Be generous, but cautious

The end of the year is upon us. This is the time of year when you might consider some last-minute donations before the end of the year. There are many worthy causes, for sure, but use care when trying to decide which ones to support.

Aside from the obvious — the locally known and trusted nonprofits based here in Newton County — there always are many others that could use a helping hand to fund their programs.

The Mississippi Secretary of State’s office encourages residents to visit their website, where a wealth of information about charities is available. Just go to http://www.sos.ms.gov/Charities and you can search individual charities by name to find out, for instance, what percentage of their revenue goes to administrative expenses, or overhead, as opposed to actually reaching those whom the entity purports to serve.

Another  exhaustive  resource  is  available  at  the  Better Business Bureau-sponsored website, www.give.org, which features a national charity report list, reviews of specific charities and more.

Give generously, but do so carefully and wisely.  Use common sense, and if you are uncertain about a particular cause, do your homework.