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Charity Ratings Are Inconsistent – How To Build Up Rating

By David Anttony

Charity ratings are highly unpredictable with highly appraised top ranking charities being overtaken by new charities that suddenly make their appearance in the horizon. Charity Water is a rather new but typical example of this. Innovativeness and the all-powerful Internet are causing charity ratings of brand new charities to skyrocket. A charity that could be relatively unknown today might get rated as the best the next day by the New York Times. And then the rating of that charity might shoot up from nowhere to the top of the chart within the matter of a single day.

As the public can be easily influenced by the charity ratings that the agents of mass media give, it is very easy for a completely new charity to grow very fast and be able to attract a wave of charitable donations to their side. For the same reason, when they become less popular with the media, their charity ratings also go down.

Directory listings of charity rating

With scepticism running quite high with charity watchdogs pinpointing charity problems such as misconduct, having exceptionally high amounts of funds spent on admin or the misappropriation of funds, charity rating directory lists are flourishing. It’s so funny that philanthropic organizations that set out to give to others are now under the eye of charity watchdogs. Philanthropy is becoming a little complicated!

Organisations like and list detailed charity ratings. has a detailed list called the GiveSpot 100 list, which shows its top 100 rated charities. Other organisations like have charity check systems as well as a charity Top Ten list so that look up a charity is easy. is probably the biggest US charity directory offering an amazing array of charity information some free some at a cost. The Better Business Bureau in the USA, despite its name is also charity directory that lists both business and non-profit organisations.

With enough charity rating guides, there is no data shortage for anyone who wants to get information on the 100 top charities, but what constitutes real rating is something different. What in reality makes a charity superior has nothing much to do with its ratings. There are characteristics that make an organization, whether charity based or otherwise, stand out from the rest.

Charity Ratings and belief in the public

A 2005 YouGov poll published that the majority of the British population – 56% – had only a ‘fair amount’ of trust in the global charities like Save the Children and Oxfam . Only 15% of the charities surveyed had ‘a great deal’ of trust – even in the ones that do well in charity ratings.

Charity Watchdog Scares are more common

Belief in charities is at an all time low these days. Public can hardly be blamed for this. Charity watchdogs are ringing warning bells of charity institutions spending even up to 60% of the amount collected on overheads that include big salaries for managers so that very little remains for real charity giving.

Recent analyses reveal that just the cost of raising funds could amount to about’% in UK and 20% in Australia. The studies of the Association of Fundraising Professionals in USA put the amount to be about 30%. Administrative expenses are in addition to this and could be higher. Many charity givers find that this is the main problem, more so when charity giving grabs media attention as was the case in Singapore a couple of years ago. Such unwelcome focus becomes conducive to a decrease in charity giving which is quite unpleasant.

Charity ratings secret exposed

There is little difference between businesses and charities when it comes to attracting money. Their end use of the money is of course different, but their special secrets to attracting it in the first place are much the same.

To promote the charity rating and also to ensure better cash flow, there is a one and only formula – enticement.

When we see an object and would like to buy it, or make an investment in it, or want to connect with it, we tend to take a decision on the basis of how tempting it is to us. If it is very appealing, we might instantly buy it or plan to get it but if it is not all that tempting, we would definitely postpone the idea.

Charity Water is highly attractive and hence why it’s charity-rating sky rocked so quickly and the media got behind the idea. The simple idea of selling a bottle of charity water for a premium price with the extra profit been giving as a donation to the needy to access clean water was highly attractive.

The factors that combine to make Charity Water so enticing, making it popular, are easily decipherable.

* They have the perfect name – Charity Water that makes people easily respond to the obvious passion of the founder to the idea, and his eagerness to share it with others.

* They had a simple, single and clear message and mission – sell water give water – Buy One Give One

* Their focus was on how to solve the problem and not the problem itself. It is important for charities to properly define their focus if they want people to rate them highly. No one has interest in getting their attention turned to the unpleasant things in life. People want a positive focus. So when they are told that they can make a positive change in the lives of others by buying a bottle of water they feel happy.

