Times Chronicle & Public Spirit
MAKE THE MOST OF THIS MEANINGFUL SEASON OF GIVING
Almost as quickly as the candy disappeared from doorstep bowls on Halloween night, we’ve found ourselves in the “most wonderful time of the year.”
Yet nestled somewhere between the blur of twinkling lights and carols on FM repeat, grocery store checkout lanes that meander for aisles and making lists (and checking them twice!), there is another more meaningful side of the season that ties it all together for many of us — that of giving.
According to a 2021 report, giving during October, November and December accounts for 37% of all the year’s charitable donations. It is indeed the season of giving — and for many seniors, giving to a charity is the preferred method for delivering joy to those in need.
There are many options for where to donate, but it is important to know that not all charities are created equal. Here you’ll find a straightforward guide to help you as you search for an organization that is reputable and that will use your gift in a meaningful way.
Finding the type of charity
Giving to a charity is a way to change a wrong in the world for the better. A great place to start when choosing one is to consider what is most important to you.
Perhaps you or a loved one has been affected by a health condition. Maybe you come from a family of veterans and wish to better the lives of those who have served. Ask yourself what issues in our world weigh on your heart; there you will find the type of charity that will bring you satisfaction in supporting.
Finding the right charity
So, you’ve narrowed down the type of charity to which you would like to give. Now what? Not only does each greater cause have several organizations to choose from, but there are also many realistic looking — yet fraudulent — organizations posing as legitimate charities.
Thankfully, databases like CharityNavigator.org make it easy to search for organizations within each charitable category. Here you can also verify whether a charity is reputable and find information on how it uses its money to support its mission. When researching a charity you’re thinking about supporting, look for the following:
What are the charity’s mission and goals?
How much of its donations go directly toward
reaching its goals and supporting its mission?
Is the charity making a difference? If so, how?
A reputable charity is transparent; its financial documents should be accessible to potential donors. Most charity grading systems consider a charity to be very efficient if it uses 75% or more of its funds for program support.
Founded on Quaker principles, The Hickman
has offered affordable living to seniors of all backgrounds and faiths since 1891, an accomplishment made possible through generous donations both past and present. We invite you to visit us at our beautiful location in the heart of downtown West Chester — you’re sure to discover that “when you’re here, you’re home.” For more information visit www. thehickman.org.