think before you donate infographic

Setting The Record Straight: Debunking False Internet Rumors

When you get the facts, you’ll rest assured knowing your donation supports a worthy cause.

Goodwill has a more than 118-year track record in providing services to people going through transition, whether due to military service, lack of education or work experience, mental or physical challenges, or being impacted by the criminal justice system.

Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia is designated by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. In fact, ours is the oldest nonprofit workforce development organization in Virginia, and is one of 152 autonomous, nonprofit Goodwill organizations nationwide that are each governed by a local volunteer board of directors.

We encourage you to research any charitable organizations you’d like to support to ensure they steward their resources responsibly and transparently.

Discover Goodwill has received the highest rating—Platinum—from GuideStar, which evaluates the finances, impact and stewardship of thousands of nonprofit organizations.

THE “MARK CURAN” MYTH

Mark Curran is a fictional Goodwill “owner” described in a widely circulated document on the internet. (Tip: no one “owns” a nonprofit.) The so-called “Think Before You Donate” document contains inaccurate information about several well-known and respected nonprofits, including UNICEF and the American Red Cross.

The Curran myth has been debunked numerous times, including this 2017 update from Snopes, a well-regarded internet fact-checking source. Goodwill Industries International Inc.’s official statement on the false information can also be found on its website.

The internet rumor mill is full of grossly inflated Goodwill CEO salary information. Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia’s IRS Form-990 includes the salaries of our CEO and executive team and can be found on our website or on GuideStar.com.

The CEO’s salary is set by the board of directors’ Compensation Committee, which considers benchmarking studies of comparable positions as well as the scope of responsibilities for our Goodwill. Duties include leading a values-based organization with 1,430 associates, a $79,000,000 operating budget, and a wide variety of state, federal and local regulatory and compliance requirements. Our CEO’s earnings total less than 0.65% of our annual operating budget.

THE “RYAN MUNCY” MYTH

The “Ryan Muncy” story originated back in 2017 and has been re-posted via social channels as new first-person posting purporting to be Mr. Muncy’s parent. Although the original Facebook posting contained a number of unfortunate inaccuracies and did not provide important context for the situation, we recognized the poster’s viewpoint and appreciated his desire to help. The young man with a disability was shopping with his case manager at a Goodwill store in a small Midwest town. He was referred to Goodwill from a local community agency in order that he might shop for clothing under a voucher program that the local Goodwill organization provided within that community.

That voucher program had limitations, as articulated by the concerned Facebook poster. More specifically, the voucher was for adults over the age of 18 who are in an emergency situation. Its value was $50. 

The young man received a voucher for his circumstances and both he and his case manager reported that they appreciated the service offered by the local Goodwill as well as the supplementary support by the individual who chose to purchase additional clothing for him.

Each Goodwill organization has different programs based on various needs of the community. Collectively, local, community-based Goodwill organizations provide job placement, training, career counseling, virtual skills training, mock interviews, dress etiquette, and résumé review to hundreds of thousands of people each year.