Minn. Nonprofits Gear Up for 'Give to the Max' Day

Updated: 11/14/2013 8:32 AM KSTP.com By: Becky Nahm

Minnesotans will get the chance to once again show off their incredible generosity with the fifth annual Give to the Max Day Thursday.

It's one of the easiest ways to give to your favorite non-profit or public school.  You just click and donate.

But this year there is a change in the fine print that will divert some of your dollars.

GiveMN.org uses the Razoo crowd funding platform to securely collect your donations.

Since the last Give to the Max day, Razoo has upped its rates from 2.9 percent of every donation to 4.9 percent. That means if you gave $10 last year, $9.71 of that went to the charity and $0.29 cents went to Razoo. This year, the breakdown will be $9.51 to the charity and $0.49 to Razoo.

That might sound pricey, but it is still one of the lowest transaction rates around.

GiveMN Executive Director Dana Nelson said, "Price increase is never good news; it's not something you ever want to have to do, right?"

"When you look at other platforms that are similar to GiveMN... we're certainly on the very lower end," Nelson said. "They range all the way up to 15 or even 20 percent in administrative fees."

If the transaction fee is unacceptable to you, you can always give directly to a charity by mailing a check.

But remember, GiveMN.org offers additional information like search tools to help you find organizations working on causes you support and charities that have secured matching dollars for donations.

"There is no right way to give for individuals," Charities Review Council Executive Director Kris Kewitsch said. "What you need to do is find out what blend of your head and your heart -- what kind of homework do you want to do to feel comfortable making your decision."

The Charities Review Council offers tools for doing your homework. They list Minnesota nonprofits that meet accountability standards in finance, fundraising, governance and public disclosure.

New this year, you can donate to up to five organizations at one time and check out just once.