Years after September 11, 2001, Americans remain deeply moved by the tragedy of that day and generously willing to aid those who still suffer from the impact of 9/11 events.
BBB recommends: do your homework before giving to the 9/11 cause of your choice. Here are some tips to consider if you are approached with a 9/11 related giving opportunity, especially one that seems unfamiliar, or that is similar to the name of a well-known charity.
• Ask questions about why the charity still needs to collect 9/11 related money now. What ongoing purposes are they serving that flow from the events of 9/11? You can request written details from the charity about what it does with the donations.
• Check with the IRS at www.irs.gov/app/pub-78/ to verify the organization’s tax exempt status.
• Contact your BBB to get BBB charity reviews on 9/11 related charities. See national BBB charity reviews at www.bbb.org/charity.
• Remember that any legitimate charity will allow you the time
to “check them out.” They will need your money just as much in a week as they will the day they contact you.
• Ask for a copy of the charity’s financial records. This way you can determine how much money is being received and how much is being spent on actual program services.
• Should you receive a call from a telemarketer, ask what percentage of your donation do they receive. They are required by law to provide this information.
• Never make out a check to an individual, only to the name of the charity.
9/11 is a day that changed our country forever and a day that should be remembered for those who lost loved ones. Make sure if you donate to any charity that solicits for the cause of 9/11, they will actually use your donation for the cause.