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It's the time of year for giving again. My wife and I have always tried to be generous and give as much as we can afford to those less fortunate than us. In the past we have given to Salvation Army, Toys for Tots, Red Cross, Crosslines, Local food banks, clothing drives and etc. Now that the economy doesn't seem to be getting any better there seems to be even more need for charity and a greater dependency on begging.

One night this week we received 3 phone calls for organizations we have never contributed to, seeking donations for the needy. I had to say no. It breaks our hearts but if we are to continue to help the organizations we already help at the level we have given in the past we cannot add anymore.

I wonder if our contributions are enabling those in need to keep seeking handouts? Maybe instead of giving to charity we should all take our money and purchase the things we want. This in theory would create jobs to manufacture more things which in turn would create even more jobs. (Kind of a selfish attitude isn't it?)

I just wish there was an easy answer.
 

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It's the time of year for giving again. My wife and I have always tried to be generous and give as much as we can afford to those less fortunate than us. In the past we have given to Salvation Army, Toys for Tots, Red Cross, Crosslines, Local food banks, clothing drives and etc. Now that the economy doesn't seem to be getting any better there seems to be even more need for charity and a greater dependency on begging.

One night this week we received 3 phone calls for organizations we have never contributed to, seeking donations for the needy. I had to say no. It breaks our hearts but if we are to continue to help the organizations we already help at the level we have given in the past we cannot add anymore.

I wonder if our contributions are enabling those in need to keep seeking handouts? Maybe instead of giving to charity we should all take our money and purchase the things we want. This in theory would create jobs to manufacture more things which in turn would create even more jobs. (Kind of a selfish attitude isn't it?)

I just wish there was an easy answer.
Thats a good spin on a very old problem. I wish your idea would work, but knowing human nature, some people will always be dependent, some people will always take advantage of others, and some people, like us will always be as charitable as possible. For example, this past Thanksgiving my local church cooked and distributed 4 thousand complete turkey dinners.
Keep on being good hearted, it will never hurt.
Bry :patriot:
 

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Certified Biotch!
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We have a childrens home here, They have roughly 10-16 kids that lives there 24-7...it's kind of a last resort for these kids, most have been through foster home after foster home, or just for some reason can't be placed into foster care yet...I always buy toy's and take to them... we are allowed to bring the toys there and actually watch the kids open them and if you get on the list and get approved in time they will allow you to bring 1 child home with you on christmas day,of course with a limit on what you can provide them with..only other place I give to anymore is Toy's for Tot's...the rest of these organizations I used to donate to, but don't anymore...for the simple reason I know people here who get money and gifts for their kids around the holidays and then go out and jump in their new convertible car and take the free food and x-mas gifts home...:nono:
 

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You and your wife are very generous. Please don't beat yourselves up about not being able to help the organizations that called. Some of these are worthy causes, but even regarding those that represent legitimate charities, I have found most are money makers for the businesses that solicit your donations.

My standard question to those calling asking for help is to inquire what percentage of my donation actually go to the charity. Sometimes it's as little as 15%. That means the solicitors keep 85%!!!
 

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First thing is NEVER give to any charity that solicits by phone. There are plenty of worthy and reputable charities out there and judging by your post you seem to be familiar with them. Send what you can when you can.
I've learned the hard way that when being solicited by phone ...it's usually a scam.
 

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The Wanderer
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I set up annual food drives and put up boxes for toys for tot's. I donate whatever it is that the orginization is looking for, I do not give cash. I figure that it has a better chance of helping people that way.
 

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I do like Marty, I never give cash. We do give vouchers for food and clthing that are stamped no alcohol, perscription or tabbacco products. There's the greedy scammers out there but it's impossibe to stop without an internet of linked computers to flag the crooks. They won't allow us to use the childs SS# so it can't work. I believe more goog is done and karma will equal the field somewhere.
 

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I worked with the Toys 4 Tots program and the first year they had teamed up with the Salvation Army was disgusting. Not trying to bad mouth the groups...it wasn't them, the system has problems. People driving up in new Lexus sport utes, sports cars, and vehicles that I couldn't afford unless I saved my paychecks and ignored my other bills. I still give to T4T as well as the SA but our current system does enable those that want to abuse it and not just during the holidays but year round.
 

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My sisters, wife and I quit swapping gifts several years ago at Christmas and instead pool our money to help ones that need it. One year, I select the recipient of our help, next year, one of the sisters and following year the other and so on. Wife and I also help neighbors almost daily that are in more need than us. We don't have a lot ourselves, but do share what we can. Elvis Presely used to say in one of his songs, "Why can't everyday be like Christmas", meaning for everybody to help the needy as we do at Christmas time. Thank all of you for giving. Wishing all my best.
 

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I worked with the Toys 4 Tots program and the first year they had teamed up with the Salvation Army was disgusting. Not trying to bad mouth the groups...it wasn't them, the system has problems. People driving up in new Lexus sport utes, sports cars, and vehicles that I couldn't afford unless I saved my paychecks and ignored my other bills. I still give to T4T as well as the SA but our current system does enable those that want to abuse it and not just during the holidays but year round.
I had the same thing happen quite a few times with the big car thing, I felt like you. The only thing I hoped for was that the cars were bought before they lost their jobs or something. I look at all the big expensive houses in forecloser and can see were those who had a great income have fallen on hard times too. I do know the numbers climbed steadly every year that I was doing toys. I am also sure some were double and triple dipping by signing up anywhere they could. Since we can't check out every name we can only hope that the percentage of cheaters is fairly low overall. We'll always have those that find a way to abuse any system. Some of the greatest abusers are the heads of some charties.
 

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Don't let second thoughts and a few bad apples dampen your spirit of generosity.
Give to organisations that you know the money goes directly to those who need help.
Local food banks are a good start imo becuase in our society, no one deserves to go hungry.

Don't forget the other component of charity; time.
If people gave more of their TIME and some of their money, every charity would be better off as well.
 

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It's the time of year for giving again. My wife and I have always tried to be generous and give as much as we can afford to those less fortunate than us. In the past we have given to Salvation Army, Toys for Tots, Red Cross, Crosslines, Local food banks, clothing drives and etc. Now that the economy doesn't seem to be getting any better there seems to be even more need for charity and a greater dependency on begging.

One night this week we received 3 phone calls for organizations we have never contributed to, seeking donations for the needy. I had to say no. It breaks our hearts but if we are to continue to help the organizations we already help at the level we have given in the past we cannot add anymore.

I wonder if our contributions are enabling those in need to keep seeking handouts? Maybe instead of giving to charity we should all take our money and purchase the things we want. This in theory would create jobs to manufacture more things which in turn would create even more jobs. (Kind of a selfish attitude isn't it?)

I just wish there was an easy answer.
Private charities usually screen their clients very well, and usually are very good at keeping it from being a vehicle of perpetual dependence for said client. As stated by others, avoid the charities that solicit by phone, cold calling you. Unless I have a previous relationship with a specific charity, the answer is always no thanks...too often there is a "clearing house" attached that skims off as much as 95% of the donations. Some otherwise reputable charities use these "clearing houses" as it gives them 5% they would not have normally gotten, but I would rather my money be used effectively, and wholly, for the charity I support.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Bikers in our area are very generous and thoughtful. I see by reading your coments you guys are too. My wishes are that each of you have a very happy holiday season and that this country's economy will get better so that the people who truly need help may prosper.
 
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