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Smart Giver THE


Givi Guid ng e In sid e

The newslet ter from the Charities Review Council w w w. Smar

Evolving to Better Serve You Now bringing you a refined, go-to list of the Most Trustworthy Nonprofits


Fall 2011 - Spring 2012 • Evolving to Better Serve You • Matching Gift Challenge • Giving Profile of Mark Welter

As the holiday season approaches, charitable giving increases making this the perfect time to use our Giving Guide to make smart donations. For the first time, this Giving Guide only recognizes the Most Trustworthy Nonprofits—simplifying your search. This summer the Charities Review Council revised its method for listing charities and nonprofits so donors can better give with confidence. We now recognize only nonprofits that meet all of our Accountability Standards and earn our Meets Standards Seal—no longer publishing nonprofits that do not earn the Meets Standards Seal.

“In a time when individuals have more charitable choices, providing a premier, go-to list, recognizing the most trustworthy charities with in-depth supporting information, gives donors an important tool for giving with confidence,” Rich Cowles, executive director of the Charities Review Council. This change will encourage nonprofits more than ever to undergo our voluntary review process and take this step to strengthen their accountability and transparency.

Donors and the general public will benefit from a net increase in information as more charities participate in the Council’s review and meet Standards, raising the bar for nonprofit accountability throughout the sector. “We see this as an opportunity to evolve to better serve our nonprofit and donor constituents,” said Cowles. “This change removes a tough barrier to widespread nonprofit participation as well as removes the unfairness of negatively listing organizations that demonstrate their commitment to transparency by voluntarily participating, while organizations that choose not to go through a review are not negatively listed.” As always, it is the Council’s mission to provide donors with a helpful resource to aid their informed giving choices and to ensure that nonprofits are meeting accountability expectations as outlined in the Council’s Accountability Standards: mobilizing both informed givers and accountable nonprofits for the greater good.

Three Easy Ways to Check Out Charity Reviews Before Giving

Giving Guide 2011

Check out the Giving Guide on page 3 of this newsletter for a list of reviewed charities.

Call (651) 224-7030 or (800) 733-GIVE



The Smart Giver Charities Review Council

your support makes this giving guide possible

Double your donation to the Council during our Matching Gift Challenge.

Building the Most Trustworthy Nonprofits

All donations will be matched dollar for dollar up to $10,000 now through December 31st!

Providing you with the information you need to make confident giving decisions is one of our top priorities. By only including organizations that meet Standards in our Giving Guide, you are able to quickly and confidently scan the list for the Most Trustworthy Nonprofits. This Giving Guide would not be possible without the support of generous donors like you. We invite you to send a gift today to play a critical role in the continuation of our services. Right now you have the opportunity to help the Charities Review Council earn a $10,000 matching grant. Through the end of the year, all donations to the Council will be matched up to $10,000. Take advantage of this opportunity today and make a contribution to the Council in the enclosed envelope. You can also make a contribution online by visiting or over the phone by calling 651-224-7030 or 800-733-GIVE. This is your chance to make widespread impact with just one gift. By supporting the work of the Council, you are also supporting the critical missions of the more than 400 nonprofits we serve. When an organization voluntarily starts our review process, we provide the resources, education, and one-on-one guidance to aid the organization in earning the Meets Standards Seal and becoming a better, healthier organization in the process.

Helping you make smart charitable decisions

One of our strongest supporters, Mark Welter, uses the Council’s website and newsletter regularly to guide him in his giving decisions. He feels confident that his hard-earned dollars will be used effectively when supporting those organizations in this guide. Read his full Giving Profile on page 8.

We truly appreciate your support. Together we are strengthening our charitable sector. Best Regards,

Rich Cowles Executive Director

The Smart Giver Charities Review Council

Most Trustworthy Nonprofits Only recognizing nonprofits that earn the Meets Standards Seal.

How to use this Guide How does a nonprofit get listed as “Most Trustworthy”?

This go-to list features nonprofits that have voluntarily participated in our review and met all of our Accountability Standards thus earning our Meets Standards Seal. The review is valid for three years and requires a small administrative payment.

g n i v i G de Gui 1

Are you looking for a nonprofit that isn’t listed?

