Using your hard-earned money to help others is a noble gesture. However, bad things also happen to honest and good-willed people like those who make donations. Scammers are always on the lookout for new ways to con people and charity donations are often a successful strategy. Here are some basic tips to avoid getting scammed while donating money to charity.
Don’t Feel Pressured to Donate Right Away
Scammers who dare to take advantage of critical circumstances such as natural disasters or ill people who need expensive treatment rely on one main tactic – pressure. When they try to lure their victims into donating, they often insist on getting money then and there and leverage human emotion to create a sense of urgency. They will explain how vital your contribution is and what impact it will make, but their speech will be centered on the necessity to receive money ASAP.
This sense of urgency is understandable in critical cases, for example, if someone’s life depends on the treatment the funds are being raised for. However, no matter how urgently someone needs money, they can still wait for a few more hours until you make sure you’re donating to the right cause.
The problem is that donation scams often take place in person. Someone approaches you at the entrance to a mall or popular store, they start presenting their case, and you simply feel bad to leave without donating. The truth is you shouldn’t. If a cause is very compelling and the fundraiser seems honest, they will certainly understand that you’re ready to make a donation a bit later after you check their ONG and make sure the cause is legit.
Moreover, you don’t need to explain all these. You simply need to take that person’s contact details and ask them to provide you with the website or social media channels where the fundraising is promoted. This information will allow you to check and learn more about that charity and only donate afterward.
Many people feel pressured and embarrassed to refuse to give money to charity when someone approaches them directly. To circumvent a pushy fundraiser politely, you can simply tell them you’re sorry, but you don’t have any cash. Ask them for a bank account and tell them you’ll make a transfer as soon as you get home.
Do Your Research First
As previously highlighted, it’s useful to ask for more details before you donate money to charity. Any legitimate organization should have a bank account where you can make donations and a website or social media accounts where you can find out more about the purpose, mission, and causes it supports. If you cannot find any of these online, nor any names related to people involved in the organization’s administration, you might be dealing with a scam.
Be Skeptical If the Charity Contacts You
Nowadays, most charities promote the causes they raise funds for on different online platforms or organize fundraising events. Yet, other charities still use the old-fashioned in-person fundraising strategy. Therefore, you shouldn’t automatically dismiss someone who approaches you in a shopping center for a donation.
You should just look out for certain red flags and one of them is being contacted directly over the phone. This usually happens in donation scams. Con artists who impersonate charities can contact you to convince you to make a donation through bank transfer or give them your personal details. If anyone asks you to do this, you should politely end the conversation. Then, you can search for that organization’s phone number and call them to check if the request was legitimate.
Donate Goods Instead of Money
Finally, the best way to make sure you’re not falling for a donation scam is to avoid donating money altogether. Just because you don’t give money, it doesn’t mean you can’t support a cause. You can ask for the physical address of the people the funds are raised for and send them products instead. If it’s an elderly home or an orphanage you want to support, there are plenty of things you could donate. Food, toys, toiletries, clothes, gadgets, etc. Buy these products, send them to people in need and you will surely bring a valuable contribution.
Giving money to charity is a gesture worthy of admiration. To make sure your money goes to the right people. Do a bit of prior research before you choose to support a charity. To make sure you’re not actually supporting some scammers. Post by – Clearwater Management Korea.