One, he can make a donation to Kiva, which funds microfinance loans to the poorest of the poor. (Kiva also allows you to put money forward to be lent. You get an e-mail telling you to whom it has been lent — we funded a wheel for a potter in Peru — and then another telling you when the loan has been repaid.)
Kiva has a positive evaluation from Charity Navigator — it’s transparent, largely independent of outside influence, and spends relatively little on administration. Here’s how Kiva works and here’s the loan page. (When you make a loan, they ask if you want to make an additional donation to help cover administrative expenses. Interestingly, you can’t make a donation unless you first make a loan.)
Second option: ANERA, the American Near East Refugee Aid. Founded after the 1967 war, it focuses on Palestinian refugees around the Middle East. It gets an A+ for transparency and accountability from CharityWatch. ANERA’s “about us” page is here (click through to donate).
Third: the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood. It’s exactly what it sounds like — an umbrella group devoted to supporting maternal and child health around the world. You can donate to them directly, or click through to one of the various groups that they support. Their website is here.
(For the record, while I work in development, I have no professional connection to any of these charities. I recommend them because I’ve seen their work in the field and/or have researched them and think they’re good.)