Many people engage with a charitable cause somehow throughout the year. That said, many aren’t acquainted with the finer details of charitable donations and, as a result, are wary of something going wrong if they were to donate. Read our list of common misconceptions about charitable giving to gain clarity and ease your mind about being generous.
Giving Doesn’t Make a Big Difference
Too often, people considering whether to give to charity assume their money will not reach the population they’re giving to serve. They expect the bureaucracy of the charity to whittle away at their gift to pay for overhead costs so that very little money reaches those charity programs. While it’s true that all effective charities have overhead costs to pay for staff, facilities, research, materials, and more, these resources commonly go towards pushing charitable programs forward. If you’re skeptical, effective charities can show you measurable signs of the good their programs accomplished over time.
You Can Donate to Any “Charity”
Where donating to charities can go wrong is when you donate to an organization that the IRS does not recognize as a 501(c)(3) organization. Qualifying organizations must prove their registration through the IRS to donors who want to verify their status. 501(c)(3) represents a tax status for organizations that prove they fall under a charitable, religious, or other non-profit category. They prove this by devoting a certain amount of money towards charitable causes, opening themselves up to IRS inspections, limiting political activity, and more. If a charity you donate to doesn’t register as a 501(c)(3), the government does not mandate that they use your money as you may want them to. Essentially, the name “charity” doesn’t guarantee an organization is worth giving to, so do your own research before donating.
Donating Needs to Be Complicated
Another common misconception about charitable giving is that the giving process is long and complicated. The reality is that, in our digital climate, online giving is easier than ever. In fact, charities work hard to make the giving process as easy as possible. This includes customizable donations and the freedom to easily end the relationship if you must.
Charitable Donations = Large Cash Donations
Finally, those with a heart to give may assume that their wallet isn’t deep enough to make a difference. The true story is that donations thrive on a diversified donor base of all levels, especially those who give a little each month. In fact, smaller donations give charities a surer sense of stability over time than large, unexpected lump-sum gifts. Don’t assume that the little you want to offer won’t help because it isn’t large enough.
If you’re inspired to give, consider giving money or supplies to a credible charity you care about or just discovered. For wholesale supplies ready for donation, consider partnering with Backpacks USA. We supply bulk school backpacks perfect for needy students, along with bulk clothing and hygiene kits ideal for homeless shelters in need of restocking.