Interesting article on the WSJ site today about the impact of Madoff on future donations. After Madoff, Donors Grow Wary of Giving:
That’s changing amid a distressed economy and the disturbing news that many high-profile nonprofits, including the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity, Yeshiva University and Steven Spielberg’s Wunderkinder Foundation, were hurt by Mr. Madoff’s alleged $50 billion Ponzi scheme. Now, an increasing number of donors are losing confidence in the ability of such groups to safeguard their money.
The article discusses how many donors are asking pointed questions about how the charity or foundation is investing its money before they agree to donate. No one wants their donation to go into a ponzi scheme or otherwise poorly managed funds.
The article also points out some information that should be easily found and available on charity web sites, including IRS filings, investment strategy and allocations, and others. Basically, provide as much information as you can in an easily accessed format in order to assuage nervous donors.