It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when choosing a fundraising program. Still, don’t allow information overload to dampen your good intentions. Here are five questions to ask before you decide on a fundraising program.
Is It Easy To Check Their Credentials Online or Offline?
The prevalence of fraudulent fundraising activities makes it more difficult to trust charitable and non-profit groups. You should find it easy to know more about a certain organization through online channels.
Find out what other people are saying about them on their social media accounts. Legitimate fundraising programs like Paul Esterhuizen’s School-Days and UNICEF maximize social media to further their causes.
It’s even better if you could visit them in person to familiarize yourself with their work. During times when it isn’t possible to schedule a visit, an online background check should be enough to answer your questions.
How Will They Use the Money?
This should be a no-brainer, but most people become queasy when it comes to asking about money matters. Don’t hesitate to press them about their strategies for using the proceeds from donations.
If it’s a fundraiser for children, a vague answer like “supporting their growth” should be a red flag. When possible, look into a group’s cost-per-dollar analysis for fundraising events.
It’s not the most efficient way to measure an organization, but it should give a snapshot of how they use donations. For example, UNICEF said that every US$1 million spent in the poorest communities saves more lives than investing the same amount in less deprived groups.
Learn more about the organization’s policy on protecting the private data of their donors. Ask them how they store or handle information such as your addresses, bank account details, and phone numbers. It’s also important to know if you can choose to be an anonymous donor.
Are They Using Secure Payment Gateways?
Online payment methods allow anyone to send or receive money. If a fundraising program uses online payment forms, it must clearly explain that you’re using a trustworthy payment channel.
For instance, your credit card and password data should be encrypted when you use their website.
One simple trick is to view the site information. You can do this by clicking the lock icon beside the website URL on your browser’s search bar. Never disclose your private details if you can’t see the lock icon.
Do They Accept In-Kind Donations?
Fundraising programs aren’t always about money. If you plan to donate material goods instead of cash, the organization should be clear on what they can accept from potential donors. You should be aware of what you can’t donate at the same time.
You may have additional questions to find out more about your chosen fundraising program. Start with these five questions and elaborate on certain points from their probable answers. In this way, you’re likely to be well-informed by engaging in a meaningful conversation.