This list reflects the latest review results as of October 1, 2011. If a nonprofit is not listed, it is either unreviewed or has not completed its review. If a nonprofit has not been reviewed, encourage the organization to sign up for a review.

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How can I get information about unreviewed nonprofits?

You can find limited information about unreviewed nonprofits on or call us at (651) 224-7030 to ask about unreviewed nonprofits.

Accountability Standards

Our Accountability Standards consist of 27 standards, which address a nonprofit’s performance in four critical areas: public disclosure, governance, financial activity, and fundraising. The standards have evolved over the Council’s 65 years, with broad participation from Minnesota’s nonprofit and philanthropic communities, to reflect reasonable public expectations of nonprofits. Find out more about the Standards at

The Charities Review Council does not endorse or disapprove of any organization.

The Charities Review Council determined that the organization meets all Standards.

Giving Guide October 1, 2011

Real-time up-to-date nonprofit listings available online at

A  Breath of Hope Lung Foundation (New Organization)

American Red Cross – South Central MN Chapter

Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities

AccessAbility, Inc.

American Red Cross – Southeast Minnesota Chapter

Books For Africa, Inc.

AccountAbility Minnesota

American Red Cross – Northern Minnesota Region

Brain Injury Association of Minnesota

ACES (Athletes Committed to Educating Students)

American Refugee Committee

Breanna’s Gift

Amherst H. Wilder Foundation

Bridges of Hope

Admission Possible

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Association, Minnesota Chapter

Bridging, Inc.

Advocates for Human Rights, The

Ananya Dance Theatre

Boy Scouts of America, Northern Star Council


Angel Foundation

Cabrini Partnership

African American AIDS Task Force

Animal Humane Society

Camp Odayin

 frican Community School (New A Organization)

Anna Marie’s Alliance

Can Do Canines

African Families Development Network (New Organization)

Annex Teen Clinic

Cancer Legal Line (New Organization)



Aliveness Project, The

Arc Greater Twin Cities


Alliance Housing Incorporated

Arthritis Foundation North Central Chapter

Carmen Pampa Fund

Alzheimer’s Association

Ascension Place, Inc.

Casa de Esperanza

Alzheimer’s Association, Minnesota-North Dakota Chapter

Asian Media Access

Catholic Charities of St. Paul and Minneapolis

Accessible Space, Inc.


American Cancer Society American Composers Forum American Diabetes Association American Lung Association of the Upper Midwest

Association for Nonsmokers - Minnesota

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities

Avenues for Homeless Youth

Catholic Charities of the Diocese of St. Cloud

Banyan Community, The

Center for Victims of Torture

 asic Needs Inc. of South Washington B County d/b/a Stone Soup Thrift Shop

Central Minnesota Community Foundation


Channel One, Inc.



The Smart Giver Charities Review Council

Giving Guide – continued

Can’t find a charity?

See page 3 for information or call us at (651) 224-7030.

October 1, 2011

Charities Review Council (Informational Self-Review) Child Care Choices, Inc. ChildFund International Children’s Dental Services Children’s Health Care Foundation Children’s HeartLink Children’s Home Society & Family Services

East Metro Women’s Council East Side Neighborhood Services, Inc. East Suburban Resources, Inc. ECHO Minnesota (New Organization) Eco Education Emerge Community Development Emergency Foodshelf Network Envision Minnesota

Hazelden Foundation Headwaters Foundation for Justice Headway Emotional Health Services HealthEast Foundation Heart of the Beast Theatre, Inc. Helping Hands Outreach to Elders, Inc. Helping Paws, Inc.

Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota

Hemophilia Foundation of Minnesota/ Dakotas

Episcopal Community Services

HFH of Douglas County, Minnesota, Inc.

eQuality - Pathways to Potential

Hmong American Partnership

Common Hope

Evergreen Youth & Family Services / Evergreen House, Inc.

Home for Life / The Animal Sanctuary of St. Croix Valley, Inc.

