Identifying the best charities is not easy.
Imagine you've set aside $100 to donate towards your favorite cause. You want it to end up with the best organization—the one that will put it to its greatest possible use—but are overwhelmed by the vast number of charities to choose from. You realize you'd have to spend hours reviewing mission statements, financial reports, and other resources to feel confident you'd found the right one, and you don't have that kind of time.
Power of Deduction is for you.
Our company's central purpose is to make high impact charitable contributions for eight of our favorite causes:
We work hard to identify the most efficient, effective, and ethical charities serving each one, and put our knowledge into action by contributing to one per cause every month. How does this help you? Well, if your favorite cause is among those we serve, you can piggyback on our research and donate your money to us, not a charity, with a request that it be used to support our next contribution for your cause. Thanks to our tax situation, your $100 gift would enable us to add not just $100, but $130, to our next contribution for the cause you select.
So what are you waiting for? Donate now to maximize your impact!
Thinking about giving to Power of Deduction but want to know more about the causes we serve and values we prioritize for each one? Check out the descriptions below for category-specific answers.
Our contributions for our immigrants and refugees cause typically go to the organizations that provide urgently needed aid to those fleeing violence or oppression, as well as those that fight for the legal rights of these displaced people once they're re-settled. Our recent contributions have been directed to organizations serving Syrian and Rohingya refugees.
We're interested in the research of "effective altruists," who seem to agree that contributions to organizations that fight the spread of malaria or work to de-worm the world's most vulnerable populations can have an unparalleled impact. While we don't sign on to the entire effective altruism platform, this research does inform our global health giving.
We support environmental organizations that are researching or implementing effective climate change interventions, or otherwise helping to preserve the environment for future generations using concrete, proven methods.
Our favorite animal welfare organizations are those that protect the lives of large numbers of domesticated animals (both pets and livestock), as well as the ones that preserve biodiversity by protecting endangered species from threats like poaching.
For homelessness, we favor organizations that provide effective mental health services to homeless adults and food, clothing, and shelter to homeless children. As with all of our causes, we reject the notion that "Charity begins at home" and prioritize giving to the organizations that provide the best care, not those that may be the biggest players within our own communities.
Food fortification programs can have a tremendous effect with respect to the health and well-being of those in the developing world. We therefore focus our giving for this cause on charities providing these services.
We've been impressed by studies showing that engagement with the arts can have significant therapeutic effects on at-risk and incarcerated individuals. Charities providing services in this area therefore receive the bulk of our contributions for this cause.
Education is a popular but highly challenging cause due to a surprising number of organizations whose missions simply are not supported by sufficient evidence. Rather than advancing any particular educational style, therefore, we prefer to give to organizations that simply seek to boost school attendance. We like organizations that build schools in places where there aren't any or keep kids healthy enough to attend, provided that they do so in an ethical way.
Why should I donate to Power of Deduction?
Making a gift to Power of Deduction is quite simply the best way to maximize the impact of your charitable giving budget. There are thousands of organizations working within the causes we serve, and we know how challenging and time-consuming it can be to identify the best ones. Isn't it better to make a gift to us, with the knowledge that we've done extensive research to identify top organizations serving your preferred cause and intend to use your gift to boost our contribution to one of them? We sure think so, especially when our methods enable us to make our contributions in amounts that are more than 130% of what we take in.
Is Power of Deduction a charity?
No. Power of Deduction is a social enterprise that provides services akin to some charities, but is not organized as a charity itself. This means that your donations to Power of Deduction are not tax deductible the way a charitable contribution would be. If you don't itemize your tax deductions, that shouldn't really matter, but if you do, make sure you check out the next question, which applies specifically to you.
Does it make sense for me to donate to Power of Deduction even if I itemize my tax deductions?
