Why I'm quitting charity. - Baby Steps in High Heels

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Why I'm quitting charity.

Every year at Christmas, I donate to various charities in honor or memory of many my family members. I try to select organizations that have special meaning to each and every one of them. Then, these donations become part of their Christmas gifts.

It’s a really nice thing to do, I think. Especially for people like parents, grandparents, etc. who really don’t need another tchotchke to put on their shelf next to the whatever-I-made-for-them-in-third-grade-art-class twenty years ago (and everything I’ve given them since).

Sooooo. Along came the charity donation idea, and it’s fantastic.

Except for one teeeeny, tiiiiny, little problem.

My once a year donation isn’t enough. They want more. The military organization mails me letters, almost on a weekly basis. (Here’s a thought: add up that postage and donate it back to yourself instead of my trashcan).

The cancer organization … well, they unleashed every single one of their regional branches on my phone number and email address. And they call. All. Year. Long.

And don’t get me started on the city-county-state law enforcement groups that may or may not be a scam and you never know if they’re secretly stealing your social security number or adding you to the blacklist of people who they’ll most definitely ticket next time they come across you on the highway. (longest sentence ever?)

It’s not that I don’t want to give more. I’d love to. But, I’m just your average person. With an average income. And I simply cannot afford to give more to every single organization that calls.

My solution? I’m quitting.

Well, maybe not entirely. But I will no longer give to multiple charities. I am attempting to select one organization that generally has a place in everyone’s heart. I will make one big donation in honor of everyone.

On that note (and in honor of this blog post with super long run-on sentences), I just need to find a Cancer-Military-Heart-Diabetes-Starving-Orphans-Plant-a-Tree-Catholic charity that will buy a goat to feed a village that will ultimately be cured of their diabetic heart cancer and be saved from the ravages of war.

Any suggestions?

[Note: There are lots of fantastic charitable organizations out there. For my personal life right now, I just need to reduce the number of them that cause my phone to ring on a nightly basis …. Juuust as Baby is falling asleep.]


  1. I'm totally with you on that one, and the do not call lists don't apply to non-profit orgs so they can keep calling and so on. And don't get me started on how many are scams. They change one name of their organization to resemble a well respected charity to try and fool you into thinking it's the same one, when it's really a scam. Ugh.

  2. I totally know how you feel! Every cancer society has sent me however many stickers to last me probably another year (ya know the address labels). I think it would be cool if you looked around locally and could find a charity in your area, that maybe helps people in your own area. Like in WY they have a reading program (I can't think of the name of it...it's on the back of one of Marlee's books) and they buy books, to give to each child at their check ups. It's pretty cool. I am sure you can find something else if they don't have something like that in your area..but you get the idea. Then they probably aren't going to be selling your info, or possibly not even calling you for more donations (at least not on a monthly basis). :) Hope that helps! :)

  3. I think you should send this post out to some of those organizations. Maybe they will get a clue??

  4. I don't dontate to an organization instead I adopt nursing home residents. I work for a company that manages nursing homes and each Christmas for the last 10 years, I've adopted one or more residents. We typically pick homes that are in indegent areas and ask that the residents make "wish lists". The lits are fun and simple. Last year, one of my residents wanted a Raggedy Ann doll, and another simply wanted pink lipstick :) On the date of the facility party, we deliver the gifts. It is so amazing, I love it! I was actually planning on reaching out to family and friends next year asking that they join me by donating even just $1. It truly makes such an impact on their lives. So many of them do not have family memebers who visit them so they look forward to our visits.

  5. I understand 100%! I don't understand all the letters I get, or the here we'll send you envelope labels...well how much does all that ink cost you, paper, envelopes, labels, and postage? It costs a lot...I know because I myself have to send out mailings at work and I know how much the supplies cost. A huge chunk could stay right there with them!

  6. I get overwhelmed by all the organizations I'm asked to donate to. Just running a few errands the other day, I was asked to donate 5 different times. Um, I was only running errands for an hour and a half.

  7. Check out saveone(dot)net! Thankfully the organizations I donate to haven't been pestering me but I know I would feel exactly the same way!