In life, you are not living, unless you are giving

Discussion in 'Philanthropy' started by Harry30, 22nd Dec, 2018.

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  1. Harry30

    Harry30 Well-Known Member

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    I think it was Kirk Douglas who said that - ‘you are not living unless you are giving’.

    Anyway, as I grew older, I felt that Christmas was meaning less and less to me. Traipsing around shopping centres, the mad rush to buy presents for everyone, squabbles with distant family you see once a year for Christmas dinner.

    So, in recent years, I told my family not to buy me anything, and I would donate money (as much as I could afford) to a worthy charity. I choose a different charity each year after discussing it with the family.

    Last year I donated money to a women at work whose husband died of cancer and she had to look after 2 young children on her own. This year, I am giving money to St Kilda Mums, a charity that helps new mothers in the St Kilda area in Melbourne who may be struggling for various reasons, and they provide free baby stuff, support, etc. I found out about them some years ago when my kids moved beyond the baby phase and I had to find somewhere to send the no longer used cots, prams, etc. Volunteers from St Kilda Mums came around and collected the lot and found homes for everything.

    My approach is to double the amount of money I donate each year, which suggests I may have to stick with the corporate job for while longer.

    I don’t want to suggest I am some holly person, as I do this because it makes me feel good. So, in that sense, it is driven by an element of self interest.

    But take my word for it, it does make you feel pretty good.

    Merry Christmas everyone.
     
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  2. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    I would love to donate, however with the corporate greed out there, the cynical side of me, thinks that even if i donate, i dont know how much of my donation actually gets to the target
     
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  3. Rolf Latham

    Rolf Latham Inciteful (sic) Staff Member Business Plus Member

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    So if you'd like to donate and be sure to choose a charity where a 100 per cent goes to an end Charity.

    Ta

    Rolf
     
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  4. Harry30

    Harry30 Well-Known Member

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    Do research into the charity. Most are run on a shoe string, with largely volunteer labour.
     
  5. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    Good excuse! However, you could donate to Rotary where 100% goes to the cause.

    Note: in large organisations such as the Red Cross, administrative costs are necessary as emergency and even ongoing aid needs to be planned to be effective. Also, the money needs to be managed and tracked and those services aren’t free.

    In addition, the reality for many charities is that they need to employ fundraising companies because they collect more - even taking into account the fees - when they do it that way.
     
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  6. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    And how do you know which one 100% goes.
    Now, when i see someone in need instead of giving them money, i try and give them food or something non monetary
     
  7. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    And thats why i never donate to any of those who hassle you on the street or shopping centres.
    I know theyre on a comission/salary,
    Plus most of them, ive never heard of
     
  8. ellejay

    ellejay Well-Known Member

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    Have a look at Kiva. I give to them rather than the big charities
     
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  9. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    Isn’t that a loan not a gift?
     
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  10. Terry_w

    Terry_w Well-Known Member Business Member

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    Give direct
     
  11. ellejay

    ellejay Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but you can just keep circulating the money
     
  12. SatayKing

    SatayKing Well-Known Member

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    It is still all about ME!
    Yeah, difficult. For those charities on my preferred list, I tend to read the annual reports in an attempt to ascertain how much of the funds are expended on fundraising activities and administrative expenses. Some obviously are large organisations so I do expect there will be costs involved. For the ones I look at those costs are around the 5% mark.

    At this time of year I tend towards those involved in assisting people who endure the impact of domestic violence plus homelessness and mental health as the three issues are closely intertwined.
     
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  13. Rolf Latham

    Rolf Latham Inciteful (sic) Staff Member Business Plus Member

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    registered charities are required lodge audited books.

    Search the ACNC Charity Register | Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission

    I get to see a lot of tax returns with large taxable incomes, and weeny or nil charitable deductible donations.

    While this doesnt mean that people arent generous towards charities, since they may provide donations or work in kind that isnt deductible per se, I have found that the more money people gross and the bigger the A&L, the less % of donations there are.

