Melwood FAQs

This is a short list of our frequently asked questions. For more information about Melwood, Melwood Recreation or the services we provide, please contact us.

This is a short list of our frequently asked questions. For more information about Melwood, Melwood Recreation or the services we provide, please contact us.


Frequently Asked Questions on Melwood Donations, Recreations, Jobs, Community, Business Services and more.

Business Services

  • Why do you subcontract some of your services?

    We must consolidate our energies on our main service functions and on the mission of employing persons with disabilities. We believe in strong partnerships with the commercial industries and other rehabilitation programs that may serve persons with differing abilities. The proper selection, management, and maintenance of these partnerships add depth and value to our endeavors. 

  • How quickly can Melwood respond to our need for services?

    Melwood's size, in terms of qualified workers and financial stability, allow for timely response to our customer's needs. Projects in the area of assembly, sorting, packaging, handwork, etc. can be scheduled into our routine production schedules quite easily. Melwood can be competitive with commercial companies, in terms of responses to RFPs and solicitations for work in the community. The set-aside process for the Federal Government is dictated by regulations and more information regarding the process can be found on the NISH web site

  • How do you achieve quality control?

    Our quality control programs are different for our various service areas. Paramount to all programs is a multi-tiered level of suspicion and inspection, written policies and guidelines for staff to follow, and rewards and recognition for a job well-done. 

  • How do you compete with the other companies in your industries?

    We must follow good business practices, bid with fair market prices, and provide satsifaction to the customer - the same as any other business. The fact that approximately 75% of our workforce consists of persons with differing abilities is just an added dimension to our organization.

  • How can you provide quality services, using persons with disabilities?

    Trained, professional staff that provide supervision and on-the-job training are the keys to our success. We also have specific training methodologies for varied levels of disability, function and capabilities.

Community Services

Financial Donations

  • Who benefits from donations?

    Contributions to Melwood help individuals with disabilities to earn their own way. Each year, Melwood provides job training, employment, and recreation for more than 2,100 people with disabilities.

  • Are donations tax deductible?

    Yes, Melwood is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, charitable contributions are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowable by law. Individual circumstances will vary greatly, so you should consult your tax advisor for clarification.

  • How careful is Melwood with donated funds?

    Melwood is extremely careful and efficient with precious donated funds. Please visit GuideStar and Charity Navigator to review Melwood's ratings from each of those organizations.

  • What do I do if I want a refund on my donation?

    You may request a refund of your donation by submitting a written request with the exact credit card name and information to:

    Melwood Chief Financial Officer
    5606 Dower House Road
    Upper Marlboro, MD 20772

Vehicle Donations

  • What can I donate?

    We accept the donation of cars, trucks, motorcycles, and boats on road worthy trailers, RVs, jet skis, and snowmobiles. As a rule, all vehicles are accepted that possess a state issued title.

  • I lost the title to my vehicle. Is it necessary to have a title to donate?

    Yes, all cars donated are required to have a clear title and lien release (if applicable) in the name of the individual who wants to claim the donation.

  • My vehicle has not run in years. Can I still donate to Melwood?

    Sure, Melwood accepts ALL vehicles regardless of age or condition.

  • How long will it take to pick up my donated vehicle?

    Most vehicles are picked up within 48 hours. However, options are available for next day pickup, and on a limited case by case basis, we can attempt to get same day pickup.

  • What happens to my donated vehicle?

    All donated vehicles are sent to a local auction for sale. The money is used to support the Melwood mission of providing employment and training to individuals with disabilities, including veterans and Wounded Warriors, in the local Washington DC metro area. Melwood does not keep or utilize donated vehicles in support of our mission, make material improvements, or sells vehicles at a substantially reduced rate to needy individuals.

  • I have a quick question about donating, what is the best way to get an answer to my question?

    The website offers live chat, simply click on the “Live Chat” tab and you will be immediately connected with a Melwood service representative who will respond to your question. This service is only available during normal business hours or you can send us an email 

  • How much can I claim for my donation?

    The IRS tax law changed in January 2005. At minimum, the IRS allows you to claim up to $500, or the actual sale amount of cars that are sold in excess of $500. Since each individual tax situation may vary, we recommend checking with a tax professional to determine how you may benefit. Melwood has been designated as 501c3 charity since 1963.

  • Will I receive a receipt for my donation?

