To confess I don't donate to charity

(130 Posts)
VAVAV00M Tue 19-Mar-13 02:32:18

Not because I'm evil, I just don't trust them.

The only 'charitable' things I do is donate to church, I'm brownie group leader, help out at the local stables and students who need very hard to get but needed work experience for my line if work.

Am I going to hell?

I've just been made to feel guilty by not donating to RND by peers.

I honestly won't donate until they have a list on the website showing every penny spent and where it ha gone.

CottenRunt Tue 19-Mar-13 02:32:56

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AdoraBell Tue 19-Mar-13 02:35:26

YANBU if it's because you don't trust them, have you explained that to these peers? It's no-one else's business of course, but sometimes it can help to have a reason handy.

DaleingtonModelActorEgo Tue 19-Mar-13 02:39:38

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You donate to church... I am sure God is using every penny you give to make life better for those in need. Other charities can't possibly be as honest as the church... And of course they don't offer eternal salvation as a free gift in return.

Bearandcub Tue 19-Mar-13 04:17:13

You donate time. Charity is about community support not just cash.

Sirzy Tue 19-Mar-13 04:50:51

Donating time is as important (if not more) as donating money.

wanderings Tue 19-Mar-13 07:19:54

Some of us would donate to charity, if we could afford it! It's not our fault that thanks to bankers and politicians, many of us are poorer than we were.

livinginwonderland Tue 19-Mar-13 07:21:10

i'm the same.

ArseAche Tue 19-Mar-13 07:22:08

It is your choice. I do donate, but only to certain charities which I know very well. Nothing wrong with not donating, especially as you give time. Just hope you never need to use the charity yourself, then you would feel guilty!

manicinsomniac Tue 19-Mar-13 07:31:36

I was going to say YABU but you give to church so you are actually giving some money. You're also giving your time. So, although I do think most causes are very worthy, I think YANBU.

RobinSparkles Tue 19-Mar-13 07:32:50

If you're going to hell then so am I. As I was taking the bins out last night there was an RSPCA charity guy walking up my drive (the ones that ask you to pay so much a month). After he had scared me half to death, he asked me how old I was (nosy so and so) as you have to be over 25. I told him that I didn't like animals shock which isn't true at all but it sent him on his way. I was just so annoyed that he had come into my space and a. Giving me a fright and b. asking for money. I know that he has to, it's his job, but if I could afford to be giving X a month then I would already be doing so! I give as much as I can to charity shops, clothes, toys and books etc.

I can't believe I told him I didn't like animals though!

RobinSparkles Tue 19-Mar-13 07:36:02

I'm not saying that I don't donate to charity, btw. I'll give what I can but I was just feeling guilty blush.

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 07:37:28

I ask how much their chief executive earns and if it is over minimum wage I don't donate.

Hence I don't donate.

littlecrocodile Tue 19-Mar-13 07:40:38

Entirely up to you if you want to donate or not. Worth mentioning though that most charities will publish their annual reports in full on their websites so you can see where the money is spent if you want to. Maybe not penny by penny, if that was done that'd divert plenty of that money, but most charities are pretty open and publish quite detailed information on finance and charitable spend.

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Mar-13 07:42:21

Its up to you what you do.
I give to certain charities and not others.
People should be able to give to the charities they want without people criticising them.
Ditto those that don't

The people that piss me off are the ones that moan and whinge about others giving to charity and the ones that spread misinformation in order to put others off.

Also the knobends who crawl out of the woodwork everytime there is a high profile charity drive and use it as a platform for their racist, dumbass rantings.

I don't donate for the same reason. Dp and I feel very strongly about it, especially as he worked as a charity phone man for a while. The first duc months were great, he's be calling to raise awareness of various big name charities, only calling those who had ' expressed an interest' in some form (checking boxes on forms and things to say that they wanted to know more). No money grabbing involved and he'd tell people who to call if they wanted to donate. But then they started getting contacts which involved coercing people out if their cash and he got in trouble for not sticking to the script when the person was obviously not in as position to donate more but were being guilt tripped into it.

That was when we became even more cynical and stopped donating to anything for the time being. When we have the cash we have decided to put money into kiva, and donate to a couple of local charities who don't use chuggers and who are very open as to where their money goes. I volunteer my time as a scout leader, have volunteered continuously since I was 16 for various charities and causes on a regular basis and to me, time is worth more than money.

