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Posts Tagged ‘charitable organizations’

What if I Can’t Afford a Veterinarian?

March 3rd, 2011 3 comments

What can a pet owner do if he or she cannot afford the expenses associated with veterinary care?

We love our animals and tend to treat them as cherished members of our families.  And when they get sick or injured, we want to give them the best possible care to ease their suffering and help them heal. 

Need Financial Help With Vet Bills?

But proper veterinary care can be expensive.  Where can families turn when faced with the need for veterinary care they cannot afford?  In her article “Help Paying Vet Bills,” author Brenda Reeves explains that there are many options for families facing challenging financial times along with the added stress of a sick or injured pet. 

Reeves provides valuable information about a number of organizations that offer help in various ways to cover the cost of veterinary care.  Along with helpful descriptions of the services offered by the different organizations, Reeves also includes contact information.

One of our favorite charitable organizations is Frankie’s Friends Charitable Pet Foundation.  Their Happy Tails fund helps “otherwise loving and responsible families who cannot afford the cost” of veterinary care.  (This group has no affiliation with Frankie the Law Dog.)

Check out these groups, make a donation if you can, and pass along this information to friends and family who might need their services.

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Categories: Dog Health

How to Make Wise Choices About Charitable Donations

November 25th, 2009 No comments

Donating to a Shelter?  Make Sure Your Money Goes to the Dogs

Donating to a Shelter? Make Sure Your Money Goes to the Dogs

Make Sure Your Charitable Donation Really Helps Those in Need

During the holiday season, many people feel moved to open their hearts and wallets to try and help those who are less fortunate.  There are many wonderful charitable organizations that do a lot of good work with the monetary donations people provide.

There are other charitable organizations that end up spending most of the money they receive on fund-raising and other expenses.  Not that there is anything inherently wrong with administrative spending and fund-raising.  After all, there are expenses involved in running a charity, and fund-raising plays an important role in helping many charities stay alive.

BBB Says at Least 65% Should go to Charitable Activities

But how much is too much for a charity to spend on telemarketers and other fund-raising efforts?  The Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance Standards for Charity Accountability suggests that charitable organizations should spend at least 65% of their total expenses on program activities (the actual “charity” part of the equation), and no more than 35% of the money you donate on fund-raising.

Want to Know Where Your Money is Going When You Donate to Charity?

If you want to know how your donations of money are being used by a charity, there are a couple of easy ways to find out.  Charities that meet all of the BBB’s Standards for Charity Accountability can receive accreditation through the BBB.  The website provides a National Charity Report Index that makes it easy to search for information about charities that are BBB accredited.

Charities are not legally required to submit information and seek accreditation through the BBB, but many reputable charities do so.  If a charity has received BBB accreditation, you can be sure that most of the money you donate to the charity will be going to the actual work of the charity.

Charity Navigator is an independent charity evaluator that provides information about many of the largest charities in the United States.  They have a searchable database that gives a detailed breakdown of each listed charity’s revenue and how that revenue is used.  Charity Navigator evaluates only public charities in the U.S. (that is, charities that are tax exempt under § 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and that must file IRS Form 990).

Another good source of information about public charities can come from your state’s government websites.  Many states require that all public charities that solicit donations within the state comply with the state’s charity registration laws.  For example, Florida’s Solicitation of Contributions Act regulates the solicitation of public contributions and requires full disclosure of certain types of information from those who solicit charitable contributions in Florida.

The Florida Division of Consumer Services website has a great deal of valuable information, including a Gift Giver’s Guide that allows Floridians to access information about specific charities registered in Florida.

Incidentally, we decided to check the State of Florida registration for Animal Friends Society, Inc. The rescue organization from which we adopted Lucy, devotes an impressive 89% of its total revenue to program services.  By doing a little homework, I know that when I give to Animal Friends Society, the money really goes to the dogs.

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