There are so many charities looking for donations in this economy, it may be difficult weeding out those that you feel deserve your money and those that don't. The Better Business Bureau is warning donors to do their homework before donating to kids charities, as the lion's share of a charitable donation in some cases goes not to help kids, but to pay the high cost of telephone and direct-mail marketing.

Investigator Bill Smith says if you are unfamiliar with an organization that is soliciting you, don't be afraid to ask questions.

Smith comments

He also warns you to be cautious of charities with names similar to well-known national organizations. Sometimes an organization will choose a name hoping donors will confuse it with a better-known charity. You can check out a charity with the BBB by calling (314) 645-3300.

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