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Giving TipsTips for Giving This Holiday Season

Charity Navigator offers the following guidelines to ensure your holiday contributions are well-spent.

  • Think about the long term
  • Ensure the charity is efficient, ethical and effective
  • Help charities squeezed by the federal government shutdown
  • Be wary of crowdfunding sites
  • Give online in one place

Read the Tips

Year-End Giving Survey

To gain a better understanding of giving trends for the 2013 year-end giving season, we recently ran two surveys: one targeted at donors and one for charity representatives. Our survey explored the:

  • Predictions for year-end giving (will it be greater, less than or the same as last year)
  • Importance of year-end donations and online giving to the charities’ bottom line
  • Issues that are most important in selecting a charity

Our findings may surprise you! Review the Results Now

Giving Facts

  • Contributions are deductible in the year made. Thus, donations charged to a credit card before the end of 2013 count for 2013. This is true even if the credit card bill isn't paid until 2014. Also, checks count for 2013 as long as they are mailed in 2013 and clear, shortly thereafter.
  • Middle-class Americans give a far bigger share of their discretionary income to charities than the rich. A report by The Chronicle of Philanthropy showed that households that earn $50,000 to $75,000 give an average of 7.6% of their discretionary income to charity, compared with an average of 4.2% for people who make $100,000 or more.
  • Individuals spent less time volunteering in 2012, but nearly 26.5% of the adults in the United States volunteered with an organization that year. Volunteers contributed 12.7 billion hours in 2012, worth an estimated $259.6 billion.
  • The average person makes 24% of their annual donations between Thanksgiving and New Year's, according to research from the Center on Philanthropy.
  • Women of the baby boom and older generations give 89% more than their male counterparts, Women's Philanthropy Institute research shows.
  • After a successful inaugural effort during the fall of 2012, a unique giving experience will take place again this year on December 3rd, 2013. It is called #GivingTuesday and it is catching on across the country and around the world. This movement aims to set aside a day dedicated to giving, similar to how Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become days that are synonymous with holiday shopping.

Top 10 List Expanded
Highest and Lowest-Rated Charities by Cause

We offer the following list as a quick reference guide to the highest and lowest-rated charity in each cause that we evaluate. In providing this list, our goal is to help you navigate the crowded charitable marketplace and make intelligent giving decisions.
View the List

Support Our Work

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We work hard for you all year long so we hope you'll include us in your year-end giving plans.

People Are Talking About These Charities!

Some of the charities on our site really have people talking via the Facebook Comments tool. Read the interesting comments (favorable for some charities and not so favorable for others) left by donors about these charities: National Relief Charities, Police Protective Fund and Christian Foundation for Children and Aging. Then help other donors give wisely by posting a comment about a charity you know. 

Learn More About Facebook Comment


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