I have been a volunteer for several years, helping mainly with the Walk like Madd. When you sign up online they ask for all types of information that they do not need. I recruited family, friends and co workers and raised thousands of dollars for them. Only to find out that we were all being spammed incessantly by various MADD staff asking for more money. I called the national office and asked them to stop spamming everyone who I recruited. The women I talked to who said she was in charge of the Walks was snotty and she would see what she could do. We are all still being spammed! My friend who works for a very reputable charity told me that MADD has serious issues at the national level and is rate as a 1 star charity by Charity Navigator, and was give a "D" grade by the American Institute of Philanthropy. These ratings were due to poor financial management. They spend too much money on overhead and not enough on their mission.
It doesn't come as any surprise that MADD gets a one-star rating. While its intent is noble and worthy, it all boils down to MADD making money to pay the salaries and benefits of a very top heavy administration. It's certainly not used to assist well-trained volunteer advocates to do their job serving and advocating for victims and victim families of DUI. Volunteer advocate chapters are expected to BUY brochures and printed materials from MADD National headquarters to assist victims and raise public awareness. Year after year, we organized and ran MADD's signature Walk Like MADD fundraisers which garner thousands upon thousands of dollars in every community or region. Yet, we had to buy MADD materials for victims since all fundraising money goes directly to MADD National headquarters. If we're doing a community awareness program and want to hand out MADD brochures which include the victim services hotline number, we have to buy them. And then MADD wonders why we can't recruit and retain volunteer advocates. As for the organization itself, I agree with others that it's totally dysfunctional. One hand doesn't know what the other hand is doing. Only when we are fundraising, do we get any recognition. The revolving door of dedicated staff at the state and regional levels is enough to make our heads spin. They're not evaluated nor valued for their services in MADD's mission, only for the amount of money they can raise and forward to national headquarters. Year after year, it's the same thing despite the mounting complaints from lower echelon staff and volunteers. I volunteer for two other non-profits which value my time and dedication. Volunteers are brought together on a semi-annual basis so we can network our skill sets while meeting each other and know who's doing what. Both of those renown non-profits have longtime volunteers and no problem recruiting new volunteers. And lest I forget to mention, they have four-star ratings with Charity Navigator. Our MADD chapter slowly dissolved and MADD National doesn't even know it. I suspect they're simply re-cycling the number of victims we used to serve just to bolster their self-reported numbers for the current year's report. If you think MADD is serving victims as they report, I have a bridge to sell you. Simply put, they generate money to pay their own salaries and generous benefits. Trust Charity Navigator's one-star rating of MADD and donate to some other charity.
Review from CharityNavigator
I've lost three friends in three different drunk driving crashes. MADD helped me get through those rough periods because I knew that I could make a difference in making sure that others would never have to go through what my friends' families and I went through.
I have volunteered with madd for 12 years now! I even met Candy L. personally thank God for her for starting madd. I am a 3 time victim of DUI CRASHES! and honestly I wish madd was around when my only sibling was killed in 1978. the volunteers are the heart AND backbone of madd, we give of ourselves daily. The only thing I would change is to require ALL paid staff to be victims / survivors of DUI Crashes so that they would have the same passion all the volunteers have. Candy L. began this with volunteers, victims, survivors, there was no paid staff for a while, yes this org. has grown, but I seriously think Candy should be CEO of madd, as she knows & understands the mission better than any of us ever could.
I have been a member for over 20 years. They helped me through my own victim experience and have been both helpful and effective.