Inner Workings of Charities & NPOs

When A Charity Calls, What To Do


telemarketerCharities tend to call up out of the blue trying to get you to donate to their causes. While many happen to be trustworthy and hardworking charities there are many who are just fronts for scams and information laundering. Finding out the fakes from the actual charities is your responsibility and here is how you can do just that.

Who’s Calling – Find This Out

Phone calls do not give a lot of credibility but it often is the first point of contact for non-profit organizations and non-profit telemarketers. Unfortunately, many of these telemarketers tend to keep back a good size of the donation for their own pockets rather than sharing with the charity they are promoting. Always ask the person to identify themselves. Find out what telemarketing company they work for, are they volunteers or employees from the charity itself. Be specific and curt.

Ask Where The Donations Go

More specifically ask where your donation will go. Be professional with the telemarketers. Every telemarketing firm actually keeps a cut of your donation and the rest goes to charity. Compel them to divulge this information and it is their legal obligation to tell you so.

If Necessary, Get In Writing

Whatever information you require, ask the person calling to give you the same either by email or in written. If you want the charity’s annual report then ask for it. If you want a brochure, then ask for it and be curt when you ask them to summarize the accomplishments and missions for the charity. Often, this stage is where you can weed out the scams from the real charities.

Donate Goods Instead of Money

Most reputable charities will have physical retail outlets as well as telephone fundraising campaigns. At these charity shops you can donate old toys, media, clothes and household items you no longer need. These are then resold and the money collected goes towards helping the charitable cause. You should have a look in your attic or self storage space if you have one, get rid of the clutter and help a good cause.

Always Do Your Research

Do not blindly donate just because you like the person on the phone. Research on the charity, ask for a couple of days to do this research and tell them you will be researching on the charity. Only after you feel confident about their workings should you give away your hard earned money.

Remove The Middleman

If you can then do call the charity and directly ask them how you can donate to their cause without having to give a little away to the middlemen. Why should you pay for a profit making company when your only intention is to donate to charity?

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