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What happens to donations when a project isn't funded?

If you're a teacher:

The day after your project expires, donations from your friends and family will be sent to you as DonorsChoose.org gift codes to use on your next project. If you received any donations during pre-funding, they’ll be returned to you as account credits.

  • Our system identifies a donation as being from “friends and family” when that donor supports your project by using the fundraising links in your account, or if they give through your teacher page.

Donations from any donors not marked “friends and family” by our system will be returned directly to them, so the donors can choose how to re-apply the funding (which may include sending it to you for your next project).

If you're a donor:

If a project expires without reaching its funding goal, we’ll handle your donation as follows:

If you personally know the teacher:

  • We’ll send your donation to the teacher automatically, for use on their next classroom project

If you don’t personally know the teacher:

  • We’ll send you an email that will allow you to choose whether you’d like to find another project to support, or send your donation to the original teacher for their next classroom project.  (If you don't take an action within 30 days of receiving this email, we’ll apply your donation to an urgent classroom project in need of support.)

If you purchased a gift card:

  • Your gift card recipient is able to choose how to re-apply the funding.