Author Charity apparently begins and ends at home for these schmucks  (Read 394 times)

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Re: Charity apparently begins and ends at home for these schmucks
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2014, 07:41:55 PM »
The article mentions charity navigator.  While not perfect, it actually is important for people to know where their money is going and how the charity spends it.  Simply typing in the name of the charity in the search bar gives the charity score and the reasons behind the score.  If you want to donate to a 0 star charity, I suppose it is your choice.

I would like to see the IRS use charity navigators scores as a guide of who to look closely at...http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=12342#.U-F5bfm0dNa 


Re: Charity apparently begins and ends at home for these schmucks
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2014, 08:03:49 PM »
The article mentions charity navigator.  While not perfect, it actually is important for people to know where their money is going and how the charity spends it.  Simply typing in the name of the charity in the search bar gives the charity score and the reasons behind the score.  If you want to donate to a 0 star charity, I suppose it is your choice.

I would like to see the IRS use charity navigators scores as a guide of who to look closely at...http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=12342#.U-F5bfm0dNa
Not that I don't trust them but why should I trust a Private Operating Foundation, turned into a charity, created by millionaires itself to rate other charities? Why should millionaires be allowed to divert their funds into Foundations for pet causes, even if good ones, instead of paying into the general welfare and public good by paying that in taxes?
from a search I tried:
"We don't evaluate Charity Navigator.
Why not?

At this time, Charity Navigator is not eligible to be rated because we require organizations to have filed at least 5 years of the full Form 990 with the IRS and because of Charity Navigatorís previous nonprofit classification, it hasnít yet filed 5 years of full Form 990s."

Re: Charity apparently begins and ends at home for these schmucks
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2014, 05:08:39 AM »
Not that I don't trust them but why should I trust a Private Operating Foundation, turned into a charity, created by millionaires itself to rate other charities? Why should millionaires be allowed to divert their funds into Foundations for pet causes, even if good ones, instead of paying into the general welfare and public good by paying that in taxes?
Why should they be allowed to fund superpacs and buy politicians?  If a millionaire wants to create something that can be used for public good with his own money, I say "go for it."

I do not suggest that you use them as your only source of information if you are giving away your life savings... Do more research.  But it is a great starting point.  I think the fact that "Move America Forward" gets massive donations pretty much proves that the majority of people do not look at anything before witting a cheque for $20.  Perhaps a quick check on the net would help people to get their money where they want it.

A 0 star rating does not necessarily mean that you should not donate- it means that you need to look a little closer and see if the reasons behind it bother you.  The site gives the basic details of how much is spent and where it is spent.  After that, it is up to you to check the form 990 and look at the audited statements.  There is also charitywatch.org foundationcenter.org/ and guidestar.org (you have to sign up).  They are all just starting points if you actually want to do your own research... Most people will not even look at an audited statement of a company before the invest their retirement savings... To expect them to look at a charity before giving a small sum is insanity.  These services just make it easier.

When you consider that charity is a multi-billion dollar a year industry (The metropolitan opera alone brings in a quarter billion each year while the American red cross pulls in 3.5 billion- with a "B"). It makes sense to spend a little and have somebody try to pull together at least the basic information on one site.  Charity watch spends a million a year to do this... If you look at their audited statement and think that they are paying the staff too much or that they are misappropriating funds then do not donate... 

As to charity navigator- take a look at their form 990 and audited financials and decide for yourself if you want to give to them.  I have faith that you are intelligent enough to figure it out on your own. http://www.charitynavigator.org/docs/CN_FYE_2013_990.pdf http://www.charitynavigator.org/__asset__/_etc_/charity_nav_fs_2013.pdf

(On a side note- my personal experience has told me there is no way I would ever donate to the Red Cross... yet it gets a solid 3 stars.  As you suggest, this should not be your only guide... Do your own research.  It is just another tool.  There is no way for a million dollar charity to look at what actually happened to 3.5 billion- they can only see how much was spent on programs- not if the programs did anything beneficial or how efficient they were.)