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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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Thursday, May 21, 2020

The Death of Conventional Fundraising

We live in a world of information overload, where our attention is constantly being seized by promotions, sales pitches, and newsletters. Inboxes have been embedded with smart technology, filtering mass emails into folders called "promotions", and telephone recognition software is making it harder for conventional fundraising phone banks to get through.

Monday, May 18, 2020

A Quick Look at Zakat — Islam’s Obligatory Alms on Wealth

This year, the holy month of Ramadan in Islam, which concludes with a period of giving, is more poignant than ever. The COVID-19 pandemic has ravaged businesses and industry, leaving millions struggling to survive financially. As unemployment numbers increase, and as social services are strained, zakat this year will undoubtedly impact the lives with a greater appreciation for many Muslims. In today’s blog, Zakat Foundation of America (★★★★) explores the origins of zakat, the role it plays in Islam, and the impact it has on society.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Navigating ALS During the Pandemic

May is ALS Awareness Month, an opportunity to shine a light on a rare but devastating disease that wreaks havoc on a new family every 90 minutes.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

How Modeling Resiliency Can Impact What Children Remember About the Pandemic

Our friend Craig Kielburger, co-founder of WE Charity, shares how important it is that parents demonstrate positive behaviors and channel resilience in the presence of their children during times of crisis.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

How to Protect the Health and Viability of Your Nonprofit

In the early days of the pandemic, many nonprofits received a label – essential or non-essential. The nonprofits providing direct pandemic relief shot to the front of the line of funding opportunities and general support, while many nonprofits designated nonessential found themselves in a holding pattern.

Monday, May 4, 2020

Why Give Now?

Tomorrow is #GivingTuesdayNow, a day of generosity.  You may be familiar with the #GivingTuesday that follows on the heels of Thanksgiving, at the start of the retail rush. It’s not “normal” to have this universal day of charitable giving outside of the year-end holiday season – but then, we threw normalcy out the safer-at-home window several weeks ago.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

How Nonprofits Innovate Amid COVID-19

According to our recent survey of rated nonprofits, 33% of organizations have experienced a disruption in their supply chain due to the pandemic. Additionally, 23% of respondents are reporting an increased demand in programs. To overcome this disruption and to continue to serve communities in need, many nonprofits are adapting and innovating.

Today, Harald Herrmann of Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County (★★★★) shares how his team is navigating the pandemic and continuing to combat hunger in Orange County, California.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

The Road to 100,000

Written by Stephen Rockwell, Chief Ratings Technology Officer at Charity Navigator. Stephen is leading the team of charity analysts, program specialists, and development engineers that will launch the new rating methodology and criteria. Read the first installment in this series, An Invitation to Experiment and to Learn With Us

One of the most important goals of our new experimental rating system is to scale to 100,000 nonprofits, from just over 9,000 nonprofits presently rated in our current CN 2.1 star rating system.  This strategic goal is vital because it acknowledges that many nonprofit organizations that are doing incredible work are excluded from Charity Navigator’s current rating system. This is due to the fairly strict barriers to entry, and the criteria skews against the evaluation of different kinds of organizations, especially newer and smaller nonprofits.

Monday, April 27, 2020

How Charity Navigator Boosts Morale

As a global community, we’re all experiencing COVID-19 together. But, we are all dealing with it differently. We each have unique living situations and are trying our hardest to maintain normalcy and keep business as usual. Here at Charity Navigator, we’ve found ourselves in a fortunate situation to have seamlessly transitioned to work from home. I’m grateful to say everyone at Charity Navigator is healthy, but, like so many, we are empathic and can’t help but feel stressed by current events.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Volunteering While Social Distancing

Happy April and National Volunteer Month! While practicing social distancing is crucial for the health of our communities, there are plenty of ways to safely volunteer amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Read on to learn more about virtual volunteering opportunities!

Monday, April 20, 2020

Top 5 Things to Remember When Making Political Donations

Before COVID-19 dominated the 24-hour news cycle, much of the nation’s attention was on the 2020 election. While the election has taken an enormous backseat, it’s still going to happen November 3, 2020, and campaigns and political organizations are still asking for contributions. Make sure you review the list of our Top 5 Things to Remember When Making Political Donations before you make your next (or first) political donation.

