With the giving season upon us, you’ve likely seen all those gift guides coming out online. What if you had a guide for your charitable gift giving, too? While there’s no single solution — after all, there’s also no single gift that every recipient on your list will enjoy — there are some good steps you can take to choose a trustworthy charity. When you feel like you can give with confidence, it’s easier to spend the holiday season charitably, too.
Check Their Values
Charities are generally quite straightforward with many of their values. Whether these are the ethics with which they approach their endeavors or the religious morals they’re upholding, their about page on their website can be a great source of this information. If you’re concerned about specific issues, such as internal or systemic biases, check to see if they have a plan for addressing them in their methods of delivering aid.It’s becoming more and more common today for organizations to take unconscious biases seriously at every level.
Seek Out Charities
Instead of waiting for a charitable organization to solicit you for a donation, consider seeking out charities to support this year. While soliciting donations isn’t a bad thing, it does mean that they’re allocating a decent amount of their operating money on marketing materials. Organizations that spend the bulk of their donations on the people or causes they’re helping may not have the fancy flyers or mailers. Plus, when you seek out charities to donate to, you’ll get an idea of the breadth of causes out there. Try using sites like CharityNavigator.org or CharityWatch.org for reviews and rankings of charitable organizations.
One of the best ways to help people in a way that has the biggest impact is to choose to give your charitable donation to a local organization. These groups are community-based and community-focused. Often, you’ll see them advertised in your local newspaper, too. Want to see the work they’re doing as proof? You can check it out right where you live. These organizations may also opportunities to volunteer your time in addition to your money.