How to avoid being scammed when contributing to Ukraine-related charities

Posted at 12:19 AM, Feb 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-27 00:19:40-05

(LEX 18) — As the invasion in Ukraine continues, it’s natural for people to want to help those impacted by donating to charity organizations, according to the Better Business Bureau. A local spokesperson for the group, Heather Clary, told LEX 18 about ways people can avoid being scammed when they donate.

“Whether it’s a weather disaster at home or a war-torn area overseas, the con artists can say ‘were helping too, give us your money,’ and that money goes nowhere but their pockets,” Clary said.

To avoid being scammed, she says it’s important people donate to organizations that have a track record in the countries impacted.

“You want an organization that knows what it's doing, that can get money where it needs to be, as quickly as possible, so it can do the most good,” Clary said.

She said it’s common for scammers to seek you out.

“If you just get vague requests for giving to a cause, pulls [at] your heartstrings but doesn't really tell you what the money is going for, and how it's going to help, that's when you may want to reconsider,” Clary said.

The bureau has a website,, which Clary said can make the vetting process easier. On the site are questions you can ask yourself while looking at potential organizations, and a full list of accountability standards the organization believes trustworthy charities should meet.

The Better Business Bureau has accredited the following nationally-soliciting charities which are involved in Ukraine relief: Catholic Relief Services, Direct Relief, GlobalGiving, International Medical Corps, International Rescue Committee, Operation USA, Save the Children, and United States Association for UNHCR.