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Supposedly, if I send money to a specific organization [name redacted to avoid legitimizing it for Google analytics, in case it ends up a scam], that will help feed children who attend a specific school in Uganda. Supposedly, this charity has a bank account with "CENTENARY BANK BUGIRI BRANCH". I have the bank account number for the charity. How can I check to see if this is a legitimate charity and how do I send money to them?

Additional info: I have lived in the U.S. my whole life. For several years, I have been Facebook friends with "Namukose Caroline", a teacher at "Excel Junior School" in Bugiri, Uganda. She never asked for money but she occasionally comments on hardships, such as draught. Recently, she said it is difficult seeing the students come to school hungry or something like that. So, I offered to donate money to the school.
What is the best way?

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  • If they're a substantial charity, they may have been examined by Charity Navigator or one of the other online sites for this purpose. If not, you would need to obtain their financial documents and review those using the same kind of criteria Charity Navigator does, and investigate how much money actually goes to that school. Assuming the school itself is legitimate, of course. Personally, if you just want to feed kids at a specific school, I'd suggest looking for a way to give money directly to the school rather than having whatever percentage of it go to maintaining the charity.
    – keshlam
    Nov 25, 2022 at 18:11
  • The school is in Uganda. What is your country? What country is the bank in? Nov 25, 2022 at 18:12
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    @Grade 'Eh' Bacon gave a good general answer. If you google this specific organization, very few results come up and the "official" website listed on Facebook is no longer accessible...
    – 0xFEE1DEAD
    Nov 25, 2022 at 19:02

1 Answer 1

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Step 1: how did you find out about this? Was it through random email spam or telemarketer call? If so - any request for money would be a scam.

Step 2: do you have any trusted organization that can 'vouch for' the legitimacy of this charity? ie: givewell.com [no endorsement implied]?

Step 3: Does the contact info from your trusted 'reference' organization match the contact info for this charity? Don't click any links / use any phone numbers supplied to you directly from this particular charity, ensure you are using publicly available data to avoid a scammer pretending to be this charity.

Step 4: what evidence do you have that the charity does what it says? Even a 'legitimate' charity can be a poor way to provide help, in cases where it is poorly run or has minimal evidence of impact.

Side note - often, small-time international charities do not count as charities for your personal tax return in your home country, so a more cost effective method of donation can sometimes be to consider whether a similar [likely larger] organization doing the same thing in Uganda is registered with IRS etc. in your home country - this effectively allows you to increase the magnitude of your donation at no additional cost to you.

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