Welcome to Charity Navigator's Blog!

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, May 23, 2014

Honor the Military this Memorial Day by Supporting a High-Performing Charity

Memorial Day is a time to remember and honor those who have died serving our country. 

If you choose to honor Monday's holiday with a donation, then be sure to do your homework to ensure your gift is going to a high-performing charity. To help you, we've published a list of charities - some worth funding and some worth avoiding - that Support Our Troops

Well Deserved Honorary Degrees!

Charity Navigator's founders, Pat & Marion Dugan, received honorary degrees today from Wagner College. During his speech, Mr. Dugan told the graduates that "your success should lead to a dedication to helping others." Mr. and Mrs. Dugan sure embody that sentiment, for without their vision and support, Charity Navigator would not exist.

On behalf of the Board and staff of Charity Navigator we congratulate the Dugans on their well deserved degrees!

Read their story here

Monday, May 19, 2014

People Are Talking About These Charities

Photo by Carlos Magarinos

Some of the charities on our site really have people talking! Read the interesting comments (favorable for some charities and not so favorable for others) about these charities: Wounded Warrior ProjectEnvironmental Defense FundChildren's Cancer Recovery Foundation, and Puppies Behind Bars.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Would You Support a Charity that Refuses to Show Evidence of Its Work?

When reporter Matt Grant from WESH 2 News asked The Foundation for America's Homeless to show evidence of its work, the charity's CEO refused to do so. You can watch the interview here.

The fact that the charity isn't willing or able to provide evidence of its impact, along with inconsistencies on the charity's Form 990, should make donors run for the hills. Especially, since there are many highly-rated charities that help the homeless that are worth funding. 

Remember, if a charity will not answer your questions, then find another that will.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Shell Charities Land on Donor Advisory List

Our list of nearly 150 Donor Advisories grew by three with the issuance of these new Advisories:

  1. Long Island Responds
  2. Bi-County Helpline for Abuse Against Women and Children Inc.
  3. Breast Cancer Funds for Research Inc.
What landed these three charities on our Donor Advisory list? The fact that the NY AG's office investigated and determined that they were shell operations set up to benefit a professional fundraiser and the charities' officers. The investigation also uncovered that <4% of the money raised went to anything charitable. 

Thankfully, there are better ways to support these causes. Visit our site to find highly-rated food banks, highly-rated charities working to prevent and cure breast cancer and highly-rated charities that help victims of domestic violence.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Be Wary of Crowdfunding Sites

We've been warning donors not to be fooled by the glossy appearance of crowdfunding sites with their compelling photos, videos and storytelling. As this news story points out, with little to no vetting going on by these platforms, they can be a very risky way to donate. That's why our President & CEO, Ken Berger, recommends that you not give in this fashion "unless you know the people personally" that posted the appeal.

A Look At The Most Generous Companies

This long infographic provides an interesting look at the most generous corporate givers. At the bottom, it highlights the fact that although corporate gifts tend to get a lot of media attention, giving by individuals far outweighs giving by corporations. Historically speaking, individuals account for at least 70% of annual donations.

  Corporate Charity
Source: BestMSWPrograms.com