How to donate to GiveWell charities tax-efficiently
One of the most important messages of effective altruism is that you can do a phenomenal amount of good through well-chosen donations. Some charities are hundreds or even thousands of times more cost-effective than others, and there is solid evidence that even relatively modest donations to them will do a great deal of good. For example, deworming charities like Deworm the World and the Schistosomiasis Control Initiative (SCI) can treat people for parasitic diseases for about 50 US cents per person!
Charity evaluator GiveWell has conducted detailed research to find the best places to give. Below you can find details of the charities they recommend, and whether gifts to them are tax-deductible in your country. To find out how to donate where you live, use the following dropdown and then click the donate buttons below:
Select your country:
In the US, you can donate tax-deductibly to all the charities on this page.
In Canada, you can donate tax-deductibly to all the charities on this page.
In the UK, you can donate tax-deductibly to all the charities on this page.
In Switzerland, you can donate tax-deductibly to all the charities on this page.
In Germany, you can donate tax-deductibly to all the charities on this page.
You can donate tax-deductibly to SCI and AMF via your local Transnational Giving Europe partner, which will typically charge a 5% fee. AMF is also directly tax-deductible in some of these countries. You may also be able to claim tax-deductibility for SCI (and AMF) via this method; however, see here. You may also wish to explore donation trading.
In Australia, you can donate tax-deductibly to the Against Malaria Foundation. You can also donate tax-deductibly to SCI, Deworm the world and Give Directly through the Effective Altruism Australia website.
Elsewhere, the Against Malaria Foundation is the charity to which you are most likely to be able to donate tax-efficiently. You may also wish to explore donation trading.
GiveWell's top recommendations
Treat hundreds of people for parasitic worms
Deworm the World and the Schistosomiasis Control Initiative (SCI) treat parasitic worm infections such as schistosomiasis, which can cause urinary infections, anemia, and other nutritional problems. For more information, read GiveWell's detailed review, or the more accessible Charity Science summary. Deworm the World is registered in the USA and SCI in the UK, allowing for tax-efficient direct donations in those countries, and taxpayers from other countries can also often give to them efficiently.
Deworm the World
Schistosomiasis Control Initiative (SCI)
Make unconditional cash transfers with GiveDirectly
GiveDirectly lets you empower people to purchase whatever they believe will help them most. Eleven randomized controlled trials have supported cash transfers’ impact, and there is strong evidence that recipients know their own situation best and generally invest in things which make them happier in the long term. For more information, read GiveWell's detailed review, or the more accessible Charity Science summary.
Save lives and prevent infections with the Against Malaria Foundation
Malaria is a terrible disease and one of the world's biggest killers of children under 5. Thankfully, a $6 bednet can stop a malaria-carrying mosquito from infecting children while they sleep. There are many randomized controlled trials suggesting that this is one the most cost-effective ways to save a life. Read a detailed Givewell review or our accessible summary to learn more. On GiveWell's cost-effectiveness estimates (which it urges readers to take with a pinch of salt), AMF arguably beat deworming and cash transfer charities. For more information, read GiveWell's detailed review, or the more accessible Charity Science summary.
GiveWell's other recommendations
Boost health and cognitive development with salt fortification
The charities GAIN and ICCIDD run programs that fortify the salt that millions of poor people eat with iodine. There is strong evidence that this boosts their health and cognitive development; iodine deficiency causes pervasive mental impairment, as well as stillbirth and congenital abnormalities such as severe retardation. It can be done very cheaply on a mass scale, so is highly cost-effective. GAIN is registered in the US and ICCIDD in Canada (although Canadians can give to either via Charity Science, which for complex reasons helps others who donate tax-deductibly to other charities), allowing for especially efficient donations from these countries, and taxpayers from other countries can also often give to them tax-deductibly. For more information, read GiveWell's detailed reviews of GAIN and ICCIDD.
Educate millions in life-saving practices with Development Media International
Development Media International (DMI) produces radio and television broadcasts in developing countries that tell people about improved health practices that can save lives, especially those of young children. Examples of such practices include exclusive breastfeeding. DMI are conducting a randomized controlled trial of their program which has found promising indications of a large decrease in children's deaths. With more funds they would be able to reach millions of people, due to the unparalleled reach of broadcasting. For more information, read GiveWell's detailed review.
Bring badly-needed goods and health services to the poor with Living Goods
Living Goods is a non-profit which runs a network of people selling badly-needed health and household goods door-to-door in their communities in Uganda and Kenya and provide free health advice. A randomized controlled trial suggested that this caused a 25% reduction in under-5 mortality among other benefits. Products sold range from fortified foods and mosquito nets to cookstoves and contraceptives. Giving to Living Goods is an exciting opportunity to bring these badly needed goods and services to some of the poorest families in the world. For more information, read GiveWell's detailed review.