Choosing a Charity: An Overview

Are you planning on holding a garage sale for charity?  You may already have one in mind, in which case your task in choosing a charity is already over.  However, if you're just wanting to do some good deeds, you'll want to pick out the perfect charity to donate all your earnings from.  How do you choose from all the great organizations out there?  The following are some criteria that will help you make a decision.

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 Choose something close to your heart.  Whether it's because the charity is an integral part of your hometown community or because you yourself were a foster kid or because your dogs were almost put down before you adopted them (and you saved them!), the reason you want to help out a specific charity should be something special to you.  Don't be ashamed to choose a very specific way of helping out that really caters to your interests -- such as literacy through a certain type of literature, or the no-kill shelter that saved your childhood dog. has a rigorous rating system through which they put national charities (you can visit the page at the link below).  The top-rated ones tend to have a great reach, spend a high percentage of donations towards the actual cause, and have good fundraising policies.  While the American Institute of Philanthropy's ratings should not be your sole guide when choosing a charity, it can certainly point you in the right direction.

 Many charities have easy online donation options now, and you should choose a charity that makes it convenient for you to give to them.  Nowadays, most organizations have a website, so track your charity's page down online and check out their donation options.  After your sale, you can deposit all your change in the bank and then use Paypal to donate.

 If you aren't experienced with putting on fundraising events, you may need a little assistance in spreading the word (both about the sale itself and the charity you're supporting).  Many non-profits have packages they will happily put together for you that will help you accomplish those tasks.  If you can, find a charity that will help you help them, because then half your legwork will be done.

 Now that you've picked your charity, it's time to start putting together the sale itself.  Come on over to, where you can get tons of helpful tips and tricks and then list your sale for absolutely free on our national map!


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