Cash For Clunkers creating competition for non-profit

By Melissa Correa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - They've got boxes of car titles to prove their success. But this summer, the Cash for Clunkers program is giving The National Kidney Foundation volunteers a run for the money.

"It's hard to tell right now what kind of impact it's having - it's only been 1 week. It's definitely difficult to tell, but we just want to make sure that people know that there are other alternatives out there," said Amy Capistran with The National Kidney Foundation which is banking on its years of service.

"The Kidney Foundation has run the Kidney Car Program for 25 years. It is the oldest car donation program in the country," she said.

Money raised will go to free testing for kidney disease and a new program called "End The Wait."

"Its goal is to end the wait for a kidney transplant in the next 10 years," Capistran said.

And although Kidney Cars and Cash for Clunkers both collect cars, the similarities stop there.

"The Cash For Clunkers Program has very specific restrictions on what types of vehicles they will take and what type of vehicles you can buy to replace your old vehicle. We will take anything pretty much. It just has to have all of its parts and you have to have a clean title to it," Capistran said.

And this isn't a small operation. Get a load of last year's numbers. They received more than 2300 car titles, adding up to more than $500,000. And despite the recession and the Cash For Clunkers Program, this year they expect to do even better.

"Our tax-deductions probably wouldn't be as big as $4500 but you are eligible for a tax deduction," she said.

First they will try to sell the car, but if it doesn't budge the parts will be recycled.

"We take donations year around. So our plan is more cars, more money and hopefully we'll reach that," said Capistran.

The National Kidney Foundation's Kidney Car Program:

You can register your car at or call 804-288-8342.

Your vehicle will be picked up by a tow company for free.

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