'Giving Tuesday' kicks off the holiday season of giving in Ohio, - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

'Giving Tuesday' kicks off the holiday season of giving in Ohio, across the nation

Giving Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017. (Source: WOIO) Giving Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017. (Source: WOIO)
Organizers at the Boys and Girls Club say they couldn't keep their doors open without donations. (Source: WOIO) Organizers at the Boys and Girls Club say they couldn't keep their doors open without donations. (Source: WOIO)

Today is not only Tuesday but Giving Tuesday.

Much like retailers gear up for Black Friday, charities look forward to Giving Tuesday.

It's a day when millions of people, worldwide support organizations and causes that matter to them the most. 

While giving is always good, the Better Business Bureau has a few tips before you make your holiday giving decisions:

  • Look for BBB Accredited Charities. These charities have undergone a thorough review to meet BBB's 20 Standards for Charity Accountability which include ethical fundraising, governance and use of donations. Check out local charities at bbb.org/cleveland. BBB charity reports contain information on an organization's programs, finances, governance, and more.
  • Do not be fooled by low overhead claims. Some charities spend smaller portions of their annual budgets on fundraising and administration, yet still fail to meet one or more of the BBB's twenty Standards for Charity Accountability.
  • Get the charity's exact name. With so many charities in existence, mistaken identity is a common problem. Thousands of charities have “cancer” in their name, for example, but no connection with one another. Resist pressure to give on the spot, whether from a telemarketer or door-to-door solicitor.
  • Do not click on links or downloads. If you get an email from an unfamiliar organization asking for a contribution, do not click on links or download attachments. You could download viruses to your computer. Scammers send out millions of fake ‘phishing' emails every day to steal your personal information.
  • Press for specifics. If the charity says it's helping the homeless, for example, ask how and where it's working. Check websites for basics. A charity's mission, program and finances should be available on its site. If not, check for a report at www.give.org, BBB's repository of reports on nationally operating charities.

Check with the Attorney General. Any organization located in or soliciting donations in Ohio must be registered with the Ohio Attorney General. You can check at http://charitableregistration.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Charities/Research-Charities.aspx

Make sure your donations are tax deductible. Don't assume that every soliciting organization is tax exempt as a charity. You can readily check an organization's tax status at www.irs.gov/app/eos.

How charitable is the state you live in? WalletHub released its report on 2017’s Most Charitable States, along with its Charity Calculator:

  1. Utah
  2. Maryland  
  3. Minnesota  
  4. Wyoming
  5. Wisconsin
  6. Washington
  7. Virginia
  8. South Dakota 
  9. Georgia  
  10. Oklahoma
  11. Connecticut
  12. Kansas
  13. New Hampshire
  14. Oregon
  15. New York
  16. Ohio
  17. North Dakota
  18. Missouri
  19. South Carolina
  20. Nebraska

To view the FULL REPORT click here.

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