Donating to Breast Cancer Charities: What Should I Know?
We’re fortunate enough to say that since 2000, there have been far fewer cases of breast cancer in the United States. This is partially due to intensive fundraising efforts.
These efforts have funneled money into research, which has led to major breakthroughs in treatments for this disease. As well, the advocacy and activism of breast cancer organizations have made more women aware of the disease. This increased level of advocacy and activism has improved rates of early testing.
What to Look for in Charity
If you feel passionate about this cause, there are many places where your money can do a lot of good. However, it’s important to research these organizations carefully, so you know exactly where your money is going.
If you choose to donate to a breast cancer charity, make sure that:
- The organization is a registered 501(c)(3) charity;
- The organization puts at least 75 cents of every dollar raised towards their programming and goals, and;
- The organization is transparent about their financials; if the information isn’t listed on their website, you can use a third-party tool like Charity Navigator to evaluate whether they’re doing what they say they’re doing with your money.
How to Avoid Charity Scams
You probably want to avoid:
- Organizations that say they spend 100 percent of donations to their programs. That’s almost impossible and chances are they’re only saying it to make people feel good.
- Organizations that use less than 75 percent of their donations for their programs. If their overhead costs are too high, you may be funding the CEO’s lavish lifestyle instead of the organization’s meaningful programs.
- Organizations that spend more than $15 on advertising and marketing for every $100 they receive in donations.
6 Trusted Breast Cancer Charities
Here are some of the most reputable breast cancer charities in the United States today.
1. Breast Cancer Research Foundation
Breast cancer charities are generally split into two groups. They are:
- Those that focus on funding research, and;
- Those whose mandate is to improve the lives of patients who already have the disease.
The Breast Cancer Research Foundation exists solely to fund the essential work that’s been done on breast cancer, its origins, and any potential cures. They have an extremely high trustworthy rating and spend 90 cents from every dollar fundraised on their programs. Right now, they’re funding around 300 researchers’ work.
2. National Breast Cancer Foundation
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the National Breast Cancer Foundation does not support research. Instead, it has made it their mission to put their substantial resources towards supporting women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer.
Additionally, they support early detection efforts by raising awareness about the disease and fund clinics that offer free mammograms. They’ve established several patient navigator programs, which offer support to women who have been newly diagnosed as they seek the best treatment possible.
The National Breast Cancer Foundation has an excellent financial transparency rating. Plus, they spend 80.8 cents of every dollar on their programs
3. National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund
The National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund has set itself an ambitious goal to eradicate breast cancer by 2020. They hope to accomplish this goal by organizing summits and workshops to connect doctors, politicians, and researchers. Right now, they spend 83.1 percent of their total expenses on their programs, so you know your money will be well used.
Having been in operation since 1991, they have raised a total of $3.6 billion for breast cancer research. Moreover, they’ve organized 600 individual chapters, with more than 60,000 members in total.
Even if they don’t meet their 2020 deadline for eradicating breast cancer, you know your donation will go to a worthy organization.
4. Breast Cancer Prevention Partners
Forward-thinking charity Breast Cancer Prevention Partners is deeply engaged in the issue of cancer-causing chemicals. As such, their goal is to remove these chemicals from our households through advocacy and research.
This science-based organization offers tons of resources for people looking to learn more about these chemicals, as well as the environmental factors that have been linked to breast cancer. 79.3 cents from every dollar goes to their programs. Plus, they’re extremely efficient fundraisers.
5. Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation
The Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation uses its fundraising dollars to plot the most effective route towards breast cancer prevention.
While they have many different projects on the go, they are excellent at mobilizing their networks of engaged patrons. In fact, they’re supporting several studies and have partnered with organizations. On such partnership is with the NIH. The two organizations offer events like the International Symposium on the Breast, which brings together clinicians, politicians, and health care advocates in a think-tank focused on breast health.
The Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation spends 82.5 cents of every dollar on these vital programs.
6. Breast Cancer Alliance
One of the top funders of breast cancer studies in the United States is the Breast Cancer Alliance. This 20-year-old organization offers grants and fellowships to clinical doctors and research scientists whose work focuses on early-stage breast cancer or breast health.
So far, they’ve awarded a total of $11.5 million to these brilliant minds. In addition to these funds, they have made it a goal to foster young talent and attract as many new doctors as possible to the field of breast health.
The Breast Cancer Alliance spends 81.6 percent of their earnings on these programs, while only 10.3 percent on their administrative expenses. This is a great margin.