Yes. We understand that some people who itemize their deductions may be inclined to give less to Power of Deduction than they would to a charity since their donations to us aren't tax deductible. In light of the work we do to identify the organizations that best use contributed money and our ability to add 130% of our incoming donations to our outgoing contributions, however, we believe that even with these reductions, those people's money can still make a bigger difference in the world if they donate to us than if they contribute to an average charity.
Why can't I designate a specific charity?
It's important that we retain complete control regarding how we use your donations, including the selection of which charities we contribute to, to ensure we remain entitled to the tax deductions that enable us to give as generously as we do. If you're set on a specific charity you want to benefit, therefore, you should use your charitable giving budget to contribute to it, not Power of Deduction.
Which charity will Power of Deduction use my gift to support?
We don't divulge the identities of the identities of the organizations we intend to contribute to for a given month ahead of time. However, we do provide our donors with information regarding the organization to which we contributed for their designated cause in the month after they donate in the form of blog posts as well as personalized emails.
Will Power of Deduction tell me which charity it uses the money I donate to support? If so, when?
Absolutely. While we don't divulge which charities we intend to contribute to in advance, after we've made our contributions in the month after you donate, we'll update our blog and send you an email with some information about the organization we chose for your cause. We make our contributions on the 10th of each month, and we try to email our donors that same day. This means that if you donate any time in the month of August, we'll be back in touch on September 10 to let you know which organization we contributed to for your preferred cause.
What happens if I don't like the charity Power of Deduction uses the money I donate to support?
We welcome feedback on issues like this via our contact us page. We don't offer refunds, but we're always happy to discuss your questions or concerns in this area.
Does Power of Deduction offer any guarantees to donors?
It's important to understand that when you donate to Power of Deduction, you are making an outright, irrevocable gift to us. While we absolutely intend to use your donation to boost our next monthly contribution to a charitable organization serving your preferred cause, we stop short of guaranteeing that we'll do so. This is because such a guarantee would jeopardize our entitlement to the tax deductions that are central to how we set our own giving budget. We ask our users to consider this fact before they give.
How does Power of Deduction decide which charities to contribute to?
We do extensive research to identify organizations that use contributions efficiently, effectively, and ethically. We try to identify organizations that provide proven, needed services, and where the next dollar contributed can have a significant impact. This involves review of literature and financial disclosures created by charities themselves as well as third party services like GiveWell, Charity Navigator, and GuideStar, not to mention a thorough understanding of the nature of the causes we serve.
How long does it take for Power of Deduction to make a charitable contribution after I make my gift?
We usually make our contributions on or around the 10th of each month, and link gifts from each month to the contribution we make in the immediately following one. So if you donate to Power of Deduction any time in the month of June, for example, your donation will enable us to increase the contribution we make on July 10.
Why doesn't Power of Deduction use the money I donate to make a separate contribution immediately after I give?
One of our over-arching goals as a company is to help the best charities receive (and keep) the greatest possible amount in contributions. For practical reasons, we make most of our contributions online, and charities usually have to pay per-transaction fees of around 2.2% + 30 cents on all online contributions. This means that if we make 100 contributions to the same organization, it has to pay the 30 cent component of the fee 100 times. If we just make one contribution to it associated with 100 separate donations, however, it only has to pay the 30 cent fee once. The difference may seem small, but it adds up quickly. We therefore find the once per month schedule to strike the right balance between helping charities receive a steady flow of money to fund their operations on the one hand and avoiding excessive transaction fees on the other.
How does Power of Deduction make money?
In addition to our baseline contributions, we set out to contribute 30% more to charity than we take in via donations, which is of course a losing proposition on its face. But because our incoming donations constitute tax-free gifts, and because our tax situation allows us to deduct our outgoing charitable contributions from our owners' outside income, we get tax refunds that offset our costs, more or less.
Are my gifts to Power of Deduction or Power of Deduction's charitable contributions tax deductible by me?
Since Power of Deduction is not a charity, and since the money it contributes to charities comes from it and not you, no, neither of those payments is deductible by you.