The Willis Report: Check your charity - Boston News, Weather, Sports | FOX 25 | MyFoxBoston

The Willis Report: Check your charity

Posted: Updated:

By Gerri Willis
FOX Business Network


Americans are the most generous people in the world giving an eye popping $310 billion to charities last year. But if you like to donate, it pays to be sure your money is being used wisely.

According to the New York Attorney General's office, of charities that used telemarketers to fund raise, 62 cents of every dollar donated were kept by those telemarketers. In half of the fundraising campaigns run by telemarketers, the charities retained less than 30 percent of the funds raised. That's not a good return on investment.

And, it's not just pricey fundraising that puts your dollars at risk. Bloated executive salaries, mushy missions and sound alike charity names can all result in a waste of your charity dollars.

So, be sure to check out your charity before you donate. One great resource is CharityNavigator.org. This website does the heavy lifting for you, vetting many players. If your favorite charity is not on the site, ask basic questions. Is the organization a legitimate not for profit? If the entity doesn't have that designation, you can't deduct contributions on your taxes. Avoid any charity using telemarketers.

Read the mission statement. You should look for organizations that have concrete goals. Charities should also tell you how much of each dollar they receive is going to their cause. Watch for high operating expenses.

Finally, if you have a specific charity you want to give to, be sure to get the name exactly right before you stroke a check. Scammers try to take advantage of your goodwill by promoting ventures whose names sound legit or mimic those of established charities.

Use your charity dollars wisely. Remember, the more care you give in dispensing your money, the more causes you can help.

Interact with Gerri on Twitter @GerriWillisFBN and Facebook for more information, or to voice your concerns and questions.

  • BusinessMore>>

  • Twitter admits to diversity problem in workforce

    Twitter admits to diversity problem in workforce

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:06 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:06:54 GMT
    Twitter is acknowledging that it has been hiring too many white and Asian men to fill high-paying technology jobs, just like several other major companies in Silicon Valley.
    Twitter acknowledged that it has been hiring too many white and Asian men to fill high-paying technology jobs, just like several other major companies in Silicon Valley.
  • NYC official: Thieves got into 1K StubHub accounts

    NYC official: Thieves got into 1K StubHub accounts

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:05 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:05:13 GMT
    A law enforcement official and online marketplace StubHub say cyber thieves got into more than 1,000 customers' accounts and fraudulently bought tickets for events.
    Some of the hottest tickets in town - to Broadway hits, Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake concerts, a New York Yankees-Boston Red Sox game - were snapped up by an international ring of cyber thieves who commandeered more than...
  • Apple post biggest earnings gain in nearly 2 years

    Apple post biggest earnings gain in nearly 2 years

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:04 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:04:24 GMT
    Apple's growth prospects are looking brighter as anticipation builds for the upcoming release of the next iPhone, a model that is expected to cater to consumers yearning for a bigger screen.
    Apple's growth prospects are looking brighter as anticipation builds for the upcoming release of the next iPhone, a model that is expected to cater to consumers yearning for a bigger screen.
Powered by WorldNow

25 FOX Drive
Dedham, MA 02026

Phone (781) 467-2525

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices