Even though #GivingTuesday is already here, it is not too late to consider a charitable donation this holiday season. Between now and December 31st, there are many worthy causes to give to, spreading joy to others and adding to your own year-end tax deductions. But with so many worthy causes to choose from, how can you know where to give? World Vision offers five tips to help with choosing a charity:
1. Find a charity with a track record; review the organization’s IRS tax status, check how it spends money and makes important decisions. Good places to find this information are Charity Navigator and GuideStart.
2. Be thoughtful about an organization’s overhead and administrative costs; cost efficiency is an important factor when choosing a charity, but effectiveness is the key.
3. Ask questions before you give – visit a charity’s website, send an email, or call if you have concerns.
4. See what others are saying about the charity of your choice via social media and trusted online forums.
5. Watch for scams; be on your guard for emails that ask for credit card or other personal information. Check the Better Business Bureau Charity Reviews website ( www.bbb.org/charity-reviews) before giving.
World Vision, a humanitarian non-profit organization with an impressive track record in the fight against poverty, has been helping struggling children and families in the U.S. and around the world for decades. With a financial contribution of as little as $25 to the World Vision Gift Catalog, the gift giver can select one of 36 handcrafted items (a few are listed below) that can be given to a loved one and at the same time help a person in need.
Check out these fun items that are included:
- Silver Vines Cuff: This gorgeous adjustable silver cuff bracelet features an intricately laced vine pattern designed by artisans in Old Delhi, India. This stunning piece is the result of once mistreated jewelry makers banding together to support their families through fair trade practices.
- Chiang Mai Leather Bands: Loved by both men and women, these expandable wristbands are made to support children of Chiang Mai, Thailand.
- Hand-Woven Headband: This beautiful 100% cotton headband woven by skilled workers in Lake Atitlan in Guatemala helps address urgent needs of children, families, or communities that might otherwise go unmet.
- Colors of Africa Bracelet and Earring Set: This gorgeous Zakale jewelry set is handmade from recycled materials by Kenyan artisans reclaiming their own lives from poverty.
- “Prosperity” Cinnamon Box: Vietnam’s renowned sweet cinnamon is a renewable resource collected from the Cassia tree by skilled artisans. It is presented in a beautifully carved cinnamon bark box that bears a common Asian character for prosperity.
- Hand-Carved Serving Spoons: This beautiful set of two hand-carved olivewood serving spoons is delivered in a hand-sewn gift bag of African fabric and can be used as a decoration or for serving.
- Fair-Trade Coffee Set: This set includes coffee from Ethiopia, Sumatra, and Costa Rica blended by OneCup.org and is delivered in a bag of African fabric hand-sewn by local women with a hand-carved olivewood scoop.
Check out the World Vision Gift Catalog on their Facebook page.