Have you always wondered what the best thing to do to help in a crisis is. Do you know WHO are the good organizations to donate too and who’s going to take a big % of your money before passing a pittance on to those in need? According to Eileen Heisman, CEO and president of National Philanthropic Trust there are a few “how-to’s” for giving.
1. Tried and true
During a crisis, many well-meaning, and even a fewnot so well-intended, organizations spring up to help. Although hearts may be in the right place, on-the-ground personnel, relationships, infrastructure and funding may not exist to make a meaningful difference to those in need. When in doubt, donate your money, time or other assets to well-established organizations that can turn your donation into the greatest possible good in the least amount of time. National Philanthropic Trust vets organizations on an on-going basis for their philanthropist clients. CNN also hosts a page, Impact Your World, with a great round up of breaking news, tips and organizations.
2. Give what is most needed
While all contributions are appreciated, think of what an organization facing a crisis would most need. Many times, shipments of tangible goods can create logistical issues, and perishable goods won’t survive shipping times. When possible, donate cash so that relief organizations can fund immediate needs quickly.
3. Give today, give tomorrow
Many of these organizations have a long-time presence in the area they serve. While generous donors open their hearts and wallets during a breaking crisis, funds often dry up when the news cameras go away. The only thing left behind, unfortunately, is the continuing need of the people in distress. So, sit down with your family and financial advisor and work out a plan for continued, long-term support for the organization you would like to help. This will ensure their presence, and effectiveness, during the next crisis.
4. Talk about it
Americans can be very private, and generous, with their contributions. You don’t need to discuss the size of your donation, but please do tell friends, family and co-workers about your support. This will encourage them to think of ways in which they can give.
For more detailed infomation, visit NPT’’s new blog, The Philanthropist, for their post about giving during a crisis