Re­sources for Phil­an­thropic Clients

Financial Planning - - Philanthropy -

• Clients can learn more about the char­i­ties that in­ter­est them by read­ing each or­ga­ni­za­tion’s IRS Form 990 and other fi­nan­cial re­ports on Guidestar.org. The fil­ings dis­close the na­ture of a non­profit’s work, the amount of money raised and names of board mem­bers.

The sites Char­i­ty­nav­i­ga­tor.org and Give.org rank char­i­ties based on their fi­nances, trans­parency and ac­count­abil­ity. A good guide is to stick with groups whose ad­min­is­tra­tive ex­penses to­tal less than 25% of their bud­gets.

• When clients want to tar­get a broad cause like en­vi­ron­men­tal pol­lu­tion or LGBTQ rights but do not have a spe­cific or­ga­ni­za­tion in mind, other dig­i­tal tools can help them learn more. Myphi­lan­thro­pe­dia.org com­piles ex­pert re­views on al­most 800 char­i­ties across 36 causes. Givewell.org, Giv­ing­whatwe­can.org, and The­lifey­ou­cansave.org cre­ate short­lists of top-rated or­ga­ni­za­tions that are man­ag­ing costs ef­fec­tively and are in need of more fund­ing.

• For smaller or lo­cal char­i­ties, greatnon­prof­its.org can aid a client in the search for lo­cal peo­ple who work with the or­ga­ni­za­tion. Ad­vi­sors might also en­cour­age clients to test out a small char­ity first­hand by vol­un­teer­ing or do­nat­ing small amounts at first, to see if they like the char­ity’s pro­grams and level of donor en­gage­ment.

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