The first principle of Eliminate The Muda is invest in yourself. Only by gaining knowledge and then using it can we learn to improve our lives, be more efficient, manage our money better and waste less.
Today I had another one of those calls from a fund raiser. The polite young man immediately and graciously thanked me for my previous contribution (which I never made) to his organization. He then began the spiel…
Before he got too far I interrupted him and asked, “Do you work for this charitable organization or are you a vendor that just collects money for them”
Following the law, he admitted that his company simply manages the “entire collection process” for said charity.
I then inquired, “out of every dollar, how much actually goes to the recipients?”
He was proud to claim that a “full .67 cents out of every dollar goes to helping build shelters, provide food…. “
I interrupted again to ask, out of the .67 cents how much actually goes to those that need it and how much actually goes to management of that charity?
This was a question that he could not answer. hmmm, don’t you think this would be a question they would be prepared for?
At this point, with a big grin on my face I pointed out that if I just sent a check directly to the charity in question at least 33% more money would be available to help the needy.
“Sorry boss but there is little chance I will ever give any of my money to charity organization/vendor that will waste so much of it.”
I wish I could recall what blog or post I learned that these telemarketers for charities were obligated to disclose their fee structure when asked. It would be nice to give credit where credit is due. Either way I know this year that a lot more of my monetary donation will be put to the use it is intended for as a result.
If you are going to donate money to an organization, please take the time to make sure that the money is being well spent. Look up the charity with one of the organizations that tracks and report their effectiveness. Here are few sources that may help you make better donation decisions:
Who do you donate your money, merchandise or time to?
photo by Daquella manera