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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.

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Friday, February 9, 2018

Get the Most Out of Your Charity Navigator Account

These days, it feels like every site we visit requires us to make an account. 

Want to order lunch? Log in. 
Want to buy new shoes? Log in.
Want to schedule an appointment? Two-factor log in.

And let’s not even get into creating and remembering passwords for all of those accounts.

In our online world of login overload why would anyone bother to create an optional Charity Navigator account? Because it’s a simple way to start doing more with your charitable giving.

You’ve done it! Or, maybe you did it long ago and forgot. Either way, you created a Charity Navigator account and you are all set to start doing more with your charitable giving. So, what do you need to know to get started? We’re going to break it down for you...

When you log in to your Charity Navigator account you will be greeted in the upper-right corner of the website… “Welcome, You” 

You should see this in the upper-right corner of your screen once you've logged in.

To the right of that greeting you’ll see three links: “My Charities”, “My Account”, “Sign Out”, and “Giving Basket.” Today we’re going to spend some time reviewing what you’ll find under the “My Account” link.

You should see this page after you click on "My Account."

My Charities
View, update, and compare the list of charities you are following

You’ve found your way to Charity Navigator, and hopefully to one of our charity rating profiles, because you want to learn more. Perhaps you heard about an organization doing interesting work in the news. Maybe an organization you haven’t heard of sent you a letter requesting a donation. Or, maybe you’ve supported an organization for years and you want to check in on their performance before making your annual gift. Whatever the reason, Charity Navigator is here to help you give confidently. 

As you play around on Charity Navigator looking up familiar organizations, searching for a charity working on your favorite cause, or stumbling upon a new organization all together, you can save the organizations you’re interested in to “My Charities.” This saves the charities to a list in your account which you can access at any time. 

You can group the organizations in your “My Charities” list to make them easier to review. It’s dad’s birthday again… good thing you saved a list of his favorite charities! Now you can make donations in his honor in no time at all. It’s the end of the year and you’re ready to make your annual gifts to the local food bank, animal shelter, and after school program… they’re all in one place!

And, you’ll receive a monthly update listing all of the organizations saved to your “My Charities” that have new or updated ratings. This notification lets you know when a charity’s rating has gone up, down, or has stayed the same. You can use this information to follow up with the charities you care about. Congratulate them on a higher rating by sending an email or making a donation. Or, ask them why their rating has gone down -- is this something you should be concerned about as a donor? These monthly reminders help to keep charitable giving top of mind. Be intentional with your giving, not just habitual.

My Profile
Update your account settings

Under the “My Profile” tab you can--you guessed it--change the personal information in your profile. Did you notice a typo in your name in your monthly update email? You can fix that here. Want to update your email address or password? This is the place. You can even provide Charity Navigator with a little more information about yourself. The more we know about our users, the more we can create content that they (you) will enjoy. Don’t worry--we will never sell, share, or trade this information with any other organizations or third parties.

And, we should tell you, this is where you go to deactivate your account… although we’d be very sad to see you go!

My Donations
View your donation history and manage recurring donations

You can access a record of your current and past donations through the “My Donations” tab. (Note: This only records donations made through Charity Navigator’s Giving Basket). You can sort your donations by year and print a consolidated record of past donations. And, you can manage your current recurring donations set up through the Giving Basket.

This is portal is particularly helpful as you plan your year-end giving and prepare to file your taxes. Please note that tax receipts for these donations were emailed to you by Network for Good on the date the donation was completed. You can contact our team through the Help Center portal on the right side of your screen to request a copy of a missing receipt.

We just covered the basics of what you’ll get with a Charity Navigator. We believe these features are key to managing and doing more with your charitable giving. Stay tuned for future posts on some of the other tools and resources you’ll find on Charity Navigator and how you can use them to maximize the impact of your donations.

As a 501 (c) (3) organization itself, Charity Navigator depends on public support to help donors make informed choices. Please consider investing in the future of Charity Navigator by making a donation today.  Donate now >>

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