In the wake of Sandy's destruction, countless efforts will be made to help victims. Already, ABC/Disney has designated a "Day of giving," the National Football League and it's players association has pledged $1 million to the Red Cross and iTunes is directly accepting donations.
Countless calls will be made for the public to donate to charities large and small. Reporters can investigate charities to analyze their past performance. They can also arm the public with knowledge by instructing them in ways they can check out who they are donating money to before it leaves their pockets.
These tipsheets will help you get started:
In "Investigating nonprofits," John Martin of The Tampa Bay Times offers advice for tracking down information on nonprofits.
Ron Campbell of The Orange County Register gives a line-by-line overview of what reporters can find hidden in a form 990 in "Digging in to nonprofits."