ArseAche Tue 19-Mar-13 07:44:05

comfysofas - that is an excellent point.

Chandon Tue 19-Mar-13 07:44:20

I know wat you mean.

Always a bit shocked by what directors of charities earn.

Even by some of the local volunteers, in the charity shops, who openly grab the best bits for themselves to e-bay for a profit ( obvioisly most charity workers don't!)

wigglesrock Tue 19-Mar-13 07:45:37

No, it's up to you what you do with your money. In saying that smile I'd sooner give to a charity like Comic Relief than church based ones. I'm not really one for evangelism.

Shinyshoes1 Tue 19-Mar-13 07:54:43

I don't donate either .

I struggle to make my money last the month.

In this case charity does begin at home

CloudsAndTrees Tue 19-Mar-13 07:58:27

You should never feel guilty for not donating to comic relief. I donate loads in time and money to charity, but I can't stand comic relief.

I think if you never donate money when you could afford to, then that's a bit mean tbh, but if have thought that most people do donate somewhere, even if its just sponsoring friends, turning up at your schools PtA events or sticking a few coins in a collection box.

financialwizard Tue 19-Mar-13 08:00:43

We don't either, well not money. We have donated clothes, books and toys to the Sally Army but I wholeheartedly support them.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 08:01:22

Do people think directors of charities should work for free?

Do you grudge anyone drawing a wage out of a charity?

How then do you propose charities go about doing the work without employing people to do it?

BrokenBritain Tue 19-Mar-13 08:05:07

Omg you think someone should take full responsibility for all the legal, financial, staffing responsibilities etc on national minimum wage?? When there are people who serve coffee who earn more than that?
I dread to think who would end up running the charities...unless you think only independently rich people should be employed to run charities?
I agree the wages shouldn't be obscene but they should be proportionate to the level of responsibility.

BrokenBritain Tue 19-Mar-13 08:05:49

That was to confused and arse btw

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Mar-13 08:09:17

I have worked for lots of charities over the years.
I have never earned over the average wage and sometimes much less than the minimum (yeah, looking at you RSPCA)

There was a time in the 90s when all the bright young things would head straight from University into the charity sector. This could result in a hell of a lot of people who had no interest in the cause working high up in the agency. They would move around the sector and each move meant a higher wage.

I worked for a women only organisation in Camden. The director was the sort of woman who goes all wobbly and squeaky when in the presence of a man, disliked other women intensely and ha a pathological fear of children. So she resisted any attempts to arrange services for parents (about 90% of our users were single parents).

WTF was she doing in charge of a woman's organisation? hmm

Don't get me started on people who work in the disability field whose only experience is 'oh yes I knew a chap at school with one leg. Great bloke' hmm

But further down the pay scale are the real workers but they not generally valued and certainly not head hunted the way the CEO used to be.

MrsRajeshKoothrappali Tue 19-Mar-13 08:35:24

I used to donate when you were allowed to just chuck a few quid in a shakey tin.

Now that they badger me on my doorstep, refuse to take the odd fiver and insist on me signing up to a monthly amount I don't bother.

Knocking on doors and asking for money is rude, regardless of whether it's for charity or not.

Refusing to take my offer of a fiver because 'we can't take cash' is just hmm .

PlasticLentilWeaver Tue 19-Mar-13 08:44:20

I'd far rather give to a charity that supports causes that matter to me than to any form of organised religion, but each to their own.

And I certainly think it is unreasonable to expect any CEO of a large organisation, responsible for millions of pounds, to work for minimum wage. Sure salaries shouldn't be excessive, but minimum wage is just being daft.

cory Tue 19-Mar-13 08:45:03

I think the new type charity fundraisers have done a lot of damage to the image of charities. It used to be volunteers asking you nicely to support a charity because they felt for it. Now it is hectoring employees who get paid according to how much they get out of you, who have no particular interest in the charity, and who insist on following a set script regardless of how much they are upsetting the person at the other end.

I do give quite generously by direct debit to an assortment of charities but I am still hassled by their fundraisers who simply won't take no for an answer.

When I had lost my job and was struggling to pay for the needs of disabled dd, they used to reduce me to tears by ridiculing the idea that I couldn't raise my donations. It was pure bullying.

