How Do I Decide Which Non-Profit to Donate to?

‘Tis the season for giving. At this time of year, many of us start planning to give back to those who are less fortunate. We may cook food for those who don’t have anywhere to go on Thanksgiving or gift clothes and other possessions like old cars we no longer need or use. Now is the time to think about bringing joy to the lives of others. The next question may be how do I decide which non-profit to donate to? Choosing a non-profit or charity for your gift can feel daunting with the vast number of options available. This blog will explore how to decide which non-profit to donate to so you can trust your donation is being put to good use.

Tips for Choosing an Organization to Give Back to

  1. Do the values of the charity align with yours? It’s essential to read the mission statement of the charity or organization you want to donate to and ensure your values are aligned. For example, at Vehicles for Change, we donate cars to families in need and train and employ formerly incarcerated individuals who may not have otherwise had access to a second chance in life.
  2. Make sure the non-profit is legitimate. Unfortunately, you can’t always trust everything you find on the internet. When choosing a non-profit or charity, ensure they have employer identification numbers, also known as Tax-ID numbers. Having an EIN (employer identification number) means that the non-profit is on the IRS’s radar, and it’s likely that your donation is tax-deductible. In a worst-case scenario, if something ever feels off with your donation, you have a way of reporting it.
  3. Do they share the details of how their organization runs? If an organization seems to be keeping details vague on its website, you should take this as a red flag. There shouldn’t be any mystery regarding how the organization uses your donation or whether it is tax-deductible. Make sure there is a clear description of the steps you must take when choosing to donate and how the charity will provide a receipt for your donation.
  4. Look for testimonials. It’s also a great indicator that a non-profit is legitimate if they have verified testimonials from others who have chosen to donate to them. Make sure these reviews seem to be from real people and that the spelling and grammar are correct; the more suspicious a testimonial or review looks, the more likely it is.
  5. Are they giving back in the right way? It’s important to research how exactly the non-profit of your choosing is giving back to others. Take the time to read about how the organization will use your donation to serve those in need. For example, at Vehicles for Change, we work diligently to repair any car donation we receive to sell it at an affordable price to a needy family. We are the nation’s most extensive affordable car ownership program. While 99% of other car donation charities use donations for revenue only (by auctioning off donated cars), we repair and refurbish donated vehicles to help families in need gain access to better employment opportunities, food, and recreational activities. Donors, therefore, can claim their cars’ full fair market value as their deduction if the car is given to a family in need.

Contact Us Today

Why hope these five tips will help if you’re one of the generous donors wondering, “how do I decide which non-profit to donate to?” If you’re interested in learning more about Vehicles for Change or how to get started with donating your vehicle, send us a message online here. You can also directly speak to someone on our team by calling 855-820-7990. We look forward to helping you decide whether we are a good fit for your next donation!