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      05-19-2011, 11:11 PM   #1
leJUNd
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How do you know if a charity is legit ?

people that collect donations? How do you know if they are legit?
I always wondered this... NOT sure if I am being too suspicious but some of these people... they make me wonder...
I am specifically talking about people that collect donation at Santa Monica 3rd street promenade... they are always there day and night. But I have seen these groups wherever there are lot of people.

They are always somewhat aggressive in the way they approach people and I have a feeling they kind of target tourists that don't speak english. They carry a laminated information sheet with different languages that basically says "help".

I have been stopped a few times and one time gave the guy a 5 (more than 10 years ago). I know this isn't much but I was making 6.75 plus tips. He saw a 20 in my wallet and asked me why I couldn't give him the 20... Shouldn't they be happy with whatever amount I am comfortable giving? This really bothered me. After this incident I just say no thanks and pass by.

I had an incident today... where I was in a hurry because I was late for my appointment at the genius bar... I was walking swiftly and I guess he saw it as me trying to avoid him. He made some comment... didn't really hear what he said but I was some what bothered by it. Not because what he said; i didn't hear, but because the way they do their business. I mean... if your asking donation from people, shouldn't you do it with some sincerity or manner? I mean whenever I am in 3rd st promenade... I have a feeling they are just harassing people, sometimes chasing people. I am usually a charitable guy... if I can trust that it's legit charity, I will happily donate whatever amount and thank them for being out there... I understand that it's hard to stop people for donation but the way that they conduct themselves out there is kinda shady?


Are there any questions I can ask that will confirm that they are legitimate?

sorry for the long post
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      05-19-2011, 11:25 PM   #2
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You can google them.

You can ask them for address and website to where you can send a check.

Ask them what the money exactly is used for.

Legitimate charities will carry a pamphlet(sp) and will talk your ear off as to what they do, have done and tell you stories about how they saved a family of four from being homeless, etc etc.



A legitimate cause would be, is when you see a bunch of fireman out side of the firehouse walking around with a boot asking for donations towards families whos home got burned down in fire or for kids with cancer.
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      05-19-2011, 11:27 PM   #3
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      05-19-2011, 11:42 PM   #4
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when fredmlau robs it
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      05-20-2011, 02:14 AM   #5
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Depending on your definition of "Legit"?

I remember back a few years, my boss was looking into starting a charity. I found out something disturbing. In Ohio, you only had to give 5% of the money you collect to the charity you're coded for.

5%!!! So you give me a $100 donation. $5 goes to Timmy for his cancer research and $95 goes to my "Administration expense."

LEGIT...YUP
BULLSHIT...YUP

Do some research.

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      05-20-2011, 02:18 AM   #6
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You can tell the guy to shut the fuck up if he asks you why you don't give him the $20. You're donating and the principle still counts. I'd get in his face if he said that to me. No e-thug. For serial.

I can't comment about legitimacy.
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      05-20-2011, 10:25 AM   #7
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Theres shit like that all over. The one I see the most is the little ghetto kids with the boxes of candy. Some of them have this legit cardboard box with a charities name on it. Others I see have it in some sort of random container. The cardboard box I kind of trust. The container kids....not so much. They all have some laminated bullshit card with them. Sometimes I'll give sometimes I wont. But they're usually just asking for a dollar for a candy bar.

In AZ, which I've never seen before, regular teenagers just ask around asking people for change. I'm talking kids wearing whatever the latest clothing style is and listening to an ipod or some shit. Its retarded. I tell them to fuckthemselves and get a job.
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      05-20-2011, 10:33 AM   #8
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No charities are legit, or at least "legit" charities can use your money in ways you definitely would not want them to any time they want.
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      05-20-2011, 10:48 AM   #9
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No charities are legit, or at least "legit" charities can use your money in ways you definitely would not want them to any time they want.
There are plenty of charities who use money prudently, but you're correct, when you donate, you're consenting for the charity to use the money how they deem fit. Which makes sense, because it's their money - you gave it to them. There are expenses to running a charity above and beyond what the end "beneficiary" of the charity will receive - administration, promotion, advertising/sponsorship, etc are all real and necessary expenses, without which, the end beneficiary likely will not receive anything.

How prudently these expenses are managed, is a whole different thing, and I'm not aware that charitable foundations have public books. In the end, use your best judgement, and get a receipt for your tax deduction.
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      05-20-2011, 10:53 AM   #10
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There are plenty of charities who use money prudently, but you're correct, when you donate, you're consenting for the charity to use the money how they deem fit. Which makes sense, because it's their money - you gave it to them. There are expenses to running a charity above and beyond what the end "beneficiary" of the charity will receive - administration, promotion, advertising/sponsorship, etc are all real and necessary expenses, without which, the end beneficiary likely will not receive anything.

How prudently these expenses are managed, is a whole different thing, and I'm not aware that charitable foundations have public books. In the end, use your best judgement, and get a receipt for your tax deduction.
In lay man's terms, it is a great way to hide money. It is a great way to make money. Many wealthy people were made by their charities. However, many wealthy people also start charities.

Now that I think of it... I am going to start an NPO.
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      05-20-2011, 11:19 AM   #11
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most charities that are out collecting on the street are bullshit. unless you know the name: salvation army, goodwill, united way, march of dimes. and some will even argue that those charities are bullshit, too. the best thing is to not donate to charities on the street but rather donate online or something directly to a legit charity. it's cold but true.

anyone hassling you to donate 20 bucks at the 3rd street promenade has got to be a hustler. legit charities tell their people not to put a hard sell on you like that, it makes them look bad and hurts donations in the long run.
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      05-20-2011, 11:20 AM   #12
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Begging is begging.

I give to my electric company for a fund to help folks that can't pay their bills, I fill the boot when the fire fighters are collecting, and I donate every year to my DAV chapter.

I give NOTHING to random panhandlers. A charity beggar is no more deserving than a hungry guy on the corner.
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      05-29-2011, 01:49 AM   #13
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..seriously charity...

I can feel bad for someone, but I will not give my money to charity so some scum bag can potentially run off with it.
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      05-29-2011, 02:20 AM   #14
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The only thing I give to those guys on 3rd St Promenade are my left over meals I don't finish.
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