Too Good to be True?

It may be.Caution

This week the PCNRC got an email questioning the legitimacy of a fundraising website.

We researched the site and the for-profit business that is promoting the event. First look ran up some red flags so we dug deeper and came across some additional information which concerns us enough to post here.

The organization that contacted us was considering signing up for a one-day online giving event the site was promoting.  It is free to sign up, but be aware of the fine print.

Bottom line? 

The PCNRC staff cautions any nonprofit organization considering participating in any one-day online fundraisers to:

  • verify the legitimacy of the vendor;
  • read the Terms in their entirety (perhaps run them past your attorney);
  • consider any potential, additional fees your organization may incur by participating.

Caution for Donors

It feels great to donate to charity, but to be certain your dollars support the causes you care about we suggest:

  • Go directly to your favorite charities’ websites.
  • Do not go through a middleman site ( you’ll skip paying their fees).
  • Verify the legitimacy of the charity if you do not already have a relationship with them:
    • Find them on the Indiana Secretary of State’s website here then,
    • Verify the organization’s 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status on the IRS or here
    • Look at the organization’s form 990s here or here
  • Consider the ‘service charge’ for your donation.  Send the nonprofit charity a check, it’ll just cost you a stamp!

If you have further questions please contact us at nrc@acpl.info or 421-1238.

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