Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Over the past week some areas of North Dakota have seen significant flooding. Here is a list of some of the charities assisting those in need:
Convoy of Hope
Operation Blessing International
Monday, March 30, 2009
Take a close look at the charity’s working capital ratio as displayed on its Charity Navigator ratings page. Often referred to as a ‘rainy day fund,’ this metric helps illuminate how vulnerable a charity is to changes in giving patterns. Those with 6 months to a year’s worth of working capital are well positioned to sustain their programs while those with very limited working capital are at risk. The good news is that 60% of the charities we’ve reviewed have at least 6 months of working capital on hand. The bad news is that 9% of the charities have less than a month’s worth and thus are at risk of having to cut programs or staff.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Earth Hour is conducting the world’s first global election on Saturday, March, 28th and it is up to you to decide who will win: Earth or Global Warming.
Earth Hour first started in 2007 by the World Wildlife Fund in Sydney, Australia. That year, 2.2 million homes and businesses turned off their lights for one hour to make a statement about energy conservation. In 2008, about 50 million took part. In 2009, Earth Hour is aiming to get 1 billion people to participate.
All over the world, cities, companies and millions of individuals are expected to turn off their lights. In the United States, Pennsylvania, California and Arkansas have been the first states to pledge their support. Many key landmarks are also expected to participate, such as: the Las Vegas strip, the Empire State Building, Opera House in Sydney, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Great Pyramids in Egypt, and the Petronas Towers in Malaysia to name a few.
How do you vote? At 8:30pm (your local time), Vote Earth by simply switching off your lights for one hour, and join the world for Earth Hour.
With the baby-boomer generation aging by the minute, and people living longer due to medical advances, diseases like Alzheimer’s are becoming more prevalent in society. As the incidence rate goes up, so does the need for a cure and improved treatment options. This article in USA Today describes some of the findings of a recently released report, 2009 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures, and reiterates the importance of continued support for people battling the disease, as well as the critical funding needs for organizations doing Alzheimer’s research. Charity Navigator rates several organizations that are performing and/or supporting this research, as well as organizations that are supporting patients and their families currently waging the battle against the disease. You can review those by clicking here.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
For more information about the tax implications of giving, visit our site here and here.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
As of March 24th, Team Corbin Bleu is leading the pack with over $3,000 for Stand Up to Cancer. Team Kyle Petty is in second place, bringing in over $2,000 for four-star rated Victory Junction, a children’s camp for kids with serious or chronic illnesses. Linkin Park’s team is in last place, with around $250 for Music for Relief. So, if you’re a Linkin Park fan be sure to head over and donate now, because in the end, every donation does matter!
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
Friday, March 20, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
At the end of this report, Mr. Diamant tells viewers that "you're better off hanging up and donating to the organization directly." We couldn't agree more!
(The story also highlights the 1-star Special Olympics Wisconsin's high fundraising expenses.)
Veterans' charities pull at our heartstrings. They remind us of the sacrifices made by our nation's brave servicemen and women. And they provide us with an opportunity to thank the veterans who defended us in our own small way. So it's especially shameful when an organization purporting to support our veterans abuses or misuses contributions from earnest Americans. The 0-star Disabled Veterans Associations (DVA) has done just that. The DVA has gotten into some legal trouble over its policy of using for-profit fundraisers who kept most of the money for themselves. Only 2.3% of the DVA's total functional expenses were put toward the programs for which the organization is ostensibly meant to exist in FYE 2007. Users of our site have also expressed concern over the similarity in their name to a reputable 4-star charity, the Disabled American Veterans Charitable Service Trust. So take care if you're looking for an honest charity that successfully provides assistance to our nation's veterans.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Among the most notable:
- 50% of those who plan to give the same amount as last year indicated they would make sacrifices in other areas of their lives in order to do so
- 87% who have pledged multi-year gifts will honor those commitments
- 30% don't know what impact the economy will have on their giving
- Just 17.5% intend to give less--and those who are giving less will give smaller gifts rather than halt support altogether
- More than 40% of respondents had lost jobs or seen reductions in their income
So, let us know--how will the economy affect your charitable giving this year?
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
St. Patrick Center
Greenhill Humane Society
Patrick Henry Boys and Girls Plantation
Each day, based on a particular holiday (like St. Patrick's Day) or current event, Charity Navigator’s experts select 4-5 highly-rated charities to highlight. Subscribe now.
The San Francisco Food Bank was recently the recipient of thousands of boxes of cereal from cereal maker Kellogg. Now that Kellogg has ended their marketing relationship with Olympian Michael Phelps they decided to donate the boxes of cereal that featured Phelps on front of the box to the food bank. The end of the endorsement deal was a result of a picture of Phelps smoking marijuana being made public. It appears that Michael Phelps indiscretion was the food bank's gain.
Monday, March 16, 2009
Visit Ken's blog to read the rest of this post.
