Expensive donations

May 16, 2011 Trends and Society

An article recently published in the Edmonton Sun draws attention to the uncomfortable question commonly faced by charities -when is it okay to say “no, thank you” to a donation? With constant scrutiny charities are held to a very high standard of graciousness. What many donors don’t realize is their donations are not always helpful. Edmonton’s Good Will spent $257,000 on garbage fees last year for donations that were unusable.

2011-12-21: Here’s a recent article with a similar story found here.

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  6. One of my biggest challenges when working with a charity has been dealing with the occasional tight fisted gift. Without sounding ungrateful the idea that charities should be happy with what they get usually ends in a lot of wasted time an resource to ensure the donor feels properly ‘stewarded’, instead of of money going to the mission. At any charity event the participant has the opportunity to ‘donate back’ the prize they earn for achieving an incremental level in fundraising, however most don’t. A lot of fundraising is done on behalf of donors to earn a t-shirt. While you may be thinking it’s an insignificant cost, the concern raised by Good Will brings to light a significant expenditure. Donations are meant to be a helpful gift, not a garbage service.

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