Our Top Charities

Donate to high-impact, cost-effective charities—backed by evidence and analysis

Last updated: December 2022

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Give to cost-effective, evidence-backed charities

We search for charities that save or improve lives the most per dollar. These are the best we’ve found. Supported by 40,000+ hours of research annually.(1)

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Donate based on evidence—not marketing

Even well-meaning charities can fail to have impact. We provide evidence-backed analysis of effectiveness.

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Pick a charity or give to our Top Charities Fund

We grant from our Top Charities Fund to the charities where we believe donations will help the most. Either way, we take zero fees.

Charity 1 of 4

Medicine to prevent malaria

Overview

Malaria kills over 600,000 people annually, mostly children under 5 in sub-Saharan Africa.(2) Seasonal malaria chemoprevention is preventive medicine that saves children’s lives. It is given during the four months of the year when malaria infection rates are especially high.

COST-EFFECTIVENESS

About $7 to protect a child from malaria.(3) In 2021, we directed funding to the Malaria Consortium to support this program at an estimated average cost-effectiveness of $5,000 per life saved.(4)

Compare to most charities’ programs

EVIDENCE OF IMPACT

Exceptionally strong. Many high-quality studies of seasonal malaria chemoprevention have consistently found strong impact. Malaria Consortium conducts high-quality ongoing monitoring.

Compare to most charities’ programs

TOP ORGANIZATION IN THIS AREA
African child being given medicineAfrican child being given medicine
An SMC Community Distributor in Burkina Faso shows an infant a strip for measuring malnutrition, which may be done alongside delivery of the antimalarial medicine. Photo credit: Malaria Consortium/Sophie Garcia
Charity 2 of 4

Nets to prevent malaria

OVERVIEW

Malaria kills over 600,000 people annually, mostly children under 5 in sub-Saharan Africa.(5) Nets save lives. Recipients of nets hang and sleep under them so they are not bitten by malaria-carrying mosquitoes.

COST-EFFECTIVENESS

About $5 to provide one net.(6) In 2021, we directed funding to the Against Malaria Foundation to support this program at an estimated average cost-effectiveness of $5,500 per life saved.(7)

Compare to most charities’ programs

EVIDENCE OF IMPACT

Exceptionally strong. Many high-quality studies of nets have consistently found strong impact. The Against Malaria Foundation conducts high-quality ongoing monitoring.

Compare to most charities’ programs

TOP ORGANIZATION IN THIS AREA
Mosquito netMosquito net
Photo credit: Against Malaria Foundation
Charity 3 of 4

Supplements to prevent vitamin A deficiency

OVERVIEW

Vitamin A deficiency leaves children vulnerable to infections and can lead to death. We attribute over 200,000 children's deaths to vitamin A deficiency each year.(8) This program saves lives by providing vitamin A supplements to children under 5 years old.

COST-EFFECTIVENESS

About $1 to deliver a vitamin A supplement.(9) In 2021, we directed funding to Helen Keller International to support this program at an estimated average cost-effectiveness of $3,500 per life saved.(10)

Compare to most charities’ programs

EVIDENCE OF IMPACT

Very strong. Many high-quality studies of vitamin A supplementation show strong impact. Helen Keller International conducts high-quality ongoing monitoring.

Compare to most charities’ programs

TOP ORGANIZATION IN THIS AREA
Baby being given vitamin ABaby being given vitamin A
Photo credit: Helen Keller International
Charity 4 of 4

Cash incentives for routine childhood vaccines

OVERVIEW

In Nigeria, 43% of infants did not receive all recommended childhood vaccines in 2019.(11) This program provides cash transfers to incentivize caregivers to bring babies to clinics for routine childhood vaccinations, which prevent disease and reduce child mortality. It operates in North West Nigeria.

COST-EFFECTIVENESS

About $160 to vaccinate an infant.(12) In 2020, we directed funding to New Incentives to support this program at an estimated average cost-effectiveness of $5,000 per life saved.(13)

Compare to most charities’ programs

EVIDENCE OF IMPACT

Very strong. A high-quality study of New Incentives' program found strong impact. New Incentives conducts high-quality ongoing monitoring.

Compare to most charities’ programs

TOP ORGANIZATIONS IN THIS AREA
Poster at a clinic promoting awareness of the New Incentives program and the benefits of vaccination. Poster at a clinic promoting awareness of the New Incentives program and the benefits of vaccination.
Poster at a clinic promoting awareness of the New Incentives program and the benefits of vaccination. Photo credit to New Incentives
Photo credit: Malaria Consortium/Sophie Garcia
Man feeding a child which a woman is holdingMan feeding a child which a woman is holding

GiveWell's Top Charities Fund

This is the best fit for donors who prioritize cost-effectiveness and desire a high level of confidence in their impact. We take zero fees and use our most up-to-date research to grant your gift where we believe it will help the most.

We typically grant this pool of funds to one or more of our recommended charities each quarter. Once we grant your donation, we’ll email you to let you know which charity or charities we selected and what we expect your donation will accomplish.

You can find more information about the Top Charities Fund, including a list of past distributions, here.


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