The following tips are forwarded via the West Coast newspaper and are some helpful and important pointers to consider when looking at donating to a cause:
- Refrain from giving cash. If a charity is above board they will certainly accept checks. Checks also act a form of documentation that help verifiy your giving to an organization
- there is no need to provide phone marketers with any personal info. Resist giving credit card, bank account or personal information to any telemarketers. if you are interested get their info and contact information, hang up, and initiate the call. This allows you some time to check their credentials.
- Be aware of any and all Internet appeals even if they seem legitimate. As mentioned above there is no hurry so take the time to d the research to ensure any organization is the real deal. make inquiries with watch groups and any other trusted source before moving forward. the internet allows fraudsters and con artists the ability to target anyone with access to the web.
- Don't let anyone pressure you to act on the spot: Pressure is used to prey on your emotions. The tactic is to get you thinking with your heart and not your head. Although the heart is noble it can sometimes be influenced with pressure driven solicition. So take a deep breath and move slowly.
- Be informed about what to ask for from an organization you might be interested in. You have the absolute right to ask for and expect certain information. Don't settle for non specific, murky, or generally vague responses to any inquiry no matter what the subject matter. When in doubt you should feel comfortable to tell anyone soliciting you that you'll get back to them. If they are legit they will always comply with your wishes.
- Draw upon the expertise of any number of national, state and local authorities. Honorable charities always... always register with the Internal Revenue Service. Go to irs.gov to perform research on any non-profit and make sure you get the answers your looking for!
- Non-profit organizations new to the charity world are not necessarily unworthy of your trust. Simply take the time to ask the right questions and get the common sense details that you know are required of them. You can also tap your friends, associates, and acquaintances as and added measure for verifying the data relevant to a given organization.
- Remember your effrots drive the success of good charities. Its up to donors to remain vigilant and always report abuses to the nearest Better Business Bureau and the State Attorney General's office. You can find these contacts on the internet. Another option for keeping charitable organizations on the up and up is to report any suspect issues you find with the National Fraud Information Center at (800) 876-7060. NFIC also has a web-based complaint form at fraud.org.
- Bottom Line. Giving is a great way to help the many who desperately need help and support. Your contributions can also be in the form of helping to keep charities accountable which goes along way to ensuring the future continues to be hopeful for all who are involved with and positively affected by great charitable organizations and the exceptional work they provide.