Try doing something to help those far, far less fortunate.
As Canadians, we find ourselves on the horns of a dilemma.
We know we want to help all the women, men and children suffering in the horrendous food crisis in Africa. We want to help because they are all (all!) starving, while we bloggers are well fed.
We want to donate, but to which charity? and what will that charity do with our money?
How do we know which of those will best use our donation?
Therein lies the rub, as the ubiquitous "they" used to say. Do those charities, the ones we most admire, use our donations wisely or are they perhaps using our money to overpay money-hungry executives?
To explain...yesterday I stumbled upon a website (a motorcycle website, so you know I had to have stumbled upon it). The author was discussing well-known charities and how their funds (our funds) are being dispersed.
So, let’s look at this author's numbers and, for purposes of this discussion only, assume his numbers are somewhat close to today’s truth...
Motorcyle Blogger didn’t pretend to be any kind of expert on the subject, but he says the worst offender in money distribution is UNICEF! Imagine!
His blog states that only 14 cents, out of every dollar donated, will go to those in need, while the rest of the money (donors' money) is making millionaires of the charity’s top executives.
According to him (and, again, I cannot verify the numbers) the second worst offender is the American Red Cross, with only 39 cents out of every dollar going to charity. The Red Cross. The holy grail of charities. Less than half of the money donated. (I don't what it is in Canada, probably close.)
Next, the religion-based, do-good United Way wisely pays its president only $375,000, not to mention many expense benefits. Somehow, however, only 30 cents of the United Way’s dollar reaches people in crisis.
Fourth on the list of big spenders is the president of World Vision (Canada) who receives a home with all expenses paid, maid service, pool maintenance, private schools for his children...the list goes on, leaving about 52 cents of every dollar available for charitable causes. Well, that's not too bad...a little more than half, but...
Finally, the author of the motorcycle website identifies an organization using 93 cents out of every dollar for charity. Yes, almost a whole dollar “goes back out to local charity causes” if you donate to the Salvation Army.
Gotta love the Sally Ann. No denying that, drums and tubas and all.
However, dear Sally, local charity causes, as much as they do need the money, cannot solve the burning question now, in March, 2017... how best to feed Africa's starving children, many of them infants, plus their families, without any executives receiving absurd amounts of our money?
We’ve all seen those children on TV, absolutely skeletal from lack of food, many of them dying every hour, and their parents are in worse shape because they feed the children what little they manage to scrounge and eat little or nothing themselves.
When photos of starving children are shown on our televisions, do we change the channel? Do we go to the kitchen for coffee or maybe a stiffer drink to numb our charitable instincts?
What do we do?
Younger Canadians can probably go to Africa, and perhaps even should, just as North American youths went to Israel to work in kibbutzes in the 60s, but where to go, exactly? What to do there? How to help millions of people? Young people with hearts and minds full of goodwill don't know how to do it.
|Syria, across the Red Sea from Africa|
...years of war, years of starvation
Senior citizens cannot simply don a backpack and go to Africa in person, so that lets me, most of my friends, and several of my relatives out of the long trek.
Plus...here in Canada, as in Europe, we have accepted Syrian refugees, and have taken on a responsibility. Try as we might, we can’t teach English to Syrians if we are in Africa helping to stem the tide of starvation.
What to do? What to do?
Do we weep and wring our hands at our helplessness? Do we ignore the cost of a charity's religious recruiting? Or do we embrace it because 52 cents per dollar is more than the other guys?
Or do we try to find a way to send help, that 90-cents-out-of-every-dollar kind of help, right now, today?
I don’t know, but I’m putting this out there for all the world to see, because my fellow bloggers are good people, I know they are.
(Many thanks to http://cruiser.mototribe.com/ for that thought-provoking post, and for the cost comparisons. I don’t know when it was written, or even how much of it is true today, but I do know a good person when I see his writing.)
Linking with Lady Fi's popular meme Our World Tuesday