Tax season is almost here. Maybe now you wished you would have donated more money to charity. You do know that charity donations can be written off on your taxes, right? That is a perfect way to give money and still get a deduction at the same time. Although it is too late to donate anything and claim it on your 2006 taxes, you could think about donating now and save when taxes rolls around again next year (and there is no avoiding it, they will return, every year).
Here are a few places you may think about donating some money or maybe even some time.
The Conservation Fund. This charity helps to preserve areas of land for future generations. It was started in 1985. Contributions go to help maintain wetlands in Alaska, restoring forestlands in South Carolina and protecting the wildlife in Arizona near the Grand Canyon. For more information you can check out their website at: conservationfund.org
AmeriCares. This charity helps victims of wars and natural disasters. They have been helping people for over 24 years. For more information, here is there website: americares.org
DonorsChoose. This charity helps schools by matching donations. The donations helps the school with their curriculum needs such as helping to fund a class field trip or providing tools for science experiments. You can learn more about them at donorschoose.org
Mercy Corps. This charity helps to create programs to assist people who have been hurt by natural disaster, conflict and severe poverty. For example, they helped out during Hurricane Katrina. You can learn more about them at mercycorps.org
First Book. This charity helps to inspire children from low income families to learn to love to read by giving out books, to low income children, so they can begin their own collection. You can learn more about them at firstbook.org
Children’s Hunger Fund. This charity has all ready given over $600 million in aid to children in over 70 countries since 1991. They also teach local populations about nutrition. You can learn more about them at childrenshungerfund.org
World Vision. This charity also helps children in crisis with long term care. They were first established in 1950. You can learn more about them at worldvision.org.
Care. This charity teaches women and girls in some of the most poorest areas of the world literacy, self-sufficiency and business skills. You can learn more about them at care.org.
America’s Second Harvest. This charity distributes nearly 2 billion pounds of food and grocery products to hungry families right here in the United States. You can learn more about them at secondharvest.org
Make-A-Wish-Foundation. This charity helps to enrich the lives of ill children by granting one wish every 41 minutes. You can learn more about them at: wish.org
The Emancipation Network. This charity helps victims that have been forced into slavery and offers them a new life. You can learn more about them at madebysurvivors.com
Giving is a wonderful way to share our money with the world and those in need. But be warned, there are people out there who will make a mockery of charities and pose as being a real charity when they are just scam artists after your money. Before you give money to any charity, think and be smart. Here are some simple guidelines to follow when donating:
Ask how much of the money is actually going to directly to the direct action, instead of the administration and fundraising costs.
Watch out for phone and email requests. Before giving money, ask for written information be mailed to you.
Decide one or two charities to help. By doing this you can give more and the charity can actually be able to do more good with the money, than if you give to lots of charities but only give $10.
Be careful about charities with sound a like names. Make sure it is the real charity.