Do you have one of those friends who doesn't donate to charity because he's so darn sure that the money just goes to waste? "They just spend all the charity money on candy," says your friend. He may not say that, but I'm sure he says something equally bizarre.
But maybe this friend and a couple 20/20 episodes have gotten to you, and now you are a bit wary about who you donate to. Nobody wants their charity money being spent of candy. Well, there is an organization out there called the American Institute of Philanthropy that gives charities letter grades based on rigorous analysis and criteria.
Groups included on the Top-Rated list generally spend 75% or more of their budgets on programs, spend $25 or less to raise $100 in public support, do not hold excessive assets in reserve, and receive "open-book" status for disclosure of basic financial information and documents to AIP.
With help from watchdog groups like this one, you don't have to let your candy conspiracy friend dissuade you from giving to environmental charities.
The Top-Rated Environmental Charities
Environmental Charities that Received an A+
- Conservation Fund
- Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
- Trust for Public Land
Environmental Charities that Received an A
- Conservation International Foundation
- Earth Island Institute
- Greenpeace Fund
- Izaak Walton League of America
- Rain Forest Action Network
- Sierra Club Foundation
- World Resources Institute
Environmental Charities that Received an A-
- Alaska Conservation Foundation
- American Forests
- Ducks Unlimited
- Nature Conservancy
- Rain Forest Alliance
- Trout Unlimited
Environmental Charities that Received a B+
- American Wildlife Foundation
- Chesapeake Bay Foundation
- Environmental Defense Fund
- Keep American Beautiful
- National Arbor Day Foundation
- Student Conservation Association
Source: CharityWatch.org, planetgreen.discovery.com