Our principles and standards

What you can expect from us

A gift is more than a transaction of dollars and cents. It’s a relationship built on trust, confidence and respect. That’s what you can expect from us. From keeping our rivers full and flowing to protecting valuable wildlife habitat, we understand that the impact we make originates with our donors.  You can rest assured that your contribution will be put to immediate and effective use fixing freshwater.

Additionally, we measure and report the outcomes of every restoration action we take, so you’ll know the precise results you’re helping us achieve for America’s rivers. When you give, we make it count.

Access. Transparency. Accountability.

You’ll always have access to the information that matters most to you.

The Freshwater Trust has received the highest possible gold rating from GuideStar, an organization dedicated to providing information that increases transparency, improves decision making, and encourages charitable giving, with information on more than 650,000 nonprofit organizations.

Our annual reports disclose financial data for the calendar year and share stories on how your dollars have been put to use making a difference for freshwater ecosystems. We hire a third party to complete a rigorous audit every year to verify that your dollars are put to use, as intended.

The Donor Bill of Rights

The Donor Bill of Rights was created by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP), the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), and the Giving Institute: Leading Consultants to Non-Profits. It has been endorsed by numerous organizations. We abide by their following principles:

Philanthropy is based on voluntary action for the common good. It is a tradition of giving and sharing that is primary to the quality of life. To assure that philanthropy merits the respect and trust of the general public, and that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in the nonprofit organizations and causes they are asked to support, we declare that all donors have these rights.

I. To be informed of the organization’s mission, of the way the organization intends to use donated resources, and of its capacity to use donations effectively for their intended purposes.

II. To be informed of the identity of those serving on the organization’s governing board, and to expect the board to exercise prudent judgment in its stewardship responsibilities.

III. To have access to the organization’s most recent financial statements.

IV. To be assured their gifts will be used for the purposes for which they were given.

V. To receive appropriate acknowledgement and recognition.

VI. To be assured that information about their donation is handled with respect and with confidentiality to the extent provided by law.

VII. To expect that all relationships with individuals representing organizations of interest to the donor will be professional in nature.

VIII. To be informed whether those seeking donations are volunteers, employees of the organization or hired solicitors.

IX. To have the opportunity for their names to be deleted from mailing lists that an organization may intend to share.

X. To feel free to ask questions when making a donation and to receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers.

Code of Ethics

We agree with and abide by the AFP code of ethics. Read about how this code works for you as a donor.