3 Questions You Should Ask Before Donating to a Charitable Organization
When people first start giving money to charity, they often make the mistake of thinking that the money they’re giving will always be put to good use. While charitable organizations are required to use the money you give them towards the goals they stated, there are many things that they can do to manipulate you into thinking that they’re making some real changes on the ground when they aren’t.
This is why you must do your research before you give money to any charity. Let’s take a look at some of the things you should ask before donating money to a non-profit organization.
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Can You Clearly State Your Mission?
There are many organizations out there that seem to do everything at once. If we’re talking about massive organizations with big budgets and resources, they might be able to operate on multiple fronts at once. But, if we’re talking about new or small organizations, it’s always better to go with a charity that has a very specific goal and mission.
Going with a specialized charity will also help you donate towards causes that mean something to you. If you’re particularly preoccupied about the state of displaced persons around the world, for instance, then there are refugee organizations that work on this specifically. You also have charities that have new approaches to old problems.
Some charities may try to solve poverty and food insecurity through food programs, while others might focus more on self-reliance, for instance. This is the kind of thing you’ll be able to see through their mission statement, so try to take a good look at it and see if they’re truly consistent with their actions.
Can You Show Me Progress You’ve Made?
Good intentions are not enough anymore, and you have to ask for receipts before you work with a charitable organization. They should be able to show clear results, and don’t be satisfied with nice pictures; you want to see numbers. If they can’t show concrete proof that there has been a change on the ground, as well as how they contributed to it, this is a very bad sign and you should think twice about giving them any of your money.
This is also a great time to take a look at their annual report. This will allow you to get a look at their finances and see how much money they spent on their programs. This brings us to our next point.
Can You Tell Me Where My Money Will Go?
You should know that most charitable organizations will have all sorts of different programs, and, if there’s one program that catches your eye, you can always ask them if your money can go completely towards these efforts. Some people may not want their money to be used to support the organization’s overheads, and that’s perfectly understandable. Going with a charity that allows you to direct your money towards a very specific function will put you more at ease.
These are all questions that will need to be answered before you start donating blindly to a non-profit organization. This is the only way to ensure that your money will go towards your cause and not the founders’ pockets.