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that if you want to go somewhere exotic for charity you should pay for it yourself?

(61 Posts)
Madmum24 Thu 22-Aug-13 22:29:27

A Family member is doing a very long trek in the Far East for charity; brilliant, a commendable act, I would sponsor generously. However, she has announced that in order to do the trek she must first raise £3500 to cover travel expenses, accommodation and fees etc. She is hosting lots of pub quizzes/jumble sales/raffles etc in the name of her charity, which I feel is a bit dishonest, as it is going towards her fees, not the charity IYKWIM.

After she raises the fees she will then expect sponsorship. AIBU to feel that not only is this slightly deceptive, but that if she really wants to help the charity she will pay for it herself and use all of the fundraising money for the charity directly?

Pawprint Sat 24-Aug-13 17:18:34

I did my trek in memory of a very close member of my family. The charity spent about £1000 on my flights and accommodation but I raised £3,500 for them in sponsorship etc. I certainly wouldn't have expected family/friends to contribute to cost of flights etc.

Most of the time, you have to spend some money in order to raise money.

I didn't

Madmum24 Sat 24-Aug-13 11:34:56

Horry in my families case people seem to think that paying towards the cost of the holiday trek that they are helping the charity. I seem to be the only one questioning the morality of spending £3500 to hand £1000 over to the charity.

But then again I am not the one who will get to FB/twitter every mile along the way and need to be looked after for two weeks after so perhaps I am just jealous?

For me it's a percentage return thing - a coffee morning with overheads (charged or donated) of say £50-60 needs to raise at least £100 as far as I'm concerned. The most successful I've been involved with was an organised online event where people said "let's see how much we can raise today" and the ad hoc JustGiving was over £1000 in a few hours, with no overheads except the JG %age.

I guess it depends why the sponsors are sponsoring - because they like the charity? because they like the fundraiser? because they are getting a product/service they value? because they can't get out of it? Only in the last case can major overheads be justified (because otherwise the charity would get £0) but it is morally questionable.

mrsjay Fri 23-Aug-13 17:07:14

I can see why people go to charity nights Im not talking about the big money spinner ones but a disco or something it does get the charity good money all at once not all charities are the ones people will set up Direct debit for, somebody wanted to trek to see the gorrillas and raise money for a facebookpage i like I want to go and see the gorrillas Im not paying for somebody else to go <humph>

GrimmaTheNome Fri 23-Aug-13 16:58:21

Sponsored swims, silences or whatever are great - if done by children. Apart from that, I much prefer to just give to a cause on its merits - and with regard to how much it spends on admin, executives' salaries etc - and set up standing orders.

GemmaTeller Fri 23-Aug-13 16:55:16

Everyone in the office was shock when I refused to sponsor someone from another office who was doing one of these holidays by saying 'sorry, I haven't had a holiday for five years, I'm not paying towards somebody elses'.

Lweji Fri 23-Aug-13 16:48:08

TBH, I still don't fully get the sponsored treks, rides, challenges, whatever.

Why can't people just go to other people, tell them about the charity and raise the money anyway?
Why can't they spend the time they would be trekking or riding, for example, with the charity?
The same goes for fund raising dinners and parties, although I can understand that it may well save time and reach out narcissistic givers.

I'm just as likely (probably more, actually) to give to a friend who asks me to give to any given charity than to sponsor a money raising activity.

I'm probably wrong and charities do raise more money that way, or people are more likely to make the effort to raise that money.
It just feels odd.

mrsjay Fri 23-Aug-13 16:43:53

I think this has been a unanimous YANBU not seen one of those for ages,

got a local free paper in the door last year local girl wants to go picture of a girl just left school at the summer wants to go to africa to build huts all she needs is sponsorship , sigh

GrimmaTheNome Fri 23-Aug-13 16:33:56

Oh, and the other thing - it makes no practical difference whether the travel costs are raised directly by the 'sponsorship' or provided by the charity. In the latter case it's money that the charity isn't spending on its cause.

GrimmaTheNome Fri 23-Aug-13 16:31:17

I reckon that the only reason these exotic 'challenges' raise (and then squander) lots of money compared with other methods is just that the people trying to raise the money are motivated to be more obnoxious pushy determined to raise the money. Not that the donors inherently prefer to give to this sort of thing.

Still18atheart Fri 23-Aug-13 16:27:48

YADNBU This is one of the things I would put in Room 101

It really winds me up, it's just a fancy way of saying I want to go to a dream destination but i can't afford it. I know I'll do some sort of challenge out there which i can raise money for charity with and then my friends will sponser me to go.

TooWetToWoo Fri 23-Aug-13 16:20:33

YANBU I think this goes for all types of charity events. If you want to do it then you should front the costs yourself, it is very dishonest to trick people into thinking they are helping a charity by donating when in reality they are paying for your experience.

mignonette Fri 23-Aug-13 15:59:11

Our local paper is always full of these holidaymakers (for that is what they are). The latest wanted more £££ for a Peruvian 'charity' trek and talked about her last jaunt where she raised a grand total of £400 for cycling around Cuba. She fund raised a further £2000 to pay for it- something badly wrong there.

