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Frequently Asked Questions

As of February 26, 2020, we allocate 4% of all donations made through our platform to our operations, except for donations that meet one of the following criteria:

  • Donations made directly to our partner charities that are registered in Canada (i.e., Against Malaria Foundation and Iodine Global Network, as of February 2020). None (0%) of these donations will be allocated to our operations, unless the donor indicates that they wish to support our operations with a portion of their donation. (Note that this exception does not include donations to RC Forward Funds.)
 
  • Large donations made by donors who have provided significant support for our operations in the past. These exceptions will be determined on a case-by-case basis through correspondence with the donor. If you feel this applies to you, please reach out to our team at the time of donation for more information.
 
  • Donations made to charities that are not official partner charities (our partner charities are those listed on our website under “Top Charities”). In these cases, it is possible that a proportion of the donation larger than 4% will be allocated to our operations. The operations allocation will be determined on a case-by-case basis through correspondence with the individual donor.
 

We (Rethink Charity) are a small nonprofit, and this 4% operations allocation is used to offset the costs we pay to run RC Forward. We hope that this allocation will only be temporary. You can read more about our decision on this here.

What information we share with the charity depends on your donation method, and this FAQ entry is organized by method. 

It’s important to understand that if the charity does not receive your contact information, they will not be able to thank you when they receive your donation. For this reason, our preference is for you to opt-in to sharing your email address with the charity, but for Method 2 and Method 3, below, this is not the default.

Method 1: If you are donating online by credit card at https://rcforward.org

By default, your donation amount, name, email address, and physical address will be shared with the charity.*

If this doesn’t work for you, we recommend creating a Charitable Impact account to have more control over how your information is shared (see Method 3, below). Or, if you’re planning on donating more than $200 per month or more than $1,000 at once, check out Method 2, below.

*Note: We’re excited that your donation options will be changing in 2021. Stay tuned for important updates by signing up for the RC Forward newsletter

Method 2: If you are donating through alternative methods (e-transfer, direct debit, wire, cheque): 

Our default is to only share your donation amount and name with the charity. The charity will not be able to contact you to say thank you. If you’d like acknowledgement from the charity, please indicate to us that you prefer Consent Level C or Consent Level D.

Our four consent levels are described here:

Consent Level A: Full anonymity. The analytics we send the charity only includes your donation amount, not your name or any other identifying information. 

Consent Level B: This is our default. We share your donation amount and name. 

Consent Level C: This is our preference. We share your donation amount, name, and email address. 

Consent Level D: We share your donation amount, name, email address, and physical address.

Method 3: If you are donating through your Charitable Impact account: 

The donation forms on https://rcforward.org are supplied by Charitable Impact, a donor-advised fund we partner with to facilitate the regranting process. You can also create a Charitable Impact account to donate to any RC Forward featured charity. 

If you donate through your Charitable Impact account, you’ll have more flexibility with what information you share with us, the “Campaign Administrators.” You can donate anonymously, only share your name, or share your name and email address. 

Do you have more questions? Feel free to reach out to [email protected].

If you donate online via RC Forward, your donation will be routed through Charitable Impact on its way to the charity you’re supporting. Charitable Impact is a donor-advised fund and registered Canadian charity, and our partnership helps us move your donation to your chosen charity in a cost-effective manner. Charitable Impact does not deduct fees from your donation. 

Charitable Impact provides you with an official donation receipt via email, and your donation will appear as CHIMP FNDN * DONATION on your credit card or bank statement.

Our goal is to maximize your donation’s positive impact on the world. In line with this goal, RC Forward is the most cost-effective way for Canadians to support our partner charities located outside of Canada. By using the RC Forward platform to donate to these charities, you’ll receive an official donation receipt that you can use to claim valuable charitable tax credits. If you were to donate through these charities’ websites, these tax credits wouldn’t be available. Given that Canadian charitable tax credit rates are generally between 20% and 49% of the amount you donate, they far outweigh the 4% of your donation that we allocate to RC Forward’s operations.

