What are the best charities that really make a difference

I didn’t really know which category to put this in,but do any CAF members have any charity recommendations to donate to that really make a difference to improving people’s lives longterm.

Sometimes it’s hard to know which ones really help change people’s situations vs taking high admin costs etc.

Catholic Charities.

Local parishes.

Supporting parishes, schools, orphanages, etc. The Mary Mother of God Mission Society is dear to my heart.

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Is this something that can be donated to online @TheLittleLady?

I googled Catholic Charities Diocese of and this was the first to pop up.


Most Dioceses have a web portal for donations

MMOG is at https://vladmission.org

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Search here I think we have a post that has a lot listed.

Remember, higher admin costs are not always pitted against good service. It is a fallacy that keeping “admin” costs low always benefits the service recipient. Low wages = high turnover = disruption in services. Low admin = less technology = less innovation in services and less efficiency.

So, don’t always pit those two things against each other. It can be a false dichotomy.


The Catholic Book Fair is in need of donations and volunteers to expand their book catalog with Math, Science and the Saints! The profit from book sales go to the school or ministry hosting the book fair or to schools that serve disadvantaged children.

Many Catholic schools used secular book fairs that distribute books against the Catholic or they used no book fair because there was no Christian/Catholic alternative. The Catholic Book Fair provides a Catholic
Safe alternative to increase and restore the importance of Christian values in reading and promote literacy in a Catholic safe way. Secular book fairs are promoting alternative life styles to children staring as early as
Preschool. The Catholic Book Fair promotes
Family values as Gods and nature intends us to have.

God bless you!


Ok.Somehow I always perceived it as high admin costs means they are paying very high salaries for executives.
Some people are ok with this,and think it’s necessary for the charity to have marketing expert “talent” and therefor get more for the charity but I like the old fashioned approach where charity was volunteers and not a “business structure”.
Maybe I am just being romantic though and perhaps the first approach is what’s needed today.

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Founded by Catholics, they do child sponsorship. Their goal is to help people be lifted out of poverty, not just through financial support, but by helping them get jobs. Excellent charity.


Thank you Father. That’s a new one I hadn’t heard of.

Looks good🙏

That could be. Or it could be that they are investing in other things like technology, good salaries for program staff, benefits, infrastructure, etc.

You can’t make assumptions without knowing the details of that organization. Also, “high” salaries for executives also aren’t necessarily a bad thing. If you pay a really low salary to an executive, well you get what you pay for. While executives in non-profits don’t make nearly the salary of a for profit, running a non-profit still needs all the skills and experience of a qualified professional. If you pay peanuts, you get what you pay for in a lot of cases. “Executives” that lack business acumen, experience, skills, and abilities.

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Those sorts of local charities cannot scale.

To provide large scale services, you need stable, paid staff. All volunteer organizations are great for very small, local endeavors. But they are going to be continually resource strapped and unable to grow.

I can tell you that 50 years ago, accounting in parishes was in a simple checkbook format. They didn’t worry about liability, safe environment, asbestos, etc. They had few demands from the diocese. Now-- it’s very different.

In non-profits, it’s the same. You need professional accounting services, you have to file paperwork with the IRS, state, and even local entities. You have to be licensed, have background checks, follow EEOC laws for human resources, you need technology and then you need to protect that from hacking and intrusion. You need facilities, and those need insurance (property and liability).

The list goes on.

It ain’t your grandma’s knitting circle anymore.


I often use Charity Navigator to do an initial evaluation of a charity. It breaks down administrative costs and tons of financial information as well as the charity’s goals and accomplishments. It star rates them, too.

I agree with @1ke, this shouldn’t be the only criteria but it gives a good start. When I find one I think I’ll like, I visit the website next. I ask around if I can. I search Facebook for comments on it. It doesn’t take as long as this sounds. You can get a pretty good idea in less than a half an hour.

Then I get out my checkbook!

How can a ceo on a $100k plus salary have any empathy to people living on a couple of dollars a day. Charities ask for donations of time, money and stock, people give these things voluntarily to help people in need. I believe charity ceo’s should lead by example and earn a working mans wage. Their passion should be in helping people, and not living on a luxury wage.


Caritas Internationalis:

Perhaps getting to know some of the benefactors in your area can answer that question.

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May I suggest Food For The Poor? I’ve given to them for a few years now. Check them out Food for the Poor

Here’s their financial info Financial Info Food for the Poor

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I would say one of the biggest one worldwide is CARITAS. It operates in many countries, and is focused on helping poor people.

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