal needs of the patient.”

Donations from the community and families play a big role in what the organization is able to do for its patients. These donations don’t help pay the mortgage; they go directly to the patients and their families through the services Hospice provides.

Hospice House off of Market Street was paid for by the community, just one example of how important support and donations are.

Before making end-of-the-year contributions, charities, churches and synagogues should be researched first.

“If you are giving to a charity…not all charities are qualified from a tax deduction standpoint,” said Todd Bury, president of Bury Financial Group. “Most are, but if you’re not sure, just go to the IRS website…and you can check it out there.”

Be sure to keep a receipt for any monetary donations you make, in case you ever get audited. If you donate anything other than money that’s worth $250 or more, be sure to have paperwork for it.

“We are not a government agency,” McGarry said. “So we really rely on the public.”