For charities that are already registered in Canada (Against Malaria Foundation, Schistosomiasis Control Initiative, and Iodine Global Network), you’ll receive the same tax benefits and similar credit card fees by donating via the charity’s website. In this case, the main advantage of giving through RC Forward is the convenience of making all of your high-impact donations in one place. However, if you’re only donating to one of these charities, or would prefer for your donation to be delivered to the partner charity instantly, giving through the partner charity’s website may be the best option for you.

Feel free to get in touch if you have additional questions about whether giving through RC Forward is right for you!

We use operations allocations to pay for

  • Salaries for our team of four
  • Third-party cross-border and fund transfer fee coverage;
  • Technology, accounting, and legal costs, as well as conference attendance for our staff

Depending on when you donate, it may take up to several months for your donation to be received by the charity. But it’s not always that long, and we’re building a tracking page to help you understand your donation’s progress towards its destination.

Our team moves your donation from Canada to its destination with a registered 501(c)(3) organization in the United States. There’s actually several steps in this journey, and its complexity is one reason it takes some time for your donation to reach the charity.

One step in the process is converting your donation’s currency from Canadian to American dollars. Batching donations together to exchange more at one time is one way we maximize cost effectiveness, thereby increasing your impact.

A strong desire to immediately get your donation to your chosen charity is one reason to donate directly through the charity’s website instead of using RC Forward, but unfortunately in most cases you’ll then forfeit valuable Canadian tax credits

If you are making a one-time donation over $1,000, or a monthly donation over $200, we recommend you connect with our team to maximize your impact by optimizing credit card fees. Please get in touch by emailing Siobhan at [email protected].

Yes, you can use RC Forward to donate from any country. However, you will only be able to use your official donation receipt if you have a valid Canadian physical address.

Yes! You will see various privacy options as you move through the donation process. By providing information to the group organizers, you are giving Rethink Charity permission to pass that information on to the charity/charities represented by the group you donated to.

Yes! While making your donation you’ll find a dropdown menu option entitled Repeat this gift? where you can choose to make this a one-off donation, a monthly donation on the 1st of each month, or a monthly donation on the 15th of each month. Unfortunately, there are currently no options available to donate in a frequency other than monthly.

All of our partner charities meet at least one of the following five criteria:

  • The charity currently is or recently was recommended by a well-respected, unbiased, evidence-based charity evaluator, for example GiveWell or Animal Charity Evaluators.

  • The charity has been identified by a third-party expert in the charitable sector as implementing extremely cost-effective interventions in its particular cause area.

  • The charity is itself a well-respected, evidence-based charity evaluator or incubator.

  • The charity serves to educate and build a community around concepts like high-impact and cost-effective charity.

  • The charity’s intervention is as of yet unproven, though evidence reviewed by the experts mentioned above suggests the intervention is especially promising.

Our list of selected charities is not exhaustive by any means, and we hope to continue to add charities as time goes on. Rethink Charity reserves the right to add and subtract charities from the list with or without public explanation. We also reserve the right to deny any charity a spot on our list even if they meet one or more of the above criteria. With that said, we strive to be as inclusive as possible within the bounds of high-impact charity.

Yes! You can donate to any of the EA Funds through RC Forward. There are four EA Funds: Global Health and Development Fund; Animal Welfare Fund; Long-Term Future Fund; and Effective Altruism Infrastructure Fund.

EA Funds is a project of the Centre for Effective Altruism (CEA). Please follow the following instructions so that we can correctly allocate your donation: 

Online, credit card donations: First, complete your donation on our Centre for Effective Altruism (CEA) donation page. Then, please complete this form to allocate your donation to one or more EA Funds.

Donations made by our alternative methods: For donations of more than $1,000 at once or more than $200 monthly, we offer alternative methods to reduce credit card fees. Reach out to [email protected] for more information. You’ll be given instructions to earmark your donation—follow these instructions to specify the EA Fund or Funds you’d like to donate to. 

No problem! Contact Us and we’ll do our best to answer your questions.