From Consumer Wiki
The Better Business Bureau (BBB), Wise Giving Alliance offers guidance to donors on making informed giving decisions through our charity evaluations, various "tips" publications, and publishes the quarterly BBB Wise Giving Guide.
TIPS FOR GIVERS: be aware of how solicitations are made, and ask for written, information which tells you all the facts.
- 1. The exact name of the organization (some sound-alike groups confuse consumers).
- 2. The organization's purpose (finding a cure for a disease, caring for people who suffer from the disease, etc.).
- 3. How the group attempts to achieve its goals (its own research, making grants, etc.).
- 4. How much of your dollar is used for true charitable purposes (ethical standards call for a minimum of 60 cents out of each dollar spent).
- 5. High-pressure calls and mail solicitations that emphasize emotional content but contain little or no substance.
- 6. Charities that won't send written material until you donate, or because there isn't "time" or it's "too costly."
- 7. Phone calls and letters telling you that you have won money or a valuable prize from a "charity."
- 8. Callers who want to send someone over to pick up your contribution. Insist on using the U.S. mail.
- 9. Don't give cash, and don't give your credit card number to strangers. Write a check made payable only to the full name of the charity
- 10. Don't respond to letters that demand payment of money pledged unless your are 100% certain that you did.
Better Business Bureau
400 S Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
Publications available: Postal Inspector Crime Tip Sheets