Friday, April 17, 2020

Now More Than Ever, The Nonprofits You Love Need Your Help

As COVID-19 continues to disrupt normalcy, one thing remains a constant: the nonprofit sector continues to provide critical services across a wide spectrum of causes. We’ve highlighted many organizations responding directly to the crisis. If you have not done so, I urge you to check our Coronavirus Hot Topic and help out with what you can.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

3 Tools to Help Your Nonprofit Navigate the Pandemic & Economic Shutdown

Like so many other non-profit organizations, Hope for Haiti is facing the reality that we are going to experience organizational disruptions, changes to some core activities, and a possible decrease in revenue due to the spread of the novel coronavirus and the massive changes in human behavior that have occurred since the pandemic began.

Monday, April 13, 2020

5 Ways You Can Support Nonprofits During the COVID-19 Outbreak

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has the world navigating unprecedented waters. Millions of people are self-quarantined at home and reading more news than usual, but between the news updates, there are stories sharing small ways that people are showing up for another.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Domestic Violence Amid COVID-19

COVID-19 has nearly immobilized the entire world. Many governments have imposed sanctions requiring citizens to remain home as a tactic to slow the spread of the coronavirus. While quarantining is necessary to flatten the curve of new cases of infections, it’s important to remember that home is not a haven for all.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Parenting While Working From Home

Picture this: You’re working from home and on a video conference call with the three C-suite executives at your company. Your agenda item comes up and it’s your turn to present. As soon as you go off mute, your child (who has been sitting on your lap for the duration of the call because she refuses to be anywhere else) begins screaming at the top of her lungs for no particular reason, except that she can. This has been my life during the COVID-19 self-isolation period. Luckily, I am privileged to work for a boss who is deeply understanding, and a company offering the flexibility that most do not.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Getting Started with Volunteering

Volunteering for the first time can be intimidating, so our friends at Golden, a turnkey solution for creating and finding volunteer opportunities, have rounded up some tried and true tricks to make it easier and to ensure you get the most out of your experience! 

Monday, March 23, 2020

Avoiding Charity Scams During COVID-19

Philanthropic leaders like Barack Obama are encouraging financially-able people to help those hit hardest by COVID-19. After the former president’s encouraging tweet, we saw a 500% increase in dollars donated through Charity Navigator’s Giving Basket. This is an important indicator, that during difficult times, Americans band together to help those who help others. Disasters bring out the best in each other. However, sometimes they also bring out the worst.

Easy Ways to Give to Charity

At Charity Navigator, we believe that every donation - small or large - has the power to make a difference, and we know that charities feel the same way. In addition to small or large cash donations, there are alternative ways to give to charity that benefits both you and the charity.

Not everyone has the means to give a cash donation, so here are some additional ways to donate to your favorite charities:

Thursday, March 19, 2020

University Nonprofit Courses Use Charity Navigator As Part Of The Curriculum

It is Tuesday at noon, and twenty civic-minded undergraduate Emerson College students enrolled in the course Nonprofit Fundraising Campaigns take their seats. In another classroom, twenty-five students enrolled in Introduction to Nonprofit Communication Management are learning which nonprofit organizations they will partner with to provide a social media audit. There is a buzz in both classrooms, as students discuss assignments, campaigns, and nonprofit organizations. This generation of college students are social justice and equity-minded and, as part of Gen Z, “The core values of the generation are reflected in their prioritizing social activism more than previous generations and in the importance they place on working at organizations whose values align with their own.” (Welcome to Gen Z, Deloitte, 2018)

Monday, March 16, 2020

An Invitation to Experiment and to Learn With Us

A New Blog Series on our Journey in Building a New System of Nonprofit Evaluation

Over the next few months, Charity Navigator will launch the first of a number of new indicators that will provide a more complete picture of nonprofit performance, allowing us to evaluate a much larger swath of the nonprofit sector.   As part of the rollout, we will launch new nonprofit profile pages that contain more data in an easier to use and more interactive format with an eye to modern design. 

Friday, March 13, 2020

When Disaster Comes to Our Doors

COVID-19 is definitely a different kind of disaster. With the increased frequency and intensity of natural disasters, we seem to have become accustomed to watching from afar – seeing images of devastation, hearing the anguished voices, donating to those in need – and then going on with our days. But this? This one won’t allow us to turn our attention away.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Spring Break: A Guide to Donating Your Time

Tick. Tick. Tick.

