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Thinking of Making a Significant Donation to Charity (and you don’t have an advisor on staff)

Here are five things to consider doing first:

1. See what guidestar.org has to say about the charity. If the charity is not listed, get information from the charity – it may be part of a larger charity, like Catholic Charities, that you can check out.

2. Ask what they will do with your donation and what will happen if they don’t receive your donation. Ask if you can restrict the use of the funds you donate (for example, say that the money cannot be used for salaries), and if they say no, be honest with yourself about how you feel about that.

3. Ask who provides oversight over how the charity establishes priorities and spends the money it raises. Again, be honest with yourself in reacting to what they say.

4. Ask the charity for information about itself, and read it carefully.

5. Google the charity and read over what you find.