The Willis Report: Check your charity - Fox 2 News Headlines

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>>

  • Delta 2Q profit rises 17 percent

    Delta 2Q profit rises 17 percent

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 1:32 PM EDT2014-07-23 17:32:52 GMT
    Delta Air Lines Inc. (DAL) on Wednesday reported earnings that climbed by 17 percent in its second quarter, and topped analysts' expectations.
    Delta Air Lines Inc. said Wednesday that second-quarter earnings rose 17 percent, topping analysts' expectations, as passengers flew more miles at higher average fares and fuel spending declined.
  • IMF sees US growth at weakest since recession

    IMF sees US growth at weakest since recession

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 1:32 PM EDT2014-07-23 17:32:46 GMT
    The International Monetary Fund has shaved its forecast for U.S. economic growth this year, mostly because of a sharp contraction in the first quarter.
    U.S. economic growth this year will likely be at the weakest pace since the Great Recession ended, the International Monetary Fund said, mostly because of a sharp, weather-related contraction in the first quarter.
  • AP source: Thieves got into 1K StubHub accounts

    AP source: Thieves got into 1K StubHub accounts

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 1:23 PM EDT2014-07-23 17:23:02 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.
    Cyber thieves got into more than 1,000 StubHub customers' accounts and fraudulently bought tickets for events through the online ticket reseller, a law enforcement official and the company said.
Powered by WorldNow

WJBK-TV | Fox 2
16550 West Nine Mile Rd.
Southfield, MI 48075

Main Station: (248) 557-2000
Newsroom: (248) 552-5103

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