…charitable fundraising. With the Christmas spirit rising and the tax write-off deadline looming, generous and astute people are considering making monetary donations to charitable causes. If you’ve ever given to anything (and I hope you have) the downside of that gift is that we are both on mailing lists for worthy causes. The worthy causes (some of whom I personally solicit for) have learned that people are more likely to make a donation right before January 1. So we get mail. I don’t begrudge needy people and good causes their just donations, but I do know that our personal pot of money is only so deep. Over the years we have developed several criteria for giving money away:

  1. Tithe, meaning give 10% of our income away (church support, charities, causes, political candidates, etc. They all count. (This frees us from the pesky question of “Are we giving enough or too much?”
  2. Give priority to causes we are personally involved with.
  3. Give priority to causes that are local, that not everybody may know about, and small enough that our little donation can make a difference, i.e., leave the big diseases and global causes to those who have deeper pockets and aren’t aware of the more specialized projects we are committed to.
  4. Give to walks, runs, rides, etc. when someone we have a personal relationship with, asks.
  5. Give to any child who is selling something door to door. Been there, done that.
  6. When in doubt check  Charity Navigator. This organization evaluates the health and ratio of proceeds actually going to the needy
    for over 5,400 of America’s largest charities.

For additional ideas check my website enrichment exercise: Donating With Confidence