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AFP Introduces Wise Giving Website to Help Public With Philanthropy

December 7, 2010

(Arlington, VA) The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) today unveiled its new wise giving website, Change the World With a Giving-and Wise-Heart (http://www.afpnet.org/GivingHeart) designed to help donors think proactively about philanthropy and how they want to improve their communities through giving and volunteering.

"Many consumers take their time when deciding whether or not to buy a product, but they often rush into giving decisions or respond immediately to the most recent appeal," said Paulette V. Maehara, CFRE, CAE, president and CEO of AFP. "Change the World With a Giving-and Wise-Heart encourages people to have a greater impact in their philanthropy by taking their time, thinking about what they want to accomplish and developing a giving plan." 

The Change the World with a Giving-and Wise-Heart website contains a variety of information on how donors can make smart choices in their philanthropy, including guidance such as The Five P's of Wise Giving and 25 Ways to Make Your Gifts Go Further. Donors can learn about different ways they can support charities, such as through matching gifts, payroll giving, giving circles, online games and click-a-day websites, credit card points and even regifting. Another important focus of the site is wise giving and being able to spot legitimate organizations. Documents such as 25 Ways to Give Wisely and the Donor Bill of Rights provides donors with information on how to ensure they're giving to worthy charities and the responsibilities a charity has during the fundraising and giving process. The website also tackles the issue of fundraising costs and how donors should examine costs. 

"Donors should realize that nearly all charities are legitimate, and that fundraising fraud makes up less than one percent of all complaints received annually by the Federal Trade Commission," said Maehara. "But it pays to be careful, and Change the World With a Giving-and Wise-Heart gives donors the straight talk on the kinds of things they should be looking for when they contribute, including fundraising costs and how to examine them." 

The website contains not only just written documents, but short slide and audio presentations that summarize many of the key points. The campaign was inspired by National Philanthropy Day®, celebrated across North American in more than 100 communities on Nov. 15, and its theme, Change the World With a Giving Heart. 

Effective and wise giving is especially important during the holiday season when, according to studies by AFP, charities typically receive between one-third and one-half of their total annual contributions. AFP encourages the public to use the Change the World With a Giving-and Wise-Heart website before they make their holiday charitable gifts, and then throughout the year in all of their giving decisions. 

Contacts:
Michael Nilsen
Vice President, Public Affairs
(425) 890-6628

John Skendall
Assistant, Public Affairs
(800) 666-3863, ext. 445

The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) represents over 30,000 members in 222 chapters throughout the world, working to advance philanthropy through advocacy, research, education and certification programs. The association fosters development and growth of fundraising professionals and promotes high ethical standards in the fundraising profession. For more information, go to www.afpnet.org.



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