SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Nov 27, 2017) - GiveWell, a nonprofit that recommends charities according to how much good they accomplish, in terms of lives saved or improved per dollar donated, announced today its top charities for the 2017 giving season and Giving Tuesday (#givingtuesday). Updated annually, the top charities list features charities that are evidence-backed, thoroughly vetted, and underfunded. This year, GiveWell added two new top charities, Evidence Action's No Lean Season and Helen Keller International's vitamin A supplementation program, to its list of recommendations.

GiveWell was started in 2007 by two friends working in the finance industry who were trying to accomplish as much good as possible with their charitable donations. They wanted to know which charities had the most impact, and standard approaches to evaluating charities focused on metrics such as overhead costs, not effectiveness. The friends, Elie Hassenfeld and Holden Karnofsky, found that information about impact simply wasn't available and so they left their jobs to start GiveWell as a full-time project and to be resource for other donors. Today, thousands of donors use GiveWell's research to guide their giving decisions.

"Evaluating the effectiveness of charities on your own is hard. Many charities raise money based on their ability to market themselves, as opposed to their ability to change lives," said Elie Hassenfeld, Co-founder and Executive Director of GiveWell. "GiveWell's research focuses on measurable impact -- so donors know how much impact (in terms of lives saved or improved) they can have with each dollar donated."

The GiveWell top charities for the 2017 giving season work primarily in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. They are:

  • Against Malaria Foundation, which distributes insecticide-treated nets to prevent deaths from malaria.
  • Four charities that support programs to treat children for parasitic worm infections (deworming programs), which may lead to increased income later in life:
    • END Fund's deworming program
    • Evidence Action's Deworm the World Initiative
    • Schistosomiasis Control Initiative
    • Sightsavers' deworming program
  • Evidence Action's No Lean Season (NEW), which provides no-interest loans to poor rural households during the time of seasonal income and food insecurity ('lean season') in rural northern Bangladesh.
  • GiveDirectly, which distributes cash to very poor individuals.
  • Helen Keller International's vitamin A supplementation program (NEW), which prevents deaths from childhood diseases.
  • Malaria Consortium's seasonal malaria chemoprevention program, which distributes preventive anti-malarial drugs to children to prevent deaths from malaria.

For more information or to donate to any of these organizations, visit GiveWell collects no fees on donations to its recommended charities. Anyone can access GiveWell's research for free on its website.

About GiveWell

GiveWell is a nonprofit dedicated to finding and recommending outstanding giving opportunities for all. GiveWell pioneered a new approach to charitable giving by vetting charities' impact in terms of the lives they save or improve with each donation rather than just their overhead costs. Since 2007, GiveWell has directed more than $260 million to its recommended charities. Thousands of donors rely on GiveWell's free research to help focus their charitable giving. Learn more at or follow @GiveWell.

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Media contact:
Michelle Faulkner
Big Swing Communications

+1 617-510-6998