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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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Monday, July 19, 2021

Meet the Team: My Nonprofit Journey - Zachary Weinsteiger

Welcome to our Meet The Team series, where each month we will introduce a member of the Charity Navigator team to our readers. Millions of visitors come to Charity Navigator annually, and they may be surprised to learn that we're a staff of 25! We often proudly state that we are a "small yet mighty team"-- achieving a lot with the resources we have, while staying focused on our mission. We are extremely honored to be a part of the nonprofit community where our footprint (and our ratings!) have expanded, and we are incredibly appreciative of the support received from our donors and users, nonprofits, and funders. We hope this series will be enlightening and entertaining. Click here for other profiles.

My name is Zachary Weinsteiger, and I have been with Charity Navigator for over 5 years. Today, I serve as Charity Navigator’s Advisory System Manager, where I am responsible for overseeing the day to day operations of our Advisory program, as well as the continuous improvement and development within that system. The Charity Navigator Advisory System serves as a critical supplement by alerting donors to areas of possible concern that cannot otherwise be captured by our ratings systems.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Giving Circles: A nonprofit's new way to create community and engagement around giving

The median donor retention rate for all non-profits was 43.6% last year, according to The Fundraising Effectiveness Project. That means that less than half of all donors decided to give again during the year.

The growing giving circle movement is engaging 150,000 members in the U.S., and is expected to grow to 350,000 members over the next 5 years, and move $1 billion in donations. The most interesting fact thus far is that the vast majority of these donors are recurring givers. So how can nonprofits use the power of these giving communities to support their nonprofits? We’re breaking down a few ways that nonprofits can get involved in this exciting movement.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Giving Circles: A new and easy way to discover and join global communities of giving

There are over 2,000 giving circles and growing around the world that have engaged at least 150,000 people and given away as much as $1.29 billion. Never heard of a giving circle? It’s a simple way for individuals to collectively pool their funds and decide together how to donate them. However, until now, there wasn’t one place for people to search and discover these giving communities. Grapevine and Philanthropy Together recently launched the first-ever Global Giving Circle Directory

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

The Trillion Dollar Opportunity


Last week, we were excited to announce changes to our Board of Directors leadership at Charity Navigator, including our new Chair Marie Wieck. We also announced our new 2026 Strategic Plan, which includes a new mission, vision, and values, as well as a moon shot to guide a $1 trillion dollars of giving within the next 10 years. While ambitious, Stephen Rockwell, Charity Navigator's Chief Ratings Technology Officer, believes this can be done. Read Stephen's thoughts about our efforts, as year 
over year we have galvanized philanthropic support to nonprofits making a
 difference in the U.S. and around the world.


A trillion dollars.  That’s a huge number, almost unfathomable.  Now that I scared you, let’s take 10 percent of that number.  $100 Billion.  Less scary? That’s still a really big number.  How big?

  • Uber, Square, Target, CVS all have market capitalizations around $100 Billion.
  • The GDP of 125 countries is smaller than $100 Billion.
  • The combined endowment values of the top 4 US foundations are $100 Billion.
  • The endowments of the next 20 foundations gets you another $100 Billion.
  • Bill Gates is now worth north of $100 billion at $126.  Bezos and Musk also surpassed $100 billion in the last year. 

What if I told you that it was well within Charity Navigator’s grasp to influence $100 billion in philanthropic giving per year?  Would you believe it?  And if we did so every year for 10 years that would be, yep, a trillion dollars.

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Helping Vets Still Serve America

As we head into the 4th of July celebration, it’s a meaningful time to honor the military service members who are protecting our country and its ideals.  It’s also a time to reflect upon all our nation has endured throughout the pandemic and the people who have made it possible to overcome so many unforeseen challenges. I think about the veterans who are still serving in their communities long after they’ve taken off their uniforms, such as former medics now in the healthcare industry on the frontlines of COVID-19.