We've just had a £200/month pay cut to our household budget and I had another one on the phone the other day who was very pushy about my inability to up my donations.

I still won't stop donating to charity, because I know it's not the fault of the starving children in Africa.

But I am beginning to think of jotting down the name of every caller with a view to ringing up the charity to complain if they are too rude or persistent.

Trills Tue 19-Mar-13 08:46:40

Are you being unreasonable to confess?
Or are you being unreasonable not to donate?

Trills Tue 19-Mar-13 08:48:42

If you think that someone capable and competent will take on the responsibility of running a charity for minimum wage then YAB naive at best.

Feminine Tue 19-Mar-13 08:51:10

I don't, well not on a regular basis.

I did give to the dogs trust, but then too many leaflets came back with pictures of dogs that we couldn't visit. confused

I decided they must all be dog models.

Sugarice Tue 19-Mar-13 08:53:01

I donate but only to British Heart Foundation and Cardiac Risk in the Young.

I don't put coins in a tin at a supermarket.

There is a very annoying woman who calls round here working for Christian Aid who puts those envelopes through your letterbox then calls back the next evening and waits for ages til you answer the door expecting a bulging coin filled envelope, she's very very persistent and pushy which really pisses me off.

RivalSibling Tue 19-Mar-13 08:56:47

There are fundraising standards charities should adhere to. If you feel bullied than please complain - as you say, it does give charities a bad name.

Sadly charities have taken this route because they feel they have to. Regular Direct Debits are an extremely valuable source of income, and other sources of income are falling off a cliff.

If you do want to donate, this is a good way of doing it, but you shouldn't feel bullied or pressurised.

HousewifeFromHeaven Tue 19-Mar-13 08:58:09

I give a few quid to my local homeless men. My dh gives them a fag on passing.

I buy the big issue. I give my old clothes to the hospice shop, and also buy my books there.

I go to the help for heroes events. I sponsor my kids and my relatives kids.

So I rekon I'm not alone? We probably all give to charity in these ways

HousewifeFromHeaven Tue 19-Mar-13 08:59:11

Maybe you don't all give fags to the homeless though grin

cory Tue 19-Mar-13 08:59:35

I don't mind if the people who run the charities get reasonable wages. I do care when there are scandals about how the money is used because it damages the good work.

(there was one in my home country recently about a major international charity, it turned out money was being creamed off to support a luxury lifestyle for its directing staff way beyond their salaries, and all my relatives have stopped supporting the charity in question).

And I do think the fundraising should either be done by volunteers or by people who are given proper training around the vulnerable.

It always strikes me that the Big Issue sellers down in town are so well mannered though they must be desperate for a sale, while the charity fundraisers next to them are often hectoring and rude. It shows that training counts for a lot.

NinaHeart Tue 19-Mar-13 09:04:25

Interesting...this is the third "I hate charity fundraising" thread in as many weeks.

As I have explained on the other two, I work as a fundraiser for a charity and whilst I undersatnd that people don't like being "bothered", particularly at home, I am rather hurt that the importance of charities is being overlooked. If you have any family member or friend who has ever benfitted from an advance in medical science, for example, you can bet that it was funded , at least in part, through charitable giving. This is how it works.

I am employed (and yes, paid) becasue I raise many times my costs for the charity. It is financially worthwhile and yes, it saves lives!

Why are we suddenly the new bankers or estate agents - worthy only of other peoples' ire and mistrust?

colleysmill Tue 19-Mar-13 09:04:40

I tend to donate regularly to charities that are close to me or give something back to charities we have used.

Our local hospice runs a wonderful support system for anyone who is bereaved even if you didn't access the inpatient part. The groups have been a lifeline to my father since my mum died and he still goes as part of their friendship group and as a volunteer to those accessing the groups at the beginning of their journey. Its a simple concept really but one of real value and it would be a real loss to the local community if it stopped running so I donate to them mainly.

INeverSaidThat Tue 19-Mar-13 09:09:40

I give time directly to help but I don't generally give money. I have always given my time (I m a SAHM with older DCs) but over the years I have started to give less money because I don't trust where the money goes to. I volunteer with something that directly helps local people. I enjoy it and it is very worthwhile. We are lucky as my DH has a good job and this is a good way to 'give back'

I used to always give a couple of quid to anyone I saw rattling a collection box back when there were no chuggers and the chief exec's of large charities were not paid ridiculous salaries. Now I don't....