CommonBond Communities

Eye-Link Foundation (New Organization)

Honors Choirs of Southeast Minnesota

Communities Investing in Families

Face to Face Health and Counseling Service

Hope Community, Inc.

Community Action Duluth, Inc.

Faith’s Lodge (New Organization)

House of Charity, Inc.

Community Action Partnership of Ramsey & Washington Counties

Family Hope Services, Inc. / TreeHouse

HousingLink, The

Family Partnership, The

HSI / Human Services, Inc.

Community Action Partnership of Suburban Hennepin

Family Pathways

Hunger Solutions Minnesota

Family Tree Clinic

Intercongregation Communities Association

Children’s Theatre Company Choral Arts Ensemble of Rochester City of Lakes Community Land Trust Clare Housing

Community Emergency Assistance Program, Inc. Community Health Charities Minnesota Community Involvement Programs Community Mediation Services, Inc. Community Shares of Minnesota Community Thread Como Friends COMPAS Compatible Technology International Comunidades Latinas Unidas En Servicio Confidence Learning Center Conflict Resolution Center Cookie Cart CornerHouse

FamilyMeans Feed My Starving Children

Interfaith Hospitality Network of Greater Rochester

Fergus Falls Senior Citizens Program, Inc.

Interfaith Outreach & Community Partners

Food for Hungry Minds

International Breast Milk Project


Jeremiah Program

Free Arts Minnesota

Jewish Community Center of the Greater St. Paul Area

Free to Be, Inc. Freeport West

Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Minneapolis

Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness

Joseph’s Coat, Inc.

Friends of the Hennepin County Library

Jungle Theater, The

Friends of the Mississippi River

Junior Achievement of the Upper Midwest, Inc.

Friendship Ventures Genesis II for Families, Inc.

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Karen Organization of Minnesota

Cornerstone Advocacy Service

 irl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin G River Valleys

Keystone Community Services

Courage Center

Goodwill / Easter Seals Minnesota

Kinnickinnic River Land Trust, Inc.

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation

Great Neighborhoods! Development Corporation

Kinship of Greater Minneapolis

Crisis Connection CROSS Dakota Communities Dakota Woodlands DARTS Diversity Council Dodge Nature Center Domestic Abuse Project

Greater Mankato Area United Way

La Oportunidad

Greater Metropolitan Housing Corporation

Lakes & Prairies Community Action Partnership, Inc.

Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches

Lakes Area Youth Service Bureau, Inc.

Greater Minneapolis Crisis Nursery

Latino Economic Development Center

Greater Twin Cities United Way

Laura Baker Services Association

Guild Incorporated

Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers

Haiti Outreach, Inc.

Learning Disabilities Association (LDA Minnesota)

Hastings Family Service

The Smart Giver Charities Review Council

Giving Guide – continued

Can’t find a charity?

See page 3 for information or call us at (651) 224-7030.

October 1, 2011

Lee Carlson Center for Mental Health and Well Being Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Inc., The LifeSource / Upper Midwest Organ Procurement Organization, Inc. Lifetrack Resources, Inc. Life-Work Planning Center Board, Inc. Lifeworks Services, Inc. Link, The Listening House of St. Paul

Minnesota Fighting AIDS on Bikes

Northwest Youth & Family Services

Minnesota Home Ownership Center

One Heartland

 innesota Indian Women’s Resource M Center

Open Arms of Minnesota

Minnesota International Center Minnesota Land Trust Minnesota Life College Minnesota Literacy Council, Inc. Minnesota Medical Foundation

Little Brothers-Friends of the Elderly

Minnesota Network of Hospice & Palliative Care

Loaves and Fishes Too

Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Lupus Foundation of Minnesota Lutheran Partners in Global Ministry Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota Make-A-Wish Foundation of Minnesota

Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance, Inc. Minnesota Public Radio Minnesota Sinfonia

Ordway Center for the Performing Arts PACER Center, Inc. Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, Inc. Parks & Trails Council of MN People Incorporated People Responding in Social Ministry People Serving People, Inc. Perspectives, Inc. Phyllis Wheatley Community Center Pillager Family Council Pillsbury United Communities Plan USA / Plan International USA, Inc.