    Yes you will receive 3 separate receipts. Our first receipt will be provided to you by the towing company when they pick up your vehicle. Upon notification from the towing company that your vehicle has been picked up, we will send the official letter of donation, normally received the following business day. Thirdly, upon sale of your car, the IRS 1098c will be sent to your address of record. We are required by the IRS to provide this form within 30 days after the sale date. The IRS 1098c is processed on all donated vehicles.

  • Do I have to be home when you pick up my vehicle?

    No. In fact, most of our donors are not present at the time of pick up. Be sure you clean your vehicle of all personal items and leave the title and keys in the vehicle. Our towing company will always call before picking up a donated vehicle. At that time, you can advise them where you will be leaving the title and keys.

  • I am ready to donate, how do I get started?

    There are a two options available, you can call our toll free number or you can donate on-line. Both will require you to have your title in hand. When calling, we will obtain information about you and the donated vehicle. Donating on-line is also available. Simply click on the “Donation Form” tab on the homepage and complete the requested information. Normally within hours, your donation will be processed with an e-mail sent to you including all the processing instruction and how and where to sign on the title.

  • I have a family member or friend that would like to donate their vehicle to Melwood, but lives in another state, can you accept these vehicles?

    Absolutely, we have the capability of picking up vehicles in all states to include Alaska and Hawaii.


  • What kinds of activities are offered at camp?

    We have so many things to do here, including swimming, horseback riding, climbing wall, arts & crafts, sports, campfires, nature hikes, high and low ropes, and much more!

  • As a camper, will I get to try every activity?

    Like we said, we have so many things to do here – and we’re always inventing new things, too. Every overnight camper will get to try all of the activities we offer at least once. Our day campers also get a great sample of the activities; but our high ropes course is a special challenge offered to overnight campers only! Camp is all about being outside and trying new things. However, sometimes things like the weather can affect how we schedule our activities. We will make every effort but cannot guarantee that if an activity is cancelled; it will be made up. You can be sure of one thing: no matter how long you’re here, you’ll be busy with a fun-filled mix of good old camp favorites and things you’ve never even imagined!

  • What if I feel like I'm missing home?

    We’ll be keeping you busy doing all that fun stuff, and we discourage our campers from calling home during camp. Our staff is well trained to look out for the signs of missing home, and they know how to make campers feel better. If a camper continues to miss home for more than a full day, our staff will call home to discuss options to help the camper continue at camp for the rest of the session. If for some reason it becomes necessary to leave camp early, we regret that we cannot offer a refund. We hire staff and purchase equipment and supplies based upon the number of campers who register each year.

  • What if I don't know anyone else at camp?

    Camp Accomplish is an incredibly friendly place! We are very experienced at introducing campers, and then they just kind of take over and become great friends. We see it happen day after day, summer after summer. And sometimes camp is a great opportunity to start over – without having to be exactly what your schoolmates sort of expect you to be. You make some of your closest friends ever, right here at camp.

  • What if I am missing some of my personal belongings when I return home?

    While we make a valiant effort to help campers keep track of their belongings, inevitably we have lost and mixed up possessions. We encourage you to pack older, less costly clothing items and to leave valuables at home. There will be a lost and found box on the day campers head for home. Please take a look if you think you might have left something behind. Unfortunately, we cannot be responsible for missing items.

  • I'm a parent/guardian. Can I schedule a camp visit?

    In order to provide for the safety of our campers, we do not allow visitors during any summer session. If it becomes imperative that you see your child, please contact the Camp Director. We do, however, encourage email as a means of communication. Feel free to contact your camper by emailing, and put the camper’s name in the subject line.

  • Can campers bring food to camp or receive care packages?

    Overnight campers enjoy three meals and a snack here every day. Day campers enjoy two meals and a snack before they return home. Packages are a great way to show campers that someone at home cares. Please be aware that any food arriving in a care package will be stored by counselors. We strongly discourage campers arriving with food in their luggage.

  • Speaking of food, how does Melwood handle special dietary needs?

    We try to accommodate all campers and staff, while serving three meals and two snacks to the entire camp daily. Every meal has a vegetarian option, and campers who do not like the meal being served will be offered alternatives. If you have a special diet, please let us know well in advance and we will do what we can to accommodate you.  We are happy to be able to provide gluten and casein-free meals to campers with special dietary needs.  

  • Is there an opportunity to talk to the counselor and find out how everything went?

    You are more than welcome to call or email the Recreation Center while your child is here to check in. While the person answering the phone may not immediately have an update on your child, he or she will be happy to take a message and make sure you receive a call back from an administrator.