Charity (who gives / who don't) why?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 20, 2008 11:20 AM GMT
    I received a letter from St Jude Childrens Hospital to purchase some items, all proceed will go towards the treatment of a child in need and I figured y not its a good cause and I love doing it 4 them and now their automatically taking out $ from my account which is not much but if it helps a child with his or her treatment thats great.

    This is not asking 4 donation, I'm just saying, do u have a favorite charity that u help out, I 2 might wanna join.

    I did run a 5k for breast cancer awareness, that was fun. I was waiting 4 a friend and a female, who happened to walk by (I 4got her name, if I see her I'll remember) looked at me,

    smiles, "you look like u run, u have a nice shape,...do u run?"

    "yeah, some times"

    "how often do u run?"

    "3x's a week"

    "there's a 5k run in Carlbads 4 breast cancer awareness u should sign up, its a good cause,"

    "yeah, I will,"

    "I'll see you then," smiled and walked away

    next month, I did see her and we ran 2gether. icon_biggrin.gif
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    Jan 20, 2008 5:46 PM GMT
    We tend to support with "in kind" donations rather than cash for a couple of reasons - 1) we don't have a lot of spare cash and 2) it spreads the word about what we do, so maybe one day we WILL have some spare cash.

    For example, we've trained pro bono kids from a gay shelter who have self-image problems. We've donated training sessions and body composition analyses as door prizes at charitable events.

    We also figure we can offer training or services valued at anywhere from $60 to $300 or more (when we had our florist in Lafayette we offered an arrangement of a dozen roses per month for a year once - 12 times $60 is a nice donation....) and the silent auction set will bid that up into quite a bit of money.
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    Jan 20, 2008 6:02 PM GMT
    I give $10 a month to HRC and I used to give $1,000 a year to Lifelong Aids Alliance in Seattle. I'm researching the local HIV/AIDS support/advocacy/education groups here in Chicago to see which one I want to give to.

    I always donate that extra $1 when I check out at Pet Smart. I am careful when I donate at the check out at the grocery store because some charitable organizations are, or are administrated by organizations that have fundamentally different world views than myself. I will not donate to the United Way general fund because it supports the Boy Scouts of America (see my second post on this thread here for details http://realjock.com/topic/86227/)

    I say choose who you donate to carefully so you can truly feel good about it.
  • cowboyathlete

    Posts: 1346

    Jan 20, 2008 6:24 PM GMT
    The Kroger stores where I live have an easy indirect way to donate. A percentage of the profits they make go to a charity of your choice (it uses a share card system). I alternate between the Greater Houston Off Road Biking Association and the Houston Buyers Club. The latter is an AIDS nutritional supplement organization.
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    Jan 20, 2008 7:09 PM GMT
    I tend to donate more to local food pantries (people need food-- think Maslow's pyramid) or buy products that donate part of the profits to charity (Lance armstrong foundation-Nike products, Columbia, etc...)
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    Jan 20, 2008 7:18 PM GMT
    Those are great charities, guys. Thanks 4 ur input. icon_biggrin.gif
  • Buddha

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    Jan 20, 2008 8:23 PM GMT
    I tend to avoid donating money, but when I do I feel kind of ashamed for wasting money.

    I feel too desensitized to donate through organizations so I like giving money to people directly. I know the arguments against it are that they might use it for drugs, alcohol or perhaps they're only collecting money for someone at a higher rank but there is still the possibility of them simply using it buy food or supporting them in another way.
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    Jan 20, 2008 9:04 PM GMT
    I give financially to an organization who actively works for World Relief (primarily with aids in Africa) and the Alzheimer's Assn...since my mother died of the disease I'll give gladly to help find a cure and save others the pain of watching their loved one suffer like that.
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    Jan 20, 2008 9:29 PM GMT
    i give money every month to HRC also... they're an amazing organization fighting for OUR rights every single day. icon_smile.gif
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    Jan 20, 2008 9:46 PM GMT
    I volunteer a lot, but I am against "donating" to people on the street. I'd rather either help out or donate to groups where I can see exactly where my money goes.
  • irishkcguy

    Posts: 780

    Jan 20, 2008 10:01 PM GMT
    I think it's important in a discussion like this to stress that people can also give their time in addition to or in place of money. Many people don't have a lot of money to give to charity but they can volunteer and get involved by giving of their time, talent and passion.

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    Jan 20, 2008 10:04 PM GMT
    I give monthly to a local homeless shelter. I think when possible it's best to give to an organization that you can check out in person. Volunteer time before you give money.

    One thing I learned a long time ago working with Habitat for Humanity-- if a charity is really doing the best work, there will always be controversy. With Habitat, people were upset when some home recipients could not repay their loans. I remember Millard Fuller lecturing them-- if everyone could pay back the loans, then they were not building houses for people who really needed them. Same goes for everything else-- charities taking care of those really needy will have recipients who die, who fail, who are crazy, etc. Just like PETA and the euthenized animals-- if they take the most needy animals, many more will have to he killed than if they took less needy animals. The only way I can tell which charities are worthwhile is to look at it first hand.

    With Habitat, I went to India for a month (on my own, not a tour), and saw the people building, and worked a bit, before I gave them money. With the homeless shelter, I try to volunteer when possible, although at this point my time is more valuable as billable hours/money donation than as a donation itself.

    The one thing I never do is give money to telephone solicitors. Almost always a veyr low percentage of such money actually ends up going to the charity.
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    Jan 20, 2008 10:25 PM GMT
    Hey Tank and Irish great posts.

    The secret of charity, when you are personally donating your own time and skills and not cash, is that it helps us just as much as it helps the people we help.

    Nothing has changed my life like working (as opposed to donating) to charity.

