‘Tis the Season to Donate

Posted by on Dec 14, 2010 in Managing Not-For-Profit Organizations

Even though 1 out of 10 Americans are unemployed, the year will end on a positive note for charities. According to the Nonprofit Research Collaborative, “Thirty-six percent of charities reported an increase in donations during the first nine months of the year”. Even though donation levels are nowhere near the number seen in 2007, this positive trend implies that the end of the year will see better donation levels than in 2009.

Statistics like this are encouraging, but when making a donation it is important to be smart about it. During the non-profit class held this past semester, we took at look at the various types of direct mail and solicitation done by charities during the year. One thing that stuck out to me as we looked at the various campaigns was the importance of being an educated giver.


Make sure you are certain that the charity you are giving to is indeed the charity you want to give to. With so many non-profits, names can get confusing. After a while, Feed the Children, Find the Children and the Global Fund for Children all start to sound the same. It is important to know which one you are giving to and whether they are legitimate. A simple way to do that is by longing on to the Better Business Bureau and typing in the name of the potential recipient of your gift.

A second thing to keep in mind is that money isn’t everything. In-kind donations can be just as important to the operation of non-profits. Food pantries are in constant need of re-stocking and there is a good chance that your local children’s charity can use toys and games. Giving these types of items won’t break your budget and are just as essential to the success of an organization. As redundant as it sounds- every little bit counts. Tis’ the season to donate!

For a list of your local charities visit: http://www.charity-charities.org

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