I first learned about The Smile Train when Steven Levitt posted about the charity on his Freakonomnics blog. Normally I am skeptical about donating to an organization of which I’ve never heard, but as Levitt is an award-winning economist, I immediately figured The Smile Train would not be one of those charities where 95 percent of the funds received goes to pay for administrative costs and the other 5 percent actually helps people. (Behold the credibility of the private sector.)
As I read the rest of Levitt’s post I realized that assumption was the case—100 percent of a donation goes to cleft lip and palate surgery for children in developing countries. (Levitt delves into the details of how The Smile Train is able to accomplish so much.)
Anyway, The Smile Train is a worthy charity for holiday season and end of tax year giving.