Donating time or money to charitable causes is an important part of many Americans’ lives. Close to three-quarters of the more than $315 billion given to charity in 2012 came from individual households. Giving allows us to help organizations that positively impact the world, it gives us a feel-good factor, and in some cases it can provide us with benefits come tax time.
But with well over a million IRS-registered charities in the U.S., giving can be a confusing and sometimes frustrating process. We all want to give to charities that will use our time or money on projects and programs that will make a real difference in the world. However, it’s not always easy to tell which charities are doing the best work. Fortunately, there are a number of resources available to help donors make informed decisions about their giving.
We all want to feel like the time and money we donate to charities is making a real difference and improving lives. When we look at some of the most important private foundations engaged in philanthropy today, it’s hard not to admire the ways they are dramatically improving areas like global health or education. The reason these foundations have been able to make such an impact is because their giving is based on thorough careful research and close assessment of all the projects and charities they fund.
With the resources provided below you can provide yourself with the kind of information expert analysts at private foundations use to decide where to put those foundations’ money. Think of your charitable giving as an investment in creating a better world. You wouldn’t invest in a company if you didn’t have confidence in that company’s ability to create value. Using these resources you can give yourself similar confidence that the charities you give to will create value of a different kind.
The design of your portfolio is fully customizable—for example, you could put 40% of your portfolio in water, 30% in education, 20% in health, and so on. And if you want to add a charity not in Bright Funds’ pre-built funds to your portfolio, you can add any 501c3 registered nonprofit in the United States. The single platform for giving to multiple charities also allows you to get a single tax report for all your donations.
Bradley DePew works with the Bright Funds marketing team. Bright Funds is an innovative platform partnering with individuals and companies to change the way we think about giving. For more information visit Bright Funds.org.