Catholic Charities of Buffalo has met Better Business Bureau's (BBB) 20 Standards for Charity Accountability and is a BBB Accredited Charity.
The high standards, developed by BBB Wise Giving Alliance (BBB WGA), offer information that can help donors to feel confident they are making sound giving decisions.
The rigorous evaluation is based on four main categories, governance, mission effectiveness, charity finances and fund-raising, and informational materials.
Dennis Walczyk, Catholic Charities chief executive officer, said, "We are pleased to have successfully fulfilled all standards as a first-time applicant of the Charity Review Program, including adequate board oversight, effectiveness of policy, precise expense reporting, as well as detailed expense breakdown, accurate fundraising materials and protecting donor privacy."
Through the Standards of Charity Accountability, BBB WGA encourages fair and honest solicitation practices, promotes ethical conduct by charitable organizations and advances support of philanthropy.
According to a 2014 survey by Software Advice, Inc., a provider of detailed reviews for donor management software buyers, 55 percent of donors look for rating seals on charity websites before donating. A post about the survey on one of Software Advice's blogs, The Able Altruist, also stated, "the BBB WGA seal is, upon first impression, most likely to influence a person's decision to donate" and it received the highest rating of five stars.
"Catholic Charities considers the Better Business Bureau accreditation significant, knowing the organization is well respected in the community," said Sr. Mary McCarrick, OSF, Catholic Charities diocesan director. "Just as people consult BBB when looking for a service or product, they can also rely on this rating to ensure a particular not-for-profit organization is a wise investment before donating."
BBB WGA is an association of charities formed through the merger of the National Charities Information Bureau and the Council of Better Business Bureaus' Foundation, along with its Philanthropic Advisory Service. The Alliance evaluates more than 1,200 national charities free of charge. The reports can be found on www.bbb.org or www.give.org.
BBB strives to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust by celebrating business role models, creating a community of trustworthy businesses and charities, and addressing substandard business behavior.
Catholic Charities of Buffalo's full Charity Review can be viewed online at www.bbb.org.
For 91 years, Catholic Charities has been making a difference for people of every faith and ethnicity in Western New York. Catholic Charities empowers children, families and seniors to achieve meaningful, healthy and productive lives. In all situations, Catholic Charities delivers support to meet immediate needs, and then assess its clients for other needs to ensure long-term success. It is the most comprehensive human service provider serving Western New York. For five years, Catholic Charities attained the highest possible rating (four stars) from Charity Navigator for sound fiscal management. Catholic Charities also receives highest ratings for quality of service from the Council on Accreditation.