There are millions of people in the United States who enjoy giving money to charity on a regular basis. Then there are even more who respond to a tragedy anywhere in the world with a generous donation to an organization that is going to go into the area to help people. But how can you tell when you are giving money to a reputable and trustworthy charity? There are ways to look up the track records of charities and see how charities spend your generous donations.
Contact The Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a national consumer watchdog organization famous for helping consumers to identify bad business practices. These days, any charity that wants to get a good reputation is an active member of the BBB and has a profile you can look over online. The profile will contain any complaints against the charity and how those complaints have been handled. Charities that have an excessive number of complaints or do not address their complaints should be avoided.
Use Charity Rating Websites
There are several unbiased websites on the Internet that you can use to get opinions on the work that a charity does. These websites will include the good and the bad, which is important in trying to determine how trustworthy a charity may be. There is nothing wrong with mistakes, just as long as they were addressed and avoided in the future.
Check On How Your Money Is Used
Before the Internet was widely available, it was difficult to get reliable information on how different charities utilized the donations they received. But these days, you can go online and see just how much of every dollar you donate goes towards charitable work. A charity that spends 80 or 90 cents of every dollar on charitable work is doing its best to help others, but that does not mean you should cast a negative view on charities that use more of your dollar to pay for their operations. Before judging a charity, you should look into how they operate and what types of services they offer. Some services simply cost more than others, and that can have an effect on the bottom line.
You would be surprised how many people you know have regular contact with charitable organizations. A great way to get first-hand accounts of the work a charity does is to ask someone who has had personal contact with that charity. You should try to seek out people who work for the charity and those the charity has helped to get a complete picture on the quality of work done by the organization.
People feel good about donating or working with a charity, but they want to be sure they choose a charity that is trustworthy and reliable. With some research, you can find out a great deal of information about almost any charity in the country and decide which charity deserves your efforts and your donations.