SAN ANTONIO -- Donations for the victims of Superstorm Sandy are still pouring in. As of Friday morning, the American Red Cross had raised $145-million and delivered more than 6 million meals.
The Red Cross let's you know where your money is going, but that's not always the case with other groups. If you want to make every penny of your donation count, here's a few things to keep in mind:
- Dinnertime calls. Avoid those calls you get at dinner time asking for donations. Usually, behind every caller is a call center that charges the non-profit a lot of money to make those calls.
- Texting. Texting in a donation is the hottest thing right now, but MSN Money says the donation can take months to actually make it to the non-profit's account, and the company that processes the text takes a cut.
- Debit/Credit. A similar thing happens when you use a debit or credit card. It's convenient, but someone has to process the transaction. The cost of that takes away from the total amount making it to the actual people you're trying to help.
- Items vs cash. If you like to pack up your used clothing for donation, a little cash can probably go farther. Most charities can stretch a dollar further than you can because they've formed relationships with vendors.