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What the President of Center for Car Donations Has Learned in 10 Years

In ten years and twenty-five thousand car donations, here is what I have learned:


People are even more generous than I could ever have imagined. I am in awe of the generosity I get be a part of.  The many stories I have heard throughout the years have truly touched me.


People give their cars for many reasons, but no matter the reason, they need to feel appreciated.  It takes a special person to consider donating, to begin with.


Most donors are very nice and are happy to help. Some donors just want to get rid of junk.


Tow truck drivers do their best but cannot always be relied upon, so it is important that we continue to get feedback from donors, which is why we offer a Starbucks card to them if they provide us with feedback.  Giving incentives will boost your response.

Some people name their cars and are very attached to them. Remember this when taking the donation.  This could be an extremely difficult process for some.  Try to always be patient.

Love your car


If a donor is unhappy, we need to do whatever it takes to fix the situation. Then send them a Gift Card for their patience.  Let them know you care about them, and are here to help.


Every bid at the auction needs to be watched so they don’t fall through the crack.  It is very easy to lose donors if you are not aware of each donation and where it is at in the donation process.


You never know what a car will bring. Sometimes even an old “hunk-of-junk” can bring in thousands of dollars and a beautiful car may not.


Just because a donor says their car is a gem, doesn’t mean it is.  We always err on the side of caution.


Volvo’s don’t sell for anywhere near their values.


Most Volvo drivers take great care of their cars.


People who work for non-profits are the coolest and nicest people in the world!


There is nothing I would have rather been doing these past 10 years than raising funds for such fantastic charities.

–Jacquie Elliot
President of Center for Car Donations


Click here for a look at all of the non-profits Center for Car Donations work with.