Just in time for the holiday charity season, the charity analysis group GiveWell has announced what it says are the three best charities in the world for helping the world's most poverty-stricken people.

GiveWell is a respected organization that catalogs and analyzes hundreds of charities dedicated to addressing global poverty, and endorses those that show the best evidence of helping the greatest number of poor people most effectively, and soon. They subscribe to the simple notion that charity dollars should flow to the areas of greatest need, an idea put forth by the prominent ethicist Peter Singer. (Singer supports GiveWell, and has his own similar charity recommendation group). In short, if you care about poverty and those who suffer from its effects, donating to these groups will provide the most help per dollar to the neediest people.

The three charities, in no particular order:

- Give Directly, which sends donor dollars directly to poor Kenyans.

- Schistosomiasis Control Initiative, which creates and runs deworming programs in sub-Saharan Africa.

- Deworm the World initiative by Evidence Action, which also supports deworming programs, with a greater emphasis on influencing governments.

'Tis the season (to give to poor people and get rid of those damn worms).

[Photo: AP]