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Susan G. Komen for the Cure Most Valued Charity: 4 Reasons Why

Susan G. Komen for the Cure is the most valued nonprofit and the cause that people are most likely to donate to, according to the annual survey of nonprofit brands by Harris Interactive. For trust, Susan G. Komen for the Cure ranked second, only behind St. Jude Research Hospital.

Harris ranks the most admired charities each year. For 2010, it surveyed Americans about more than 1,000 nonprofits. The 10 brands to which respondents said they would be most likely to donate were: Susan G. Komen for the Cure, American Cancer Society, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Goodwill Industries, Salvation Army, Cleveland Clinic, Heifer Project International, Make-a-Wish Foundation, Mayo Clinic, and American Red Cross. All of these charities were also among the most trusted, but three others were also most trusted but did not appear on the most likely to be donated to list. Those are Doctors Without Borders, the Smithsonian Institution, and Habitat for Humanity International.

How does a brand like Susan G. Komen become so well known and loved?

Here are four factors that likely put it over the top:

  1. A great story. Nancy G. Brinker, the charity’s founder, promised her dying sister, Susan G. Komen, she would do everything in her power to end breast cancer forever. That was in 1982. Brinker has never stopped fighting and is responsible for arraying an army to wage that battle on behalf of her sister.

  2. A villain that everyone loves to hate. Virtually everyone has been touched by breast cancer, whether personally, or through a relative or friend. The Race for the Cure takes place everywhere and and makes heroes of millions of people of all ages, genders, and health conditions. Breast cancer is a foe everyone wants to join up to fight. It wasn’t always that way, but Komen has helped remind everyone of the stakes.

  3. Ubiquity. Through its signature Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, and a multitude of corporate business partnerships, Komen has built a grassroots organization supported by and serving millions of women and men around the globe. It also partners with governments and advocacy groups in 50 countries to raise breast health awareness and provide treatment and support. As a Global Goodwill Ambassador to the U.N.’s World Health Organization and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Brinker rallies world leaders and governments to her cause.

  4. Keeping its promise. Komen has funded almost $40 million in international research and outreach since the charity was founded. This year, Komen will invest another $50-$60 million into research, with some $20 million targeted to cancer vaccines and other cancer prevention efforts. The organization has also launched a campaign to explore more cost-effective screening for women’s cancers, and advocates for screening and access to treatment for all cancer sufferers in the U.S.

All of the most valued charities on the Harris list have similar attributes. They are what branding in the nonprofit world is all about.

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Susan G. Komen for the Cure Most Valued Charity: 4 Reasons Why originally appeared on About.com Nonprofit Charitable Orgs on Monday, March 8th, 2010 at 17:15:11.

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