Mankato Rehabilitation Center, Inc.

 innesota State Academy for the Blind M Foundation

Mano a Mano International Partners

Minnesota Stroke Association

MAP for Nonprofits

Minnesota Teen Challenge

Marshall Area Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA)

Minnesota Veterans Medical Research & Education Foundation

McLeod Emergency Food Shelf

Minnesota Visiting Nurse Agency

Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota

Mediation Services for Anoka County

Minnesota Youth Intervention Programs Association

ProAct, Inc.

Memorial Blood Centers Mental Health Association of Minnesota

Minnetonka Center for the Arts

Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota Playwrights’ Center, The Plymouth Christian Youth Center Portico Healthnet

Productive Alternatives, Inc.

Miracles of Mitch Foundation

Project FINE (Focus on Integrating Newcomers through Education)

Mississippi River Fund (New Organization)

Project for Pride in Living Inc. (PPL)

Mixed Blood Theatre

Project Pathfinder, Inc.

Model Cities of St. Paul, Inc.

Reading Center, The

Morton Cure Paralysis Fund

Rebuilding Together Twin Cities

Mid-Minnesota Legal Assistance

MPD Foundation

Red River Valley Dental Access Project

Midwest Special Services, Inc.

NAMI Minnesota

Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation

National Blood Clot Alliance

Regional Parks Foundation of the Twin Cities (New Organization)

Minneapolis Jewish Federation

National Kidney Foundation, Inc.

Minnesota Adoption Resource Network

 ational Multiple Sclerosis Society, N Minnesota Chapter

Merrick Community Services Merrick, Inc. Metro Meals on Wheels, Inc. Metropolitan Economic Development Association

 innesota Affiliate of Susan G. Komen M Breast Cancer Foundation, The

Neighborhood Development Center

Minnesota AIDS Project

Neighborhood HealthSource

Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans

Neighborhood House

Minnesota Children’s Museum

Neighbors, Inc.

Minnesota Council for Quality, Inc.

New Pathways, Inc.

Minnesota Council on Economic Education

Northeast Dinner Bell, Inc., Meals on Wheels Program

Minnesota Dance Theatre & The Dance Institute

Northern Clay Center

Minnesota Diversified Industries

Northern Dental Access Center

Minnesota Environmental Partnership

 orthwest Hennepin Human Services N Council

Minnesota Fathers & Families Network

RELATE Counseling Center RESOURCE, Inc. ResourceWest Restorative Justice Community Action, Inc. (RJCA) Rochester Area Family Y Rochester Area Habitat for Humanity Rochester Neighborhood Resource Center Ronald McDonald House of Rochester, MN, Inc RS EDEN Rum River Health Services, Inc. Sabathani Community Center Sabes Jewish Community Center Saint Paul Area Council of Churches



The Smart Giver Charities Review Council

Giving Guide – continued

Can’t find a charity?

See page 3 for information or call us at (651) 224-7030.

October 1, 2011

SAVE (Suicide Awareness Voices of Education) Scholarship America, Inc. Search Institute Second Harvest Heartland Second Harvest North Central Food Bank Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank Semcac Senior Community Services

Twin Cities RISE!


Twin Cities Salvation Army, The

YWCA of Mankato

 nion Gospel Mission Association of St. U Paul

YWCA of Minneapolis

Union Gospel Mission, Inc. United Cerebral Palsy of Central Minnesota United Cerebral Palsy of Minnesota United Way of Douglas & Pope Counties United Way of Greater Duluth, Inc.

Sexual Assault Program of Beltrami, Cass & Hubbard Counties

United Way of Olmsted County, Inc.

Sherburne County Area United Way

United Way of West Central Minnesota

Sight & Hearing Association

University of Minnesota Foundation

Simpson Housing Services, Inc.

Vail Place

Slavic Community Center


Sojourner Project, Inc.

