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Want to Donate to a Charity? Contact the BBB first!

Want to Donate to a Charity? Contact the BBB first! - The Beacon


By: Alanna

Want to Donate to a Charity?  Contact the BBB first!

Many people know that the Better Business Bureau provides Reliability Reports for businesses. But what about nonprofit organizations and charities that solicit for donations? The BBB reports on those entities too!

The BBB has a national and local Charity Reporting Service. Nationally, charity reports can be found at this site. In the Evansville tri-state area, local charity reports can be found here. These reports are similar to the business reliability reports in that they give the organization’s start date, CEO, and complaint information. But, the reports also give the mission of the organization, programs, financials of the organization (taken from their Audited Financial Statements), and even fundraising methods. The BBB also evaluates information provided by the organization in relation to the BBB’s voluntary Standards for Charity Accountability. These standards which address organizational governance, fundraising, and financial issues, also include a number of provisions to strengthen charitable accountability to donors.

The Tri-State BBB Charity Reporting Service also offers a Wise Giving Seal to authorized local charities that meet the BBB Standards for Charity Accountability. This program allows the authorized charities to inform their donors and other funders that the organization meets the Standards for Charity Accountability; addresses accountability issues like donor privacy and charity effectiveness that go beyond what the government require; and works to increase donor confidence and strengthen public trust in philanthropy.

Wise Giving Seal

Have a question about a local charity? Don’t see a local charity in our database? Are you with a local charity and would like to be evaluated? Contact me (Alanna) at agoodman[at]evansville[dot]bbb[dot]org.

And remember: Don’t succumb to pressure to give money on the spot or allow a “runner” to pick up a contribution; the charity that needs your money today will welcome it just as much tomorrow.

The local Charity Reporting Service is a program of the Evansville Regional Better Business Bureau Foundation, a 501(c)3 charitable organization. Its mission is to promote public understanding of reputable philanthropic endeavors, and to advance high standards of ethical conduct among all organizations which solicit from the public, to promote public understanding of our economic system and to provide information to consumers to assist them to make knowledgeable choices in the marketplace. For more information, visit our site.

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Alanna was the BBB's Foundation Director until 2008. She managed our charity reporting program and wrote our accredited business and consumer newsletters.