Ensuring Your Money Works for Your Cause When You Give to a Charity

There’s no question But there have been a spate of catastrophes worldwide, such as earthquakes, tsunamis and ecological disasters, impacting the lives of countless people. Moreover, there are ongoing humanitarian disasters at any given point in time, with those that are hungry, displaced, or civilian victims of war. This obviously brings to many people a desire to contribute to a charity, to do what we can to alleviate some of those suffering. There is no shortage of worthy causes. The issue lies in determining which of the thousands of charity associations will distribute the contributions most responsibly. When you contribute to a charity, you need to be assured that your money is used wisely and judiciously in support of your cause. Here we have some advice on finding the best charity associations.

  1. With so many good Causes, so many charity organizations, it can be tough to know that are on ‘the up-and-up’, maintaining administrative and fund raising expenses to a minimum charities that pick up donations. A good rule of thumb: the most effective charities spend about 75 percent or more of the contributions on programs that give right to the cause. If the charity you are considering spends in the array of 60% on apps, this is still considered satisfactory. This does not necessarily mean the organization is ineffective or incompetent? it might be that this charity is brand new, or dedicates its efforts to less popular issues. In cases like this, they might be asked to spend more getting their fund raising efforts off the ground.
  1. Before you donate To a charity, request information about their company, their mission statement, audited financial statements and a list of the board of directors.

  1. Should you want to Donate to a charity that solicits you by phone, do not offer a credit card number. Never give money, and make certain to have a receipt, for tax purposes. If you would like to subtract the contribution from your taxes, keep a record of all donations made. When you contribute to a charity that is a tax-deductible donation of $250 or more, the IRS requires a written receipt with that charity. If the donation is less than $250, a canceled check will suffice for taxation purposes.
  1. You have probably Received email solicitations from charity organizations including decals, key rings, calendars and other such promotional items charities that collect. Be aware that charities consist of such things as an ‘incentive’ to send them money, and, that this technique of fund raising increases their administrative costs, thus reducing the amount which goes to their own programs. You should also know it is illegal to require a contribution in exchange for the ‘present’, and therefore do not feel obliged to contribute to a charity that uses this technique.