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Think before you buy pink

Before you purchase those pink ribbon products you want to make sure the donation reaches the people who need it most. (WCCU)

October is breast cancer awareness month and you may be seeing a lot of pink ribbon products online, at the grocery store or even at charity events. Before you purchase those pink products you want to make sure the donation reaches the people who need it most and that is why the Better Business Bureau of Central Illinois said before you donate your dollars it is best to research.

“With breast cancer awareness we certainly do see a spike in organizations popping up left and right -- long on emotion, but short on results when it comes to sending those donations to actual charities,” vice president of the Better Business Bureau of Central Illinois, Jessica Tharp said.

Tharp warned to be cautious of scams and said if unsure about how much of your donation is benefiting the cause, do your research carefully.

“You'll see products out there like teddy bears, key chains and bracelets and all kinds of things claiming to support breast cancer research or awareness,” Tharp said. “What exactly does that mean what kind of results are produced with your purchase or your donation -- that is the information you want as a consumer."

Tharp said legitimate organizations should tell you directly how much of your contribution is going toward the cause.

Susan G. Komen was founded in 1982 with a mission to invest in research that will help prevent and cure breast cancer. Public relations and marketing director of Susan G. Komen Memorial affiliate in Peoria, Katie Parker said 80 percent of donations benefit national research while 20 percent go towards fundraising and administration. Parker said majority of the donations the Peoria affiliate receive help the community.

“So much of the funds stay local and of course we're supporting national research as well,” Parker said. “Up to 75 percent of what we raise right here at the Peoria memorial affiliate stays inside of our 36 county service area.”

Tharp said you also have the right to ask for detailed disclosures about a charity's spending. You can use resources like bbb.org or charitynavigator.org to verify the trustworthiness of any organization you donate to.

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