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The team from Charity Navigator, the nation's largest independent charity evaluator and leading donor advocate, shares their thoughts on emerging nonprofit-sector issues and offers tips to better inform your intelligent giving decisions.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday's Fabulously Smart Donor

I recently came across a letter to the editor (scroll down to the bottom of the page to see the letter) from a Charity Navigator user. 

Here's what the smart philanthropist said in her letter titled, "How to check into a charity."
The article "AG eyes charities relying on telemarketers" [News, Feb. 27] reported that most money solicited by telemarketers never gets to the charities. I have a simple solution. When called, I politely ask if there is a website where I can make my donation. On occasion, the telemarketer immediately hangs up -- a sure sign that something isn't legitimate.

If I receive the name of the website, I then check with CharityNavigator.org to see if it actually is a charity. I can also see how much of the money donated is for programs rather than fundraising and administration. 
What a smart donor! She got it right. Just hang up phone to avoid the risk that your donation will line the pockets of the for-profit telemarketer rather than the charity you wanted to support in the first place. Then do your due diligence at Charity Navigator and find a great charity worth supporting.

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