Friday, December 05, 2008

Am I Depressed?

Or just disheartened?

I have supported various charities over the years. Some I support regularly, and some I support as part of a larger fundraising event. Since I can't afford to give generously to every charity that I like, I give a little bit to some and more to others and leave it at that.

For instance, I have participated in the Yarn Harlot's Doctors Without Borders challenges. Since then, they have sent me a letter in the mail at least once a month and have taken up calling me to ask me for more donations. I am sure they have spent the entire original donation I sent them trying to get another couple of dollars out of me.

When my friend married her partner, the cancer survivor, they asked for donations to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. They haven't used up my donation looking for the follow-up yet, but they're working on it.

Clearly, I need to stop giving the smaller donations. I really don't want to. I want to be able to give a one-time donation to a worthy organization and not hear from then for maybe a year. I don't mind them reminding me of their existence, but they come up with these campaigns. "Don't you care about X? We're working on that right now. Couldn't you give us a donation toward that? You do realize that the world will end if we can't get enough people to chip in on this, don't you?"

And don't get me started on the fake surveys. Or the "Will you send a letter to all of your neighbors? We'll mail you a kit and you can just mail the letters to your neighbors, collect the money and mail it back to us." Or the ones who call or write to people who haven't lived at this address for over fifteen years and get all huffy when I point out that they've wasted perfectly good money on a worthless list. Or the ones that send out a "gift" of a cross or an angel or return address labels or holiday cards in advance thanks for your generous donation.

I work for a not-for-profit. And we're not really good at raising money. We don't contact our donors every single month by mail and phone with some new emergency they just have to cough up some money to support. We do hold occasional events to raise funds. I think we could do better if we joined the rest of the charity world and pestered people more often, but I'm really glad that we don't.

So, am I depressed or just disheartened?

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Blogger melissaknits said...

Disillusioned. As am I. I have even specifically asked charities we give to regularly to NOT contact me. I don't need to be "reminded" and I don't need a mug, t-shirt, calendar, or address labels. Really. And the monthly letters? Insane. Put the money into some nice project. that's what I gave it to you for, not to send me mountains of mail. And a phone cal gets you off my donation list for good and all.
You've totally touched on one of my pet peeves here!!

December 05, 2008 3:25 PM  

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