As Hurricane Dorian approaches the Florida coast, BBB Wise Giving Alliance (BBB’s Give.org) and Better Business Bureau encourage donors to support experienced disaster relief organizations. It’s also important for charity disaster appeals to be clear about what activities their support will fund.”
“As Dorian is predicted to be a devastating storm,” notes Art Taylor, president and CEO of BBB’s Give.org. “most of us will be motivated to provide immediate help. Donations to experienced disaster relief efforts are the best option to achieve that goal.”
In addition, Taylor said “A recent public survey we distributed earlier this year shows that only 24% of individuals say charity disaster relief appeals are very clear. So, we also encourage charities to make sure their relief solicitations explain the nature of their disaster assistance activities.
In previous weather disasters, Give.org has seen crowdfunding posts from individuals claiming to raise funds so they can deliver and distribute water, food and flashlights to impacted areas. Even if sincere, such efforts may risk lives, complicate access by professional efforts and potentially divert donations that could be directed in more helpful ways.”
“Donors should watch out for newly created organizations that emerge that are either inexperienced in addressing disasters or may be seeking to deceive donors at a vulnerable time,” Taylor said.
BBB also expects to see price-gougers and “storm chasers” looking to make a quick buck off of preparation and clean-up efforts (BBB.org/Storm). Consumers can report suspected scams to BBB Scam Tracker ( BBB.org/ScamTracker) or the office of the Attorney General in their state.
BBB Wise Giving Alliance suggests that donors keep the following tips in mind to help avoid questionable appeals for support:
For additional disaster giving tips visit this link at Give.org
The emergency phase of a disaster is just the beginning. Full recovery from a disaster will be a long-term effort that can take many months or years to accomplish, depending on the extent of the damage.
The following is a list of BBB Accredited Charities (i.e., organizations that meet the 20 BBB Standards for Charity Accountability) that announce (on their websites) their readiness to assist with Hurricane Dorian relief assistance. This list will be updated as additional relief efforts come to BBB’s Give.org’s attention.
American Red Cross
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Humane Society of the United States
Heart to Heart International
Save the Children