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November 4, 2007

Giving $$$

Charity organizations are back online after the charity sagas, and getting more aggressive than ever. Instead of having cans where u drop coins as you wish, they’re demanding you donate $10 or more for some freebie. Some even spending minutes to coerce you into giving. To authenticate themselves they even show their IC and apply for certificates.

Shouldn’t charity be about giving whatever amount you wish to?

Furthermore, I personally feel like giving money is a bad form of donation (if not the worst). I agree that not all people have the time/energy to actually perform charitable work, but when you put in cash, you don’t know how your money is actually being used. How much of it will end up in the director’s pocket or a gold tap in his office? Why not donate relevant items such as rice for disaster aid, or milk powder for poor kids? Even if you had used your money to buy the items to give, it’ll be less likely the organization will resell off those items in exchange for cash, and more likely it’ll fulfil its intended use.

I have also heard about petroleum companies in poor but oil-rich countries who are doing their part by donating to local villages. What happened was the village chiefs ended up with very nice houses, while the villagers were still as poor. If actual aid items were given out, I bet the chief will not stock up as much and more will reach the ground.

That said, I’ll still give 10 or 20cents to people who approach me sincerely for petty donations, but I’ll think thrice for salesman style appeals for cash.

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