    There are "logical" reasons why people from Chatswood for example, have perceptions of less disposable income than those from Blacktown.

    Having done volunteer work for organisations like the RSPCA, World Vision and others, both on the ground and as a volunteer sponsorship salesperson, I found some interesting demographic, cultural and religious trends towards charity.

    ta
    rolf
     
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  14. hammer

    hammer Well-Known Member

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    You can get around all of this by donating your time too.

    Man an opportunity shop, bake Christmas puddings, meals on wheels, Australian volunteers, salvos, orange sky......
     
  15. Shogun

    Shogun Well-Known Member

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    I own a pedigree cat. I feel guilty for not re-homing a cat. I now give money/food/goods regularly to animal shelters.
     
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  16. Mac Fields

    Mac Fields Well-Known Member

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    Like it. A few years ago my BIL did this and handed out envelopes from the charity he donated to on behalf of the family. It wasn't received as well as I think he anticipated. Reflecting on it, it is possibly because a. this was the first time someone in the family did it on behalf of others and b. he chose a charity on bahalf of others. There were comments like how about charity x, or y, I like charity z etc. I think your idea of discussing it with the family and making everyone part of the decision will enhance ownership of the idea and make them feel part of the process (maybe asking for them to name a charity for you to donate to on their behalf?). Great idea.

    I remember this came up a few years ago. It can be difficult if/when this is highlighted as it tars all with the same brush.

    Thanks! Didn't know this.

    Yep, agree, I like this at a global level (or MicroPlace which is slightly different, but the same...).

    I have several sub-accounts for various expenses etc (so I don't think transferring the funds after each pay), one of which is donations. I make the donations just before the end of each FY.
     
    Last edited: 23rd Dec, 2018
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  17. wylie

    wylie Moderator Staff Member

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    I used to get regular calls from an animal charity I've donated to regularly. I was asked to buy raffle tickets. One day I asked if I could just donate money instead of buying a ticket. The man said no, and was not happy that I wanted to go "off script". Clearly he wasn't able to take a direct donation, and he wasn't gracious about it at all.

    I know a lady in that organisation and asked her how best to help them directly. She advised me to donate blankets, and food, which I could drop directly to them (local to me).

    And the various charities I've donated to send me packs in the mail constantly. It annoys me because I'll donate when I want to, and I see these mailed incentives (pens, cards etc) as a complete waste of money. I guess they get a certain percentage strike rate, but I'd prefer not be bothered so regularly, and guilted into giving in return for the wasted money they've spent on the mail out.

    I found this just now...

    How to donate to charity effectively

    We've always been keen op shoppers and donate regularly to a local charity that doesn't have a large organisation behind it.
     
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  18. Mac Fields

    Mac Fields Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I received a lot of mail from two charities after we donated to them. I like donating directly. When I worked in the US many years ago, there was a lot of marketing material in the mail (retailers and charities). Someone told me that as long as they have 10% of the recipients take up the offer, they come out in front. When I received so much mail from the charities, I wondered how my donations were being used, but remembering that they need such a low return rate from the mass mailings, they will keep trying.
     
  19. Terry_w

    Terry_w Well-Known Member Business Member

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  20. Joynz

    Joynz Well-Known Member

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    I like this quote from the linked article:

    Is it a better charity if a bigger cut goes to the needy?
    Not necessarily, and it's really not feasible to compare administrative versus service costs between charities because each measures such expenditures in different ways. Uniform standards have long been lacking in this area.

    As the ACNC says:

    "The main problem with using administrative costs to inform decisions about which charities to support is that the information is an unreliable indicator of the extent to which actual donations make a difference in the community.Some charities make a real difference in the community and have relatively high administration costs, and some charities may be less effective but have low administration costs."

    Some urban-based charities may pay higher rent for their headquarters, for instance, and some may spend more money than others on measuring the impact of their work, leading to better outcomes for recipients.