    The experience with Habitat in India must have been fantastic. I am working for historic preservation and water conservation in the Rajasthan desert.

    My charity work got started in the early 90's when I was so depressed. I lost my mom, my lover, and my best friend (stroke, AIDS, AIDS) all in one six month period.

    There was a fantastic guy in LA who was called Billy Gonzales. He has long since passed from AIDS himself. He kept himself going by running a food kitchen for people who were shut in with HIV.

    I was stuck on my ass with profound depression and he wrapped me up and got me using my Ford Ranger pickup truck to deliver meals to HIV shut ins.

    It was a hell of a lot of work and tremendously painful to see so much suffering but it helped me so much. That is the selfish way to look at it. The other side is that those men (they were 90% men) had no other way to eat, no money, no family, absolutely nada.

    I have never stopped doing this work and I hope that I will be able to keep doing it as long as I am able.

    G-d and life have been good to me. I have a lot. I believe that having a lot means that there are high expectations and obligations that go with that (this used to be called noblesse oblige).

    In recent years I have been lucky to meet real philanthoripists (not with the kind of po-dunk resources I have).

    What gets me everytime is that what you can do with your brain and your back is so much more powerful than what you can do with your wallet.

    Cheers and peace
    Terry
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    Jan 20, 2008 10:29 PM GMT
    tanktop said

    The one thing I never do is give money to telephone solicitors. Almost always a veyr low percentage of such money actually ends up going to the charity.


    I agree about the telephone solicitors. Even if they are representing a reputable organization, they are often very aggressive to the point that it turns me off. I was recently berated by woman on the phone collecting for a local law enforcement charity because I told her that I was currently up to my charity spending limit. She asked who I was donating to and I told her about HRC. She told me I was foolish and that HRC didn't protect me, the police did. During the course of the argument she actually made some decent points, but I was very put off by her attitude. I make it a policy never to be guilted or bullied into charity.
  • Artesin

    Posts: 482

    Jan 20, 2008 11:16 PM GMT
    I donate to the SPCA and savethewildlife. Wolves getting gunned down in Alaska isn't my idea of a sympathetic nation. I hate shelters that put animals down after 3 days and donating to a cause that seeks to get rid of that is a nice feeling.
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    Jan 20, 2008 11:37 PM GMT
    I give to several charities but I always check to see what percent of their budget goes to admin costs and what their beliefs are. I stopped giving to the Salvation Army after I studied their beliefs. I'm still torn with the boy scouts because I think the homophobia is mainly coming from the higher levels and not the local troops. Besides if it weren't for gay men they probably would have far fewer eagle scouts!
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    Jan 20, 2008 11:45 PM GMT
    Good reminders to check the Admin percentages. I've heard that the rule of thumb is that anything under 25% Admin costs is decent, although that could be different for the smallest local charities.
    This was timely, too--less than 20 minutes after I read this post, I picked up the Atlanta paper--quick snippet below----really pathetic...

    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
    Published on: 01/20/08


    A Lawrenceville charity raised $3.1 million in 2006 to help grateful parents find missing children.

    It spent $365,000 doing its work.

    The difference, nearly $2.8 million, or about 88 percent of the money raised for fiscal 2006, went into the pockets of the professional fund-raisers the charity used.

    Between 1998 and 2006, the Committee for Missing Children raised a total of $21 million and paid $18.6 million of it to the fund-raisers.
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    Jan 20, 2008 11:53 PM GMT
    I enjoy giving to charity and political organizations, but it's been a long time since I've been in a financial position to do so. When I have the money, I generally like to support HRC and Pride Foundation, an organization that supports GLBT causes in the Northwest region and provides a lot of scholarship money to GLBT students and straight ally students.
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    Jan 21, 2008 12:23 AM GMT
    Having volunteered/worked in the charitable sector for 30 years, I applaud all of you guys for giving...you're great!!!

    3 sites that are good in determining admin vs. program costs are --

    http://www.charitynavigator.org/

    http://www.guidestar.org/

    http://www.charitywatch.org/
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    Jan 21, 2008 12:35 AM GMT

    Perhaps this is an odd one, but I spend time on site and donate to a nursing home. So many folks end up there with no family and no support. They often need the simplest of things, body wash, decent soap. Some can't get special care if needed due to financial constraints.
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    Jan 21, 2008 1:36 AM GMT
    I kind of randomly give to charities but like to question what the charity really is and if the money is used wisely. I also give to organizations that help promote rights and freedoms (eff for instance http://www.eff.org/ ) and similar things.

    After giving this thought once, I realized that I gave a lot in terms or money and time to "personal" charity cases. That is friends and family in financial and emotional need. I think that I am good also at generally "listening" to other peoples problems. I think if every family or capable person picked one personal "charity case" to look after, the world would be a better place. Many people just want to know someone cares. That in a sense is more valuable than money.

    One more thing. I actually work for a company that helps non-profit organizations raise funds and promote various causes. It is pretty amazing to see the different ways that organization raise funds or promote causes so creatively. Some let you donate money is such a way for example that you buy livestock or farm supplies for villages and people around the world. You get to see pretty much what your money is going towards. The internet has gone a long way in helping charity.
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    Jun 05, 2011 9:26 PM GMT
    I'm currently doing a charity that's helping to build a school in Africa. I'm growing my hair out and when it's long enough (maybe 2 years from now) I'll cut it and donate it. My hair currently reaches my shoulders but in about 3 months it'll be at the top of my back. It grows extremely fast. I donate to charities because it feels good to help others in need icon_smile.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 05, 2011 9:45 PM GMT
    I give out money whenever i have the chance or opportunity
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 05, 2011 9:55 PM GMT
    Holly dead thread Batman!

    Why is this thread being resurrected after 3-years?