You’re staring at the hand on the clock inching closer to 3:00 pm. It’s almost spring break and you’re ready to pack it up and travel somewhere warm with a beach or just stay local and relax with friends at home. Either way, this spring break you may want to give back any way you can, no matter where you are in the world. Spring break gives you an opportunity to catch a breather and get a chance to donate your time to causes you’re passionate about.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Spring Cleaning: Clean Your Way to a Fresh Start

The snow is melting. The birds are chirping. The flowers are blossoming. Spring is officially right around the corner! 

Spring is a great time to clean your way to a fresh start. If the turn of seasons isn’t enough to motivate you, keep in mind that organizing your home may also help to reduce stress, improve heart health, and even increase your productivity. Decluttering your space is not only healthy, but it’s also a great way to give back and help those in need. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Protecting Your Privacy When Donating

With donations from individuals accounting for the majority of all charitable giving, it’s no wonder that many nonprofit organizations rely on you for donations. 

When you support an organization, you trust them to keep your information secure and confidential. With the European Union’s recent implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), you might be wondering if a similar law exists in the U.S. Many states have made strides in an effort to protect consumer’s data privacy, yet there is no federal law currently in place. That means many organizations may be collecting your personal information. But what exactly is being collected?

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Selfless Self-Care: How to Improve Your Mental Health by Giving Back

Our friend Craig Kielburger, co-founder of WE Charity, shared the powerful physical and mental benefits of giving back.

Every year, I meet hundreds of youth and educators through WE Schools, our charity’s service-learning program. I ask them all the same question: What issues are you most concerned about? In the past, answers varied, but lately, there is a singular, common response: young people want support to address mental well-being.

Mental health is a huge and growing challenge across North America. Twenty-percent of American adults will experience a mental illness. More than six million American children under the age of 18 have been diagnosed with anxiety or depression.

Investing more in care and treatment will be part of the solution. But mental health is no different than physical health—preventative care can significantly reduce the need for treatment and interventions. Each of us can work proactively to look after the mental well-being of ourselves and others. And one surprisingly effective tonic is giving back.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Ask a Fundraiser: Why Do Some Charities Have Two Addresses?

You may have noticed that some charities have more than one address, either listed on their Charity Navigator rating page, the charity’s own website, or on a piece of mail or email that the charity sends to you. 

This has raised some questions and even made some of our users suspicious of these charities. But, there is a simple reason that charities have two addresses.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Solicitation Overload: Why So Many During the Holidays?

You may have noticed a major uptick in the number of times you heard from charities in the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Years.  We heard from a number of Charity Navigator users and supporters asking why they were receiving so many emails and letters and what they can do to cut back. 

Often, the holidays bring out the best in people - they give back to causes close to their hearts and even ask their loved ones to make a donation in their name instead of getting gifts. As a result, many charities receive the majority of their funding during this special time of year. When you couple this with the midnight deadline on New Year’s Eve for tax-deductible giving, charities respond by increasing the number of emails, letters, phone calls, text messages, and more.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Should You Feel Good About Donating at Checkout?

Here's a common scenario: you just spent the past hour adding items to your shopping cart at your local supermarket.  You get to the register, place all of your items onto the counter, and proceed to be rung up.  Now you're asked to consider making a donation to a charity.  A myriad of questions float through your head before you ultimately decide whether or not to press yes or no.  This form of donating is called point-of-sale donations.

Friday, January 10, 2020

We Deal in Hope: The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation

Renee Parsons is the Co-founder of The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation and President of PXG Apparel. A passionate philanthropist, Renee is a member of the global organization Women Moving Millions. She and her husband, Bob Parsons, are Giving Pledge signatories.

Years ago, Bob and I pledged our support for the people of Haiti with an emergency donation after the 2010 earthquake. Knowing we needed to help, but not sure where our funding would make the most difference, I turned to Charity Navigator. It was through the Charity Navigator website that we discovered Hope for Haiti.

Friday, January 3, 2020

Reflections on 2019: A Letter from our CEO

Dear friends of Charity Navigator,

It's hard to believe that 2019 has come to an end--with so many firsts and new initiatives, the year seemed to fly by at Charity Navigator. This past year has been one of transformation and progress.

As I reflect on the past twelve months--what we achieved, what we learned, and where we’re going at Charity Navigator--one thing continues to ring true: we wouldn’t be the trusted resource we are today without the confidence of millions of users and the generous support of our donors.

Each year, tens of thousands of users show how much they value the ratings and tools we provide by making a donation to support our work. For that, the entire team at Charity Navigator is deeply grateful. Thank you for your generosity. As a small token of our appreciation, I’ve outlined some highlights from 2019 that you made possible.