Before the checkbooks come out, Emily Cote with the New York Council of Nonprofits says do your homework.
Cote even suggests going a step further by donating time.
Also, don’t feel pressured. Melanie McGovern with the Better Business Bureau said to check out the organizations 990, a tax form that gives insight into the company.
“It’s always good to be mindful this time of year that, you know, people are very generous and scammers take advantage of that” McGovern said.
A report from New York’s attorney general found some professional fundraisers retain nearly one-third of charitable donations while others keep nearly half.