How to instantly reduce one’s Charity Ratings

The quickest and easiest way to lose attraction or attractiveness and thus your ratings is by focusing on the problem. No one wants to listen to anyone complaining how bad things are. Yet everyone will listen to someone who has high energy, enthusiasm, drive and determination to create something better.

To prove this, all we have to do is look at ourselves in the company of our kids and know how our response is positive when children make a request in an exuberant, polite and eager manner. The same request, if made in an irritating or maudlin way, might elicit a negative response.

The ratings of a charity depend substantially on the image it projects in front of the public. With a motivating and inspiring image people will be swayed to its ideas. They will then be ready to contribute well to the cause of the charity.

Social Enterprise increases Charity Ratings and helps solve Fundraising Problems

Social Enterprise is a new business pattern that evolved a few years ago. This combines trading with a social purpose. This pattern is a result of the interest of some businessmen who have social objectives but does not find the type of functioning of charitable enterprises satisfactory enough.

Many socially conscious businessmen may find the ambiance of a full fledged commercial venture and its decision making mechanism unpalatable. For such people a social enterprise is an apt field where they can use their business acumen and inspiration effectively to solve social problems and usher in changes. One of the best known among such socially aware entrepreneurs is Muhammad Yunus who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006. He was the first business man to be given such recognition.

Buy1GIVE1 commonly known as B1G1 (Buy 1 Give 1), is a global organisation that is a recent entrant into the world of charitable giving. It is a perfect blend of business and valuable causes functioning at the global level. Buy1GIVE1 has so minimised its expenses of fundraising and management that it is able to give for charity all the funds collected. The institution is similar in its attributes to the online organization, which has been promoted by Bill Clinton; unlike conventional charities, Buy1GIVE1 involves direct giving to charities. Many people are convinced that it is a better way for contributing things and receiving richly in return.

Entrepreneurs, who are forever on the lookout for avenues to give in return to the society in effectual ways and to donate to beneficial charitable causes, realise the exemplary worth and strong marketing principles of organisations like Buy1GIVE1. Each and every sale that is made makes a change – not merely philanthropically. It makes a change with its strong impact as well, for every sale that is made becomes a poignant story that is an eye-opener. Buy1Give1 is a far cry from the commercial enterprises that might donate a million dollars to charity, for it lets the customers fully relish the joy of giving. The transaction-based giving of Buy1Give1 is a lesson in perfection.

Businesses like Buy1GIVE1 profile charities and it tends to be the charities or worthy causes as they call them, that are the most attractive that receive the most contributions. Intrinsically business owners understand the power of attraction and they tend to go with non-profit causes that have the best story rather than look at their direct rating. They intrinsically know that their customers will connect with a better story and not ever think about a charities rating.

The Australian company Maple Muesli collaborates with an Indian charity called Midday Meals in the city of Mumbai. Whenever someone buys a bag of muesli, the contribution from it feeds a needy child there. A meal for a child costs only the equivalent of 30 US cents and the charity in this way feeds 125,000 kids in Mumbai every day. This makes the children desist from begging, keeps them away from streets, and makes them remain in school.

Maple Muesli has helped to put Midday Meals on the map as a worthy and well-rated cause in Australia. Maple Muesli share their giving story with all their customers increasing the natural rating of this amazing organisation in Mumbai without Midday Meals doing anything other than feed children. Effective Giving – The Era for Plain Charity Donations is ending

In a matter of a few years, changes are bound to happen in the background of the top 100 charities as more inventive and effectual ways of giving originate. The current scenario offers very few choices on how to give for a charitable purpose. All the available ones are not good enough to make a dent in the existing problems.

Other methods of Charity Ratings

Newer and varied ways of gifting things to others are rated and featured in the table given below. These are Charity Comparison Data.

