Charity Faq: Finding And Donating To The Right Charity

Published Date: December 2nd, 2006
Category: General

By: Aine Churches

* How can I compare charities?

You can compare charities through their respective ratings on different work categories. These ratings are made by various reputable independent organizations that look into different charities and their activities. You can use the ratings they have made to evaluate which charity is worth helping. Furthermore, the ratings are classified according to work category, which makes it easier for you to compare charities of various kinds through their rating classifications.

* What factors should I consider when choosing a charity?

Choosing a charity to support is just like getting a good value for your money when you buy something. You need to consider some factors so that you can decide whether you will support a certain charity or not.

Before giving your donations to a charity, you must be aware of how your donations will be distributed, especially if your donations are in the form of money. Make sure that most of it will be given to those who are in need, and not go to the pockets of some greedy individuals who are using charity as “cash cows.” You can check the charity’s track record in giving social services to those who are in need.

A charity should be transparent when it comes to utilization and distribution of all donations. It will be reflected on their complete, audited financial reports released monthly, quarterly, and annually. It will also determine the charity’s accountability when it comes to handling donations from the public.

You should also find out whether they are qualified to receive tax-deductible donations.

* Are my donations to a charity tax deductible?

Charities are generally identified as qualified non-profit organizations, as specified in the guidelines of the United States Internal Revenue Service. Such organizations, along with other qualified non-profits such as religious, educational, scientific, and humanitarian, are entitled to receive tax-deductible contributions from their donors. In other words, your donations to qualified charities are all tax-deductible.

* Are charities always non-profit organizations?

Non-profit organizations are those formed to serve social welfare, civic improvement, or any other purpose except making a profit. Most charities are considered non-profit organizations because they are operating for the aforementioned purposes without generating any revenues from their operation.

Furthermore, according to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, charities are generally identified as qualified non-profit, entitling them to receive tax-deductible donations. In other words, charities are always considered to be non-profit organizations.

* What are the different ways to donate money to charitable organizations?

There are several ways to donate to charitable organizations. One of these is through monthly giving. Through monthly donations, you can help a certain charitable organization reduce their administrative expenses and give them stable funding throughout the year. Furthermore, there is no fixed amount to be donated; you can donate as little as $5 and you can also cancel your payments at any time. Many employers offer monthly payroll deductions for this type of giving.

You can also ask for a personal donation form from the charitable organization’s office or download one from their website. After filling out the form, you can either hand carry it with your donation or you can mail it to them with a postal money order.

Many charitable organizations also accept other types of donations, such as stocks, goods, and volunteer service.

About the AuthorAine Churches is editor of About Charity, the online guide to Charity. She also writes Charity FAQ’s for PrettyGreatAnswers.com.

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