Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Ribbons wearing thin

At the risk of sounding uncharitable, I’m becoming increasingly irritated by the constant demands of charity.

It might just be me, but the ribbons, red noses and other trappings of fund raising tricks seem to be reaching tsunami proportions.

Add to that the phone canvassing and street touts and the charity sector is becoming more demanding than the consumer marketing sectors.

No doubt most if not all are truly worthy causes, and I don't feel all that great politely saying no, but no is now invariably the response.

What really adds insult to injury, with a sort of election campaign on here, is that we rarely see a politician or aspiring politician not sporting a ribbon or other charity symbol.

Therein lies the great hypocrisy; in a country with a booming economy, awash with surplus cash, governments staunchly refuse to use OUR money to fund essential social services.

Research charities are increasingly forced to use their poor resources to try and find ways to drive charity funding; essential community services are forced to rely on volunteers to deliver their services.

In the process ‘corporatised’ service deliverers are trimming services to maximize profits, putting pressure back on the not for profits.

I’m going to find out more about these dynamics in coming weeks, as I take on a project with a local not for profit umbrella outfit. Part of my task will be framing the arguments to squeeze much needed dollars out of various levels of government.

I guess in one way my current feelings about demanding charities can be put to some positive use. It is not the causes I’m opposed to, merely where the bulk of funding comes from.


Anonymous said...

I find that I get worn down by so many calls for help; so many pleas; from so many charities. I make my contributions, and then feel crappy about all the others I can't contribute to.

abi said...

Our money? That's were you've gone wrong. Government bureaucrats think of it as their money.

Good luck putting the squeeze on govt for your non-profit.

Cartledge said...

So there is a difference between east and west cost...