We have compared and rated a few well-known and less well-known charities and Social Enterprises on areas that are important to their donors.



One of the Top 100 charities in the world – The Salvation Army is a charity that individuals and businesses often donate to directly.

CANDOUR – B – Insufficient candour – Lots of money is donated – but result is not completely quantifiable.

MARKETING VALUE TO BUSINESS – C – Businesses’ one-off contributions to Salvation Army may be mentioned in the press.

EXPENSES FOR RAISING FUNDS -B – Heavy expenses are incurred for raising funds.

DONORS’ CHOICE POTENTIALS -B- For those who want to give directly, there are plenty of charities to choose from.

ABILITY FOR EFFECTING A CHANGE -C – Nothing specific in the activities that is likely to bring about a change.



Product (RED) is a brand licensed to collaborate with companies, and collect money for their Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis in Africa

CANDOUR – B – Insufficient candour – Lots of money is donated – but result is not completely quantifiable.

ADVANTAGE TO BUSINESS – A – People and enterprises by and large prefer to support it as it is promoted by popular idols like Bono and Oprah. End result of marketing is not correctly available.

FUNDRAISING COSTS – C – Spends hundreds of millions of dollars on advertising – could have just given that money to Africa.

DONORS’ CHOICE POTENTIALS – C – Enterprises that partner with them have limited options in where their money should go – all needs are in Africa.

POTENTIAL FOR REAL GLOBAL CHANGE – B – Products (RED) only partner huge companies and all their profits go to Africa.



The Body Shop engages in community trade helping Third World countries; and makes huge donations to charities from their profits.

CANDOUR – B – Insufficient candour – Lots of money is donated – but result is not completely quantifiable.

ADVANTAGE TO BUSINESS – A-tve – Clients are by and large happy to become part of the community trade and are encouraged to buy more – the enterprise could afford to be more visible.

EXPENSES FOR RAISING FUNDS – A – Costs are kept low – Business design is good enough to attract large contributions and further community trade.

DONOR’S CHOICE OF CHARITY – A – Enterprises are at liberty to choose where their contributions should go.

PROMISE FOR GLOBAL CHANGE – B – The potential for giving back to the community is substantial – but not everyone have the impetus and the extra energy to impel the change.



Live Earth was a series of music concerts for a global audience held on July 7, 2007 which kick-started a three-year long campaign to fight climate changes across the world.

TRANSPARENCY – F – According to Intelligent Giving, there were big questions about accountability as to where the proceeds of ticket sales went.

BENEFIT FOR THE BUSINESS – B – It was beneficial to business sponsors as they got good media coverage, but as it was a single event results are not easily measurable.

FUNDRAISING COSTS – C – Spent millions of dollars on advertising on what some say was an unsuccessful event, which had no real goals.

DONORS’ CHOICE POTENTIALS – C – Funds were made available only to three charities.

PROMISE FOR GLOBAL CHANGE – C – Such events can be held just once or at the most once a year. The amount collected generally goes to better known charities.

Buy1GIVE1 (B1G1)


B1G1 is a brand licensed to collaborate with any enterprise – uniting them with any cause across the globe. A fully comprehensive model.

TRANSPARENCY – A – One for one giving ensures funds given are used for what they were intended. Customers know their giving translates into real change (e.g. numbers of trees planted, numbers of children fed).

MARKETING VALUE TO BUSINESS – A+tve – Great marketing value because of:

* Calculable giving * Media interest * Effective stories * Person to person * Returning customers

COSTS OF FUNDRAISING – A+tve – Absolutely no cost – B1G1 can oversee a charity’s needs for raising funds and also manage much of the administration as well. So the funds go entirely to the charity.

DONORS’ CHOICE POTENTIALS – A – Businesses have the option of choosing a particular project to donate to, or give to a worthy cause of their choice like feeding, knowledge training etc.

POTENTIAL FOR REAL GLOBAL CHANGE – A – Exponential. If more businesses partner charities globally, the potential for real change is massive.

