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Published: Thursday, July 14, 2011, 12:01 a.m.

Where your charity dollars go

We've all heard pleas to give more to support our communities in hard times. Snohomish County-based charities in 2009 directed more than $300 million to causes, here and abroad. How people chose to give illuminates our priorities. Where are donations going and what percentage directly supports charitable programs?

Charities in Washington must register with the Office of the Secretary of State and report their finances. Certain organizations are exempt, including churches and volunteer-run groups raising less than $25,000 a year.

This table breaks down charity revenue by type of work, based on their respective missions. It only incorporates registered Snohomish County charities for 2009 — the most-recent year with complete financial information.

Organizational focusNumber of charities2009 revenueExpensesProgram spendingPercent to programEnding assets
Foundation/ service group20$62,516,580$59,743,859$50,337,02684%$93,181,759
Senior citizens5$15,364,264$15,579,237$13,164,03484%$10,160,244
Youth services9$13,339,598$12,726,129$10,452,30582%$20,814,434
Low-income assistance14$11,431,246$10,893,051$8,742,39680%$8,500,678
PTA and school groups83$4,301,738$4,273,000$2,080,40549%$2,003,742
History/ museum6$3,990,501$2,874,800$2,278,52579%$27,735,585
Sport clubs and boosters16$2,720,292$2,664,923$2,243,22284%$955,426
Crime victims3$2,486,803$2,377,064$1,936,85381%$634,969
Public safety8$392,872$392,315$326,97783%$1,289,847

Churches and other exempt organizations aren't included. Data listed here provide only a snapshot.

The state monitors how much of a charity's expenses go toward programs.

“It's not a perfect science,” said Rebecca Sherrell, manager of the Charities Program for the secretary of state. The percentage gives an idea how organizations spend donor dollars.

Salaries, rent and supplies might not count toward program expenses. Commercial fundraisers often siphon away money.

Top 30 Snohomish County charities

OrganizationCity2009 revenueExpensesProgram spendingPercent to programEnding assets
Compass HealthEverett$38,007,790$39,276,886$33,128,10985$23,968,438
Providence Hospice and Home Care of Snohomish CountyEverett$22,738,966$24,144,745$20,797,47586$0
Volunteers of America of Western WashingtonEverett$22,813,199$22,723,126$19,992,75088$15,280,157
Community Health Center of Snohomish CountyEverett$23,768,362$22,184,990$17,507,12379$46,973,685
Young Men's Christian Association of Snohomish County (YMCA)Everett$22,277,496$19,855,176$17,678,96889$43,944,730
Josephine Sunset HomeStanwood$15,313,716$14,283,912$12,864,27190$13,936,513
Senior Services of Snohomish CountyMukilteo$13,626,291$13,995,928$12,107,48687$6,917,261
United Way of Snohomish CountyEverett$9,929,200$9,536,264$7,726,69382$12,582,008
Northsound Association for Catholic EducationEverett$6,837,361$7,024,244$4,300,74361$17,054,694
Boys & Girls Clubs of Snohomish CountyEverett$6,737,276$6,784,195$5,656,46083$7,536,089
Evergreen ManorEverett$5,284,391$5,261,041$4,728,09390$2,289,934
Housing HopeEverett$4,220,210$5,048,729$4,333,27186$18,205,796
Smithwright ServicesLynnwood$3,994,701$4,017,965$3,644,35091$1,166,526
Breast Cancer Prevention FundEverett$3,327,081$3,576,916$3,219,25090$640,639
Everett Gospel MissionEverett$3,846,701$3,557,101$2,812,40580$340,790
Aglow InternationalEdmonds$3,265,267$3,373,645$2,220,87366$177,400
Progressive Animal Welfare SocietyLynnwood$4,300,893$3,152,349$2,363,91675$7,211,359
Providence General FoundationEverett$3,825,399$2,949,731$2,480,93184$13,820,318
Work OpportunitiesLynnwood$2,540,570$2,937,246$2,631,92490$3,100,364
Village Community ServicesArlington$2,681,437$2,714,209$2,252,92783$2,733,992
EdLab Group FoundationLynnwood$2,110,918$2,674,385$1,937,38272$891,138
Washington Vocational ServicesMountlake Terrace$2,610,525$2,587,976$2,243,12087$1,542,145
Cocoon HouseEverett$2,627,497$2,583,772$2,068,70181$5,116,209
Snohomish County Council of the Society of St. Vincent DePaulEverett$2,948,530$2,517,365$2,486,24399$3,440,134
Little Red School HouseEverett$2,136,547$2,347,581$1,962,57984$4,015,863
Work Force Development CenterMukilteo$2,033,049$2,171,182$1,895,10587$2,917,085
Pasado's Safe HavenMonroe$2,307,550$2,012,510$1,569,46578$6,803,874
Mount Baker Council, Boy Scouts of AmericaEverett$2,669,208$1,962,942$1,608,17082$4,775,689
Sherwood Community ServicesLake Stevens$1,642,365$1,783,853$1,345,35075$1,365,570

Charities of note

OrganizationCity2009 revenueExpensesProgram servicesPercent to programEnding assets
Christmas House of EverettSnohomish$269,751$199,814$198,822100%$237,684
YMCA of Snohomish County (YMCA)Everett$22,277,496$19,855,176$17,678,96889%$43,944,730
Northwest Organization for Animal Help (NOAH)Stanwood$2,256,129$1,631,450$1,353,92483%$6,635,258
Marysville PTA Council 7.4Marysville$20,740$22,990$12,46655%$7,093
Operation Lookout National Center for Missing YouthEverett$1,409,711$1,362,473$163,01912%$18,580
Quilters AnonymousEdmonds$94,630$88,178$51,77559%$62,413

Christmas House of Everett: Provides holiday gifts to children of low-income families. In 2009, almost 100 percent of $199,814 in expenses went to the mission.
Northwest Organization for Animal Help: A Stanwood nonprofit dedicated to preventing the euthanasia of healthy dogs and cats through adoptions and other services. It raised $2,256,129 in 2009 and 83 percent of expenses were for programs.
Marysville PTA Council 7.4 Of 2009 expenses of $22,990, 55 percent went to programs.
Operation Lookout National Center for Missing Youth: Based in Everett, a mere 12 percent of $1,362,473 of 2009 expenses went to programs to alert the public about missing young people and provide help for families.
Quilters Anonymous: This Edmonds-based charity raised $94,630 in 2009, with 59 percent going to programs.

For more information about specific Washington charities, go to the Secretary of State's website.
Story tags » Charity


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