Village Family Service Center, The

Somali Multi Service (New Organization)

Vision Loss Resources

Southern Valley Alliance for Battered Women


Southside Family Nurturing Center Spare Key Springboard for the Arts St. Croix Valley Community Foundation  t. David’s Center for Child & Family S Development

United Way of Washington County - East

Volunteer Lawyers Network, Ltd. Volunteer Resource Center Volunteers of America of Minnesota Voyageurs National Park Association WACOSA Waseca Area Neighborhood Service Center

YWCA St. Paul Zumbro Valley Mental Health Center

Reviews in Progress Nonprofits listed as “Review in Progress” are currently being evaluated. Academy on Violence and Abuse Access Justice (New Organization) Agape Riding Center (New Organization) Alexandra House, Inc. ALSAC/ St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Arc Minnesota, The Bakken Museum, The Be The Match Foundation Bolder Options Bridge for Hudson Youth, Inc. Bridge for Youth, The Bridges to Learning Business, Arts and Recreation Center Child Care Resource & Referral, Inc. Child Foundation

St. Louis Park Emergency Program

Washburn Center for Children

St. Paul Neighborhood Network


St. Stephen’s Human Services

Way to Grow, Inc.

SteppingStone Theatre

Wayside House, Inc., The

Store To Door

We Can Ride, Inc.

Students Today Leaders Forever

WellShare International

Tanzania Life Project

West Suburban Teen Clinic

Teens Alone, Inc.

Wilderness Inquiry

Teenwise Minnesota

Will Steger Foundation

Disabled American Veterans Minneapolis Chapter #1

Ten Thousand Things Theater

Children’s Cancer Research Fund Children’s Safety Centers Christian Appalachian Project Circus Juventas City of Lakes Waldorf School Commonweal Theatre Company Construction Career Training Program

Wishes & More

Donations for Education

Textile Center of Minnesota

Women’s Advocates, Inc.

Fairview Foundation

The Loft Literary Center (The Loft, Inc.)

Women’s Foundation of Minnesota

Falls Hunger Coalition, Inc.

Tix for Tots (New Organization)


Franconia Sculpture Park

Touchstone Mental Health

YMCA Camp Olson

Fresh Energy

Tree Trust

YMCA of Greater Saint Paul

Friends of the Ramsey County Libraries

Tri-County Humane Society

YMCA of Metropolitan Minneapolis

Hallie Q. Brown Community Center


Youth Express

Heartland Community Action, Inc.

Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus

Youth Frontiers


Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity

Youth Performance Company

HOPE Center

Twin Cities Public Television

Youth Service Bureau, Inc.

Hope House of St. Croix Valley

The Smart Giver Charities Review Council

Giving Guide – continued October 1, 2011 (Reviews in Progress– continued) Human Relief, Inc.

Southwest Minnesota Private Industry Council, Inc.

Initiative Foundation

St. Anthony Park Block Nurse Program

Jabbok Family Services

St. Mary’s Health Clinics

Jewish Historical Society of the Upper Midwest

Surgical Eye Expeditions International, Inc.

JSAW Xtreme Karen Wyckoff Rein in Sarcoma Foundation Kids Against Hunger, Inc.

Tasks Unlimited, Inc. The Works United Way of the Brown County Area, Inc. Urban Homeworks

Lao Family Community of MN, Inc. League of Women Voters Minneapolis Legal Assistance of Washington County, Inc. LegalCORPS

Wellstone Action Fund West Hennepin Affordable Housing Land Trust Windustry Women’s General Auxiliary to Shriners Hospitals for Children — Twin Cities

Let’s Go Fishing With Seniors Lourdes Foundation, Inc. March of Dimes Foundation Metropolitan Regional Arts Council Mentoring Partnership of Minnesota Minneapolis Community and Technical College Foundation Minnesota Indian Women’s Sexual Assault Coalition Muscular Dystrophy Association NAMI Southeast MN Native Americans in Philanthropy Neighborhood Involvement Program Olmsted County Historical Society Open Cities Health Open Your Heart to the Hungry and Homeless Overcomers Outreach Ministries, Inc. People Reaching Out To Other People, Inc. Pet Haven Incorporated of Minnesota Pro Choice Resources Pueblo a Pueblo Ready 4 K Rochester Symphony Orchestra and Chorale Ronald McDonald House Charities, Upper Midwest Scott Carver Dakota CAP Agency, Inc.