I also don't like the overlap between commercial and charitable events such as the London Marathon. If it were purely charitable I would give loads but the fact that people (organisers/marketers etc) get rich with it makes me very uncomfortable.

I NEVER give to people who call at the house, I NEVER give to chuggers and I NEVER give to highly organised/marketed appeals. I don't support pseudo charity events (marathons etc) which are actually run by profit making companies.

RivalSibling Tue 19-Mar-13 09:17:12

Yes, Nina, and a lot of charities provide services which simply wouldn't exist if it was left to the government to provide them, for example around mental health or youth support. Sometimes they are set up by people who were affected by an issue and then discovered the gap in services (think Missing People - set up after Suzy Lamplugh went missing).

Good charities are close to their service users and work incredibly hard to get things right for them - often with very little money.

Nancy66 Tue 19-Mar-13 09:21:58

I do donate but I spend a long time researching the charities before I donate to them. I also tend to choose the smaller, less well-known ones.

I would also never give money to an animal charity as I prioritise human life over that of a dog, cat or bird.

WorraLiberty Tue 19-Mar-13 09:26:50

It's up to you what you do with your money OP.

But I have to ask what makes you trust the church and not other charities?

Do you pay the church by DD and do they give you a break down of what your donations are spent on?

Or do you pop it in the collection tray every Sunday and hope for the best?

Ragwort Tue 19-Mar-13 09:28:48

I give time and money to a variety of charities and 'good causes' that I support.

There are some charities and organisations that don't share my values animal charities so I don't give to them.

Of course it is up to every individual to give (or not) to whatever they like but I do get a little irritated when people are more than happy to take advantage of a charity or organisation without supporting it at all - especially things like PTAs/scouting/childrens' sports clubs etc which are all run (in the main) by volunteers. One of our Brownie parents is happy to tell me, via her iphone shock, that she can't afford the subs.

SkinnybitchWannabe Tue 19-Mar-13 09:32:18

YANBU. I give what I can to charities that mean something to me such as The British Heart Foundation.
I can't stand doorknockers and those who pounce on you on the must be a really tough job to do though.

AmberSocks Tue 19-Mar-13 09:32:22

i dont trust them either but i trust the church even less....would rather give my money to charity if i had to make a choice.

my dhs business works with a charity,making them a huge amount of money,so i guess i feel like we have it covered.

NinaHeart Tue 19-Mar-13 09:37:45

Well, if anyone is interested enough to want to know where the money donated to the charity I work for goes, I would be happy to give a full breakdown!

Last year we gave 107% of our income for charitable purposes. That means we used some of our free reserves to maintain our charitable objects.

RivalSibling Tue 19-Mar-13 09:37:50

If church organisations were subject to the same scrutiny as charities quite a few of them would probably be closed down.

Smudging Tue 19-Mar-13 09:39:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

crashdoll Tue 19-Mar-13 09:40:08

Giving your time is just as valuable if not more! This is what I do.

Toasttoppers Tue 19-Mar-13 09:40:17

I had a chugger come to my door just as I was cooking dinner last night. I never do business at the door is always my reply. I don't care if they have a laminated card I feel hugely uncomfortable and don't wish to give my bank details to anyone. It was so difficult as was a cancer charity and my Dad has just been diagnosed with cancer.

I also do voluntary work and have years under my belt. I donate most of my used stuff to charity, they sent a letter a few weeks ago and they had raised fifty quid. I buy about half of all our clothing from charity shops. There are other ways.

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 09:50:18

My comment on minimum wagw was meant to be tongue in cheek.

But when I read that some well know charities pay their chief executives in excess of a million pounds a year I was rather shocked.

Also I did not read this in any paper is was year end results that I was involved in.

Wallison Tue 19-Mar-13 09:54:35

I think it's a very personal thing, as it's your own individual money. No-one should be made to feel guilty about the choices that they make because ultimately the decision about what charities to support comes down to value systems. So OP as long as you are happy with your decision, I think that is the main thing. I support a couple of charities that I got to know while doing development work because I know where my money will be going and I want to assist them in the work they do.

