When it comes to making donations, senior donors are a powerful force. In the U.S., those aged 65 and older account for more than half of all charitable donations, and that number is only going to grow as the population ages. If you’re looking to donate, there are a few things you should keep in mind. This guide will provide you with information on how to make donations to charities as a senior citizen.
Research Before You Give
First and foremost, always do your research before giving. Make sure you know where your money is going and what it will be used for. Unfortunately, there are plenty of scams out there that target donors in independent living communities. So, take the time to read up on the organization and ensure its practices align with your values. Look for organizations that have been around for a while and have a good reputation.
Here are some things to keep in mind when giving donations, including:
- How will my donation be used?
- What is the charity’s rating from independent
- organizations like Charity Navigator or GuideStar?
- What is the charity’s overhead cost?
- Does the charity have any scandals or negative press associated with it?
Don’t Succumb To Pressure Tactics
Seniors can be an especially lucrative target for scammers when it comes to donating to charities. Many older adults are unfamiliar with how to spot a scam and may be more likely to contribute out of a sense of guilt or pity.
One key way to avoid being scammed is never to succumb to pressure tactics. Charities that use high-pressure tactics are often not legitimate. If a charity is asking for an immediate donation, be suspicious.
If you have any doubts, contact the Better Business Bureau or the National Center for Charitable Statistics to verify the charity’s legitimacy.
Verify Any Claim That You’ve Contributed In The Past
Some people may try to take advantage of you by asking for donations and not following through on their promises. One way to prevent this is to verify any claim that the person has made about donating in the past. This can be done by researching the organization or charity they mention or contacting the institution they say they donated to. If there are no donation records, it may be best not to give them any money.
Do Not Feel Compelled To Give Because You Receive A Gift
It’s important to remember that your donation is a way of supporting the charity and its work, not just a way of thanking the person who gave you a gift. If you’re not sure whether or not to donate, do some research into the charity and its work before deciding.
Be Careful Of Imposters
Scammers take advantage of you by pretending to be from a legitimate charity or organization and asking for donations. This can be especially difficult for people who want to help those in need but may not be sure how to tell if a caller is legitimate.
Here are a few tips to help protect yourself from imposter scammers:
- Don’t give out personal information over the phone, such as your Social Security number or bank account details.
- Be suspicious of callers who ask for donations immediately and don’t give you time to research the charity.
- Check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to see if the charity is registered and has a good rating.