© Charities Review Council 2610 University Ave. W., Suite 375 St. Paul, MN 55114-2007 Phone: (651) 224-7030 or 800-733-GIVE (4483) Email: The Smart Giver is published twice a year. It is available free of charge and distributed to households, businesses, and nonprofits. If you are not on our mailing list and would like to receive this helpful guide – or if a family member, friend or co-worker might like to receive it – please contact the Council. Editor: Jamie Millard,


Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage


Permit #1743 St. Paul, MN

2610 University Ave. W., Suite 375 St. Paul, MN 55114-2007 Phone: 651-224-7030 or 800-733-GIVE United Way Funded Agency

2011 Board of Directors Sarah Bjelland Wells Fargo Cynthia Campos Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Local 26 Heidi Neff Christianson, Chair Moore, Costello & Hart, PLLP Mike Ducar Retired, Ameriprise

Zainab Hassan The Minneapolis Foundation

Meet a smart giver

Tony Helmer Crowley, White & Helmer, Inc.

Mark Welter shares his philosophy and passion for philanthropy

Diane (Hansen) Hovis, Treasurer Retired, Travelers

“We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.” - Sir Winston Churchill

Morris Goodwin, Jr., Secretary Amherst H. Wilder Foundation

Daniel Johnson National MS Society, Upper Midwest Steve Joul, Past-Chair Central Minnesota Community Foundation Cindy Kleven 3M Community Affairs Lavon Lee Grotto Foundation Khanh Nguyen, Ph.D. Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Anita Patel YWCA of Minneapolis Daniel A. Rodriguez, Vice Chair Merrick Community Services Michael Wirth Davis Goodwill/Easter Seals Minnesota Ronald J. Zweber Bremer Bank

Staff Rich Cowles

Executive Director

Jamie Millard

Communications Coordinator

Jenna Salinas

Nonprofit Services Coordinator

Keely Schallock

Development Assistant

Amy B. Sinykin

Associate Director

Martin Wera

Program Director

These words reflect the philosophy of one of the Council’s strongest supporters, Dr. Mark Welter. Doc Welter, as he prefers to be called, sat down with us to share a bit of his story. He told us right away that the number one motivator of his generosity has been his mother. “Dad died of a heart attack when I was two, and Mother was still carrying my brother. We lived in nearpoverty. In spite of living in town, I was 16 before I experienced the comfort of indoor plumbing. We braved the harsh Minnesota winters with primitive wood and coal heat. How Mother silently met these challenges remains a mystery to this day. “Free public education was a turning point in my life. A degree at St. John’s University added to this recognition.

“Two years of military service further enhanced my appreciation of what this country had offered me. The masses of poor, hungry, people, who viewed my uniform as a sign of wealth and who had no opportunity to improve themselves, made America look like a Utopia. It is. And I am indebted. “Offered affordable tuition, I eventually found a fulfilling job (teaching) and gained added confirmation of what I owed others. Nothing I have today was possible without dedicated teachers, parents, hardworking and tax-paying citizens, and the over one million men and women who gave their lives and limbs to preserve the opportunities all citizens of America are offered.” Now a teacher of world religions, Doc Welter went on to tell us that he is most passionate about exploring the commonalities of the human species—the values we share across cultures of taking care of each other, serving, helping, and loving our neighbors. He has been interested in the Charities Review Council because we help people carry out this love and human togetherness in a tangible way. He explained that he does not accept unsolicited requests and has appreciated the Council’s guidance in helping him find worthy organizations to support.

Charities Review Council's Fall 2011 Smart Giver Newsletter  

The Smart Giver Newsletter is published twice a year and includes the Giving Guide, our list of strong, accountable and trustworthy nonprofi...

Charities Review Council's Fall 2011 Smart Giver Newsletter  

The Smart Giver Newsletter is published twice a year and includes the Giving Guide, our list of strong, accountable and trustworthy nonprofi...