Friday, March 13, 2009
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Then, join Ken Berger, Charity Navigator's president & CEO, on Tuesday, March 17, at noon (Eastern time) for an online discussion, "Making Good Giving Decisions," when he'll be answering these questions and more.
Pose your own question or just follow along at the Chronicle of Philanthropy.
If you've been following NBC's reality/game show hybrid The Celebrity Apprentice, you may have noticed the phrase "all proceeds go to charity" being tossed around. While the phrase is meant to assure people that their contributions to the teams will go to support a worthy cause, you may be wondering exactly which causes are being represented and just how well those contributions are being managed. So if you weren't sure who you were rooting for, maybe their charities will help you decide:
- Annie Duke - Refugees International, 4-stars
- Andrew Dice Clay - StandUp for Kids, 3-stars
- Brian McKnight - Youthville USA
- Brande Roderick - CPYC (California Police Youth Charities), in our queue to be evaluated... interested in sponsoring an evaluation for this charity?
- Clint Black - International Rett Syndrome Foundation, 4-stars
- Claudia Jordan - NAPSAC Foundation
- Dennis Rodman - CASA (Court Appointed Special Adovates) of New Orleans
- Herschel Walker - Alternative Community Development Services (dba Project Turnaround)
- Jesse James - Long Beach Education Foundation
- Joan Rivers - God's Love We Deliver, 2-stars
- Khloe Kardashian - The Brent Shapiro Foundation for Alcohol and Drug Awareness
- Melissa Rivers - Lili Claire Foundation
- Natalie Gulbis - Boys & Girls Clubs of America, 2-stars
- Scott Hamilton - The Cleveland Clinic Foundation
- Tom Green - Butch Walts & Donald Skinner Urologic Cancer Research Foundation
- Tionne Watkins - Sickle Cell Foundation of Georgia
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
My daughter and I have teamed up to create a ingenious and creative way to help charities. Through our company, Two Parrot Productions, we donate enough miles to fly a video crew to remote third-world countries (and we are usually on that crew personally) and create a documentary film for the charity to use for fundraising and education. As a production team we have filmed on all seven continents (but not to SA or Antarctica for non-profits, yet). The final documentaries take place in Moldova, Congo, Guatemala, Burma, Cambodia, Rwanda, Jordan, Romania, Ghana, Tanzania, Indonesia and Thailand.
Two Parrot just came back from shoots in Tanzania and Cuba and presently is giving away 350,000 British Airway miles (and a video crew) through an on line auction at the Business Traveler Magazine's website. What is interesting about this auction is that it will automatically benefit one charity immediately (the winning bid goes directly to the charity) but it could also benefit another charity if that charity was the winning bidder (they would end up with the raw footage of their choice). Visit the Two Parrot site for samples of the kinds of documentary non-profit videos that we've created thus far.
Why are we posting this guest entry on Charity Navigator's blog? Because Charity Navigator helped match up Two Parrot with five of the charities who eventually benefited from our grants.
-by Bill Kizorek, senior partner,Two Parrot Productions
For a more detailed explanation of Ken's thoughts on this topic, please see his latest blog posting, A Horrible Idea From The Obama Administration.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
A couple of specific complaints are mentioned in the report. First, that the relationships between the government and the nonprofits are frequently complex and multi-directional, making it difficult to keep track of the funds as they make their way through the system. Another complaint is that the status of nonprofit recipients is often self-reported and not always verified; additionally, no consistent definition of a nonprofit is used.
To improve the relevant data, the Government Accountability Office recommends that the Office of Management and Budget use a consistent definition of nonprofit in its searchable website, USAspending.gov, and that a system be developed for better tracking of sub-awards. Recommended steps include measures to improve the identification of nonprofit organizations by the agency as well as outside analysts. It is also reported that potential ways to validate a nonprofit’s status are being considered.
Monday, March 9, 2009
Visit Ken's blog to read the rest of this post.
Friday, March 6, 2009
On International Women’s Day, there is a spotlight on the accomplishments and achievements of women of the present and the past. Charity Navigator rates several organizations that have been founded in honor of women like this, for example, the Jane Goodall Institute, or Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Some famous women have also been instrumental in founding organizations that have made a tremendous impact on the lives of countless individuals, such as the Special Olympics (Eunice Kennedy Shriver), the New York Restoration Project (Bette Midler), and the Women's Sports Foundation (Billie King). While these women have had a phenomenal influence in their respective causes, and their work and dedication deserve to be recognized, we also want to point out the work that is being done by countless people on behalf of the rights of women all over the world. When searching our site for women’s related charities, approximately 180 results are returned. All these organizations’ primary focus is to aid women in some way, shape, or fashion. Their work is invaluable in championing women’s causes all over the world. From providing microfinance loans so women can provide for their families, to providing a safe haven from an abusive situation, helping women secure a job, or even providing the women of tomorrow with the self-respect and knowledge to be successful, people are working to help women. We salute the work of all the organizations that help women and girls become all that they can be, and hope that International Women’s Day will inspire donors to support these organizations in their commendable causes.