You Would Think Giving away Money Would Be Easy!”

Donating money may not seem to be a difficult job – it is just a question of handing over some money as cheque, cash or via the credit card. Still, someone like George Sores, who is as generous a donor as could be, agrees that effectual giving is no cakewalk. Underprivileged communities and countries receive millions of dollars in aid and still the situation remains much the same year after year.

Asking the right questions is necessary for bringing about the required changes. Social entrepreneur Mohammed Yunus, who won the Nobel Peace Prize, has done pioneering work in the field of Microfinance and is revolutionizing the ways in which indigence and environmental problems can be tackled. People like him are showing the way as to how consumerism and social enterprise can change the face of the world. Another such example is the ‘Trade – Not Aid’ of The Body Shop. The ideals of Buy1GIVE1 are equally potent and are a model for charities. Social enterprise needs total recognition.

Bill Gates, when asked how one can make a difference in the world, pointed to the Internet. and Buy1GIVE1 ( are organisations that add value to the giver. With, people can receive email journal updates from the business they have sponsored. This happens with Buy1GIVE1 as well. Businesses also get the added benefit of marketing stories to tell their customers: buy a laptop with us, and we give one computer to someone who cannot afford it.

Next steps to increasing your Charity Ratings

Adopt a questioning mind, hop onto a wired laptop, and with a few hours to spare look at some of the new and amazing giving systems that are being created. Most of these new systems are network based and driven from the Internet.

Today if you are not linked in with powerful global networks through the Internet you are missing out and no matter what your charity rating is today, tomorrow things will change – radically.

There are more and more examples these days of companies rising up from nothing and being sold three years later for over a billion dollars. This was unheard of ten years ago. Today this is becoming a regular occurrence. All these new Internet companies are doing one thing – tapping into global networks or creating global networks.

Buy1GIVE1 (Buy One Give One)

Buy1GIVE1 is a rather new entrant to the world of Social Enterprises and was launched in’97 by a Japanese lady called Masami Sato. Any business can avail a membership in Buy1GIVE1, and membership charges for smaller ventures will only be one dollar a day and donations can be as little as one cent on a sale. Buy1GIVE1 is in the forefront of the Buy One Give One transaction-based giving world movement. Joining hands with Buy1GIVE1 is totally uncomplicated for businesses as well as charity needs. The working pattern of Buy1GIVE1 is perfectly controlled and practical. It connects the products or services of any given business to a needy cause (Buy1GIVE1′s or their own) and after that whenever a sale is closed, it has to be recorded and the contribution percentage sent to the charity at the end of the month or end of quarter year directly or through Buy1GIVE1.

You are strongly advised to create lasting bonds with Buy1GIVE1 and also motivate your business associates to join Buy1GIVE1. It is a singular and wonderful organisation doing stupendous work and no one can afford to ignore it.

A new era of charity giving

Institutions that no one had heard about even a few months ago, are today bombarding the cyber world with booming user acceptance. People strongly prefer have a place on sites like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, YouTube, NING or TipJoy. One should also create strong bonds with companies like Buy1GIVE1, Kiva or The Present. These are the realities of the future which are imperative for sustaining and building charity ratings. Now is the chance to fashion an ideal new future.

Find out more about how Buy1GIVE1 (BOGO) can transform your business using Cause Marketing.. This article, Charity Ratings Are Inconsistent – How To Build Up Rating is released under a creative commons attribution license.

categories: fundraising,Buy1GIVE1,society,cause marketing,business,marketing,BOGO

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Anttony, David "Charity Ratings Are Inconsistent – How To Build Up Rating." Charity Ratings Are Inconsistent – How To Build Up Rating. 20 Jan. 2009. 22 Jul 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Anttony, D (2009, January 20). Charity Ratings Are Inconsistent – How To Build Up Rating. Retrieved July 22, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Anttony, David "Charity Ratings Are Inconsistent – How To Build Up Rating"

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