Depression has yet another hidden side, it stops me writing, hence the shortage of recent posts; however a headline in today’s Mirror that infuriated me so much it broke the barrier – “Top charities spend 60% of cash raised on private firm which hounds people to donate”.
I’ve argued for many years that far too much money given to these agencies, fails to reach the people the organisations purport to aid; I’ve even disappointed my 84 year old mum, who readers know I adore, when I refuse to buy the raffle tickets she receives twice a year, regular as clockwork, from several of these orgs. For me the Top ‘Charities’ no longer qualify as such, and it’s time for the Charities Commission to do its job and remove this status, lets call them what they are Big Businesses.
I worked in the voluntary sector for many years, providing a real service to local people. Such projects are ran by regular people, who find themselves forced to battle with these multi-million pound companies, in their efforts to raise less money than Stroke pay for fund-raising to keep their service going. I do not believe this is Right and I’m not convinced people who donate hard earned money, expect it to go to the same company who then hassle them by calling them at home with a Hard Sell?
I understand and share the belief in philanthropy, but I want to know my money is going to help the people in need. I would suggest if everyone donated to local projects, the ones that work at grass root level with the most vulnerable; they’d not only continue to benefit from the good feeling such giving gives, but would also witness a real positive difference in their communities. It could mean the local foodbank feeding a hungry child, the nearby hospice helping another person dying of cancer, or the neighbourhood youth project supporting a young woman at risk of abuse. The real voluntary sector, the projects close to home, operate on a fraction of the money the ‘Top Charities; spend on self promotion.
Next time you decide to give the spare change in your pocket to a ‘chugger’, buy a raffle ticket, or make a tax deductible donation to charity, check out your local projects, I expect theres one that fits your personal ideology; but the difference your money will make is monumental.