How to Create a Sustainable Giving Circle
A Quick Guide to Creating a 13 Moon Sacred Giving* Circle
- You must limit your group to 13 women.
- You agree to meet once per lunar cycle (each new moon or full moon) – every woman MUST commit to being present for circle EVERY moon for 13 moons.
- At the start of the year, every woman puts her name on a piece of paper and places it into a jar (one woman guards this for safe-keeping).
- Every month, when you meet, each women gives $100 into a pot (or cauldron).
- During the gathering, share food, hold ceremony, share with each other your dreams, visions, and manifestations.
- Every month, during the gathering one woman’s name is taken out of the jar and that woman gets to take home the entire pot ($1,300).
- Continue this ceremony for 13 moons, removing one woman’s name each moon, until every woman has experienced receiving the $1,300 gift.
- When you do the accounting at the end of the year (you can do on a simple paper ledger kept in the same jar as the names), make sure that each woman has given $1,300 and has received the exact same amount ($1,300).
About Taxes: At this small of scale, you don’t need to worry too much . . . but since I am publishing this . . . and I am making recommendations: To be 100% legit, I recommend incorporating as a “religious organization.” File for 501c3 tax exempt status – you can find information on this via the IRS website. Have some documents to identify what the purpose of the group is and what your “religious or spiritual beliefs” are. Churches don’t have to pay taxes and gifts to churches are tax-deducible, meaning that if you itemize your deductions (use schedule A), you can claim the $1,300/year as a “charitable donation” on your personal taxes. When you receive the $1,300, can declare it as a “gift” on your taxes. You will want to get a receipt (a written note saying what the gift is for and how much) from the 13 Moon Circle. However, if you give to a group and then in the same year, receive money from that group, this could look fishy for the IRS. The purpose and intent of the gift could be called into question if you are audited – meaning that you may have to pay taxes on any deduction claimed. However, it may be easier to avoid the mess altogether and not claim the deduction – as ultimately you neither gained nor lost money (you gave $1,300 and received $1,300).
Women around the world have been holding these circles for eons (not the pyramid groups – like the “Gifting Circle” documents claim). A group of women in Uganda actually turned their savings circle into a bank (https://allafrica.com/stories/200709040051.html). Think about it . . . if all the women started doing this instead of the non-sustainable “Gifting Circles” (aka investment pyramids), we might actually have a transformation in our money system. Imagine Sacred Banking sprouting from 13 Moon Sacred Giving Circles!
* I am finally addressing a pet peeve: The improper use of a noun as a verb. “To give” is a verb and its gerund is “giving.” “Gift” is a noun, not a verb. “Gifting” is grammatically incorrect
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