BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – The Baton Rouge Better Business Bureau is offering smart giving tips on Giving Tuesday.
The campaign started in 2012 to encourage the public to help the causes they care about most. The Better Business Bureau says Giving Tuesday has helped raise more than $1 billion for online charitable giving worldwide.
The Better Business Bureau offers the following tips for those looking to donate to a cause:
- Note the similarity of names. When charities seek support for the same cause, their names are often similar.Before you donate, make sure you know the exact name of the charity to avoid confusion.
- Check the website carefully. A responsible charity will include on its website the facts about its mission and plans, its measurable goals and the specific criteria by which it describes its achievements. You should also be able to find information about their financial situation. Remember that the type of work a charity does can affect its cost.
- Avoid field donation decisions from unfamiliar organizations. Holidays bring higher frequency of donation requests outside of public spaces. Don’t give in to the pressure to make an immediate donation decision. Responsible organizations welcome your gift tomorrow as it does today.
- Be wary of emotional appeals. Marketers have been known to use the holiday season to make an emotional appeal to donors. Rather than making impulsive decisions based on emotion, do some research first to verify that your chosen charity is ethical.
- Check with state charity officials. In many states, charities must register with the attorney general’s office before they can solicit donations. Checking the appropriate office in your state is an easy way to detect whether an organization is legitimate. You can find this information on the National Association of State Charity Officials (NASCO) website.
- research tax status. You can check your organization’s tax status using the IRS Tax-Exempt Organization Search Tool. Also, make sure your donations are tax-deductible.
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