Pawprint Fri 23-Aug-13 15:57:47

Oh - to answer the OP's question, yes, I do think it is off for the trekking lady to expect others to fund her travelling expenses. As I said before, the organisers paid for the flights etc. Our accommodation was very, very basic and we shared rooms. Meals were also basic.

The most expensive part was the flights, paid for by the charity.

I paid for all my trekking equipment, travel expenses to and from the airport, passport, visa, injections etc.

Pawprint Fri 23-Aug-13 15:53:33

I did a similar trek and had to raise that amount of money in sponsorship. Apart from that, the flights, accommodation and most of the meals were funded by the organisers.

Between 30 of us, however, we managed to raise over £100,000 for a childhood illness related charity.

Some people do self fund but most people just raise the sponsorship. Raising the money is hard work and the trek is also very challenging but it was for a great cause.

I am not going to pretend it wasn't a treat to go, but I did put the effort into it!

DidoTheDodo Fri 23-Aug-13 15:44:21

As a charity worker I am quite shocked at some of these stories, especially the motorbike, I-pod and paying off the overdraft.

The charity I work for does not endorse this sort of fundraising, for the reasons many of you have outlined, but occasionally we get someone who does one for us anyway. We are always very grateful for the donations we receive.

cushtie335 Fri 23-Aug-13 15:33:49

I don't get this either, my DCs school do this in 6th year, usually to China or places in South America. If you were that bothered about building schools in Belize or whatever, just raise the money and hand it over!

WafflyVersatile Fri 23-Aug-13 13:29:12

To be clear, I do think it's dishonest to get money to cover the cost this way if it is not going to the charity.

Unless your relative has realistic prospects of raising well in excess of £3.5k during the trek, I can't see why the charity wouldn't be better served by her raising £3.5k through an event HERE, and handing it straight over.

This scenario smacks of people I know who ask friends and family to all give their kids TWO Xmas presents - "one from YOU, and one from SANTA." hmm

GrimmaTheNome Fri 23-Aug-13 13:17:24

SelectA has it about right.

I've got a corker of an example of abuse...

DH once had one of his company's directors come round demanding asking everyone for 'sponsorship'. The event was a motorbike ride somewhere exotic. The 'sponsorship' was largely to buy the bike - which the bloke then would get to keep. None of the employees felt able to refuse but this was clearly piss-taking of the highest level - this was a guy who by being in the right place at the right time had made millions in stock options. He simply didn't need subbing to buy the bike. (One of the other directors, we're pretty sure but he wouldn't dream of saying, simply gave a shedload of money to local health charities, and he now gives time and expertise.)

>Much as we would like to think that as much money would be raised if she did something at home, it won't be

I don't believe that. I know people who raise loads doing long distance bike rides. Using their own bikes and their own muscle power, with minimal transport costs.

mrsjay Fri 23-Aug-13 13:12:15

I was invited to a charity do to raise money to pay for a team of people to go to china to walk for something that was before any sponsorship I didnt go, maybe they should do something smaller and local, for the chosen charity exotic charity things should be paid for by the charity or the people doing it

Egusta Fri 23-Aug-13 13:07:30

I should add though that there are a number of charities i support directly (foodbank, various wildlife trusts etc) and i worked in the charity sector for years. I prefer the direct approach, not funding someone's holiday.

paperclipsarebetterthanstaples Fri 23-Aug-13 13:03:50

Yanbu! I did a charity trek a few years ago - went without a holiday for 3 years (pre dc) to pay for it and only accepted 'sponsor' money for the actual charity.

There was about 40 of us on the trip - about half had paid for themselves and half had fund raised - not paying for it myself didn't cross my mind and certainly wouldn't have sat well with me.

It was AMAZING though and definitely worth the money.

Egusta Fri 23-Aug-13 13:03:28

I never contribute to these things anymore, since being burned a few years back. The son of a (former) friend was raising money to do a charity bike ride in aid of something or other and needed help raising the costs of his flights etc. i donated (Under considerable pressure) £100 and the kid lost interest and never did it.

None of us saw our money again and i heard the mother say airily a little while later that at least her son 'was able to pay off his overdraft'.

That is not the only reason why she is a former friend, but it did not help.

I sort of agree with Wonderstuff and Waffly. The charities won't get as much out of a car washing weekend at home for example as they do from somebody raising a lot of money to trek across the Andes or whatever. People won't cough up that much. Much as we would like to think that as much money would be raised if she did something at home, it won't be.

And I also don't begrudge the individual getting a trip out it if they raise so much money, it is a win-win situation.

But, and it is a big but, she should be honest about where the money donated is going. If it is going towards her travel costs then she should say so. People might be happy to help her meet her target but they shouldn't be duped into paying for her trip if they aren't aware of how exactly she is being funded. I also wouldn't be very happy if the total amount she had to raise meant that less than half was going to the charity so £3,500 costs and only £1,000 as a minimum sponsorship doesn't stack up to me.

I also agree I would personally prefer to pay travel costs for somebody who was going to go and do the charity work rather than have an exciting trip but I still see the point of these big charity events as being useful for raising large sums of money by people who don't have a month or a year and the necessary skills to spend helping out themselves.

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