Better Business Bureau Releases List Of Charities Lacking Transparency

BBB Says Publicly Available Financial Information Isn't Enough

David Goehring (CC-BY)

The Better Business Bureau is out with a list of charities it claims aren’t transparent. The group says well known groups like Teach for America and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation aren’t telling donors information they need to know.

The BBB’s Wise Giving Alliance said publicly available financial information isn’t enough to evaluate a charity’s trustworthiness. Instead, they have 20 unique standards they use to evaluate a charity, said BBB spokesperson Lisa Schiller.

“We believe that charities finances really only tell part of the story of how an organization is performing,” Schiller said. “It certainly makes a difference to see if the organization has provided the information we’re asking — their fundraising expenses, program expenses, board of directors, conflict of interest.”

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A statement from Teach for America — which operates around the country, including in Milwaukee — said it has a strong commitment to transparency and financial stewardship. The organization has repeatedly gotten a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator.

Other charities on the list include: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, NeighborWorks America, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, City Year, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Pact and Local Initiatives Support Coalition.

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