“You should ask for their phone number, website and address,” Sword said.
The BBB said the best way to protect yourself is to donate to organizations you know have handled natural disasters in the past.
The most important thing to remember is that you have time to thoroughly research the charity before you make a donation. If they pressure you to give in a short time frame, they likely are not legitimate.
“A real charity will take your donation just as much tomorrow as they will today,” Sword said. “The problem that this hurricane has caused is not going to be over in one day.”
The American Red Cross Dayton Chapter plans to send up to 24 people to Haiti as part of the relief effort.
“We have pre-positioned a lot of aid in the ways of blankets, sanitary water and clean up kits,” said Laura Seyfang, Dayton Area Red Cross Executive Director.