Every year I remind people not to put money into the red kettles circulated by the Salvation Army, for a variety of reasons we are all familiar with.
As has been noted here before, it is always a good idea to know the charities we are donating to. Make sure the money is well spent, and on issues that reflect *your* values, not those of some committee sitting in an office in DC or New York City.
I am sure we all have links to charities that can use the help. Feel free to post them, as well as why you prefer to give to those charities.