Compassion in Top 1 Percent of Fiscally Responsible Charities

Compassion International, the world's largest Christian child development organization, is in the top one percent of charities in terms of fiscal responsibility, according to an independent charity evaluator.

For eight straight years, Compassion has been awarded the highest rating - four stars - by Charity Navigator for responsible management of its finances.

Charity Navigator is the nation's largest independent evaluator of charities. It evaluates more than 5,400 charities each year.

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"Only one percent of the charities we rate have received at least eight consecutive four-star evaluations, indicating that Compassion International consistently executes its mission in a fiscally responsible way, and out performs most other charities in America," said Charity Navigator president and CEO Ken Berger, in a statement released Wednesday. "This 'exceptional' designation from Charity Navigator differentiates Compassion International from its peers and demonstrates to the public it is worthy of their trust."

Founded in 1952, the ministry has served more than 1 million children in 25 of the world's poorest countries through nearly 5,000 local churches. The organization has described its programs as "unapologetically Christian" and notes that every Compassion project is connected to a Christian church or ministry, although it welcomes all children to participate in projects regardless of their faith.

More than 80 percent of the ministry's expenditure is used towards program activities for needy children.

Compassion hopes the high rating from Charity Navigator will encourage people to donate to the ministry. It notes that as a result of the economic downturn, charitable giving has also gone down and people who do donate are being more careful about what organization they give to.

"Now more than ever, the fiscal integrity of both private and public organizations are justly scrutinized by government officials and private citizens alike," commented Compassion President Dr. Wess Stafford. "A cornerstone practice for us has always been our commitment to financial stewardship to both the children we serve and the sponsors and donors who trust us with their hard-earned money. We are honored to again receive this significant recognition."

Compassion was founded by the Rev. Everett Swanson in 1952 to provide Korean War orphans with food, shelter, education, health care, and Christian training. The ministry, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., has since expanded to serve in over two dozen countries.

The ministry is the world's largest one-to-one child development and sponsorship organization. For $38 a month, a child can be provided opportunities for education, health and personal development.

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