However, I also do things that I know other people think I shouldn't - I will give money to homeless people who are begging on the street; not every time, but I do do it. I know that even homeless charities say not to do this, but there are times when I can't just walk past someone sitting in the rain/snow as I go back to my nice warm house. Anyway, I figure it's my money and if I want to do it, it's up to me. I also buy food (a Big Mac always goes down very well for one guy I've got to know) and hot drinks/soup for them, but if they just want money then that's fair enough too.

timidviper Tue 19-Mar-13 09:56:05

Charity is not compulsory. Do what your budget and conscience dictate and all will be fine.

Crinkle77 Tue 19-Mar-13 09:59:12

I have to be honest I have got fed up with people constantly wanting money off me for some charity thing or another. I am fed up of people wanting sponsorship. It has got to the point now that every week someone is doing a sponsored something or another and tries to guilt trip you.

Wallison Tue 19-Mar-13 10:05:06

I tend not to give that much for sponsored this that and the other. Like I say, I have my charities that I donate to and actually I do voluntary work as well. So I'm happy with the contribution that I make to the third sector and don't feel the need to do any more.

Half the time these sponsored things are just glorified jaunts anyway. For eg I've got one friend who's trying to raise money by going to Machu Picchu, ffs - no, I will not pay for you to have a fucking holiday.

weegiemum Tue 19-Mar-13 10:05:47

I work for a small charity that aids women who are illiterate in gaining literacy and numeracy skills. Love my job.

We give approx10% of gross income away. Some to our church, otherwise to several charities we know and like.

As a matter of principle we don't give to street-chuggers or the ones who bang on the door. Or the ones who phone. We give where and when we choose.

Thingiebob Tue 19-Mar-13 10:09:13

I have worked for two CEOs of two very well known charities and their annual wage was surprisingly low. Two high profile medical charities at that.

Having worked in the charitable sector for some years and seen the direct impact fundraising makes on service provision and how those in need benefit, I cringe when I hear people declaring they don't trust charity and how the money gets swallowed up in admin and running costs. Not true in most cases.

I would rather give to charity than to the church. Most corrupt organisation there is!

It's your money though.

mrsjay Tue 19-Mar-13 10:10:40

Does the church give a spread sheet to see where the money is going confused I think yabu and paranoid , but I dont think yabu to not donate to charity, I would work on trusting others and not just your church

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 11:46:32

What charity pays that much? I work for a national charity. Our chief executive is lovely, works hard at raising our profile, is where the buck stops with regards to decisions we're making (accountability comes at a price) and gets paid £65k which is a hell of lot more than I'll ever earn, but hardly scandalous is it?

poshme Tue 19-Mar-13 11:59:46

It's interesting how many people ask if the church provides a spreadsheet of where the money goes- we give to our church, and every year they do show us where the money goes at the AGM. The accounts are available for anyone to see at any time- they just have to ask. And there is a graph on the wall of the church showing where the money goes.
Not all churches keep these things secret.

JesusInTheCabbageVan Tue 19-Mar-13 12:02:54

BrokenBritain that is an excellent point.

Comfysofas your point is not an excellent point. It is the point of someone who hasn't really thought things through.

mrsjay Tue 19-Mar-13 12:05:51

t's interesting how many people ask if the church provides a spreadsheet of where the money goes- we give to our church, and every year they do show us where the money goes at the AGM. The accounts are available for anyone to see at any time- they just have to ask. And there is a graph on the wall of the church showing where the money goes.

charities do exactly the same though the OP is not convinced her money will go where it says it does all ins and outs of donations for any charity can be seen, I have nothing against churches fwiw I was just trying to ask a question

WMittens Tue 19-Mar-13 13:13:48

I think charity donations are a personal thing, it's up to each individual if they choose to support a charity or not.

specialsubject Tue 19-Mar-13 13:19:40

you DO give - your time. That is expensive stuff.

The overheads for Comic Relief are massive and I am not convinced that it is the best use of charitable donations.

I will refrain from comment on donating to religion - but it is your money and up to you.

WMittens Tue 19-Mar-13 13:21:18


"What charity pays that much?"

I don't know the amount you were querying, but this link gives a list of CEO salaries. I can't see a source date, but the copyright notice at the bottom says 2011.,12406,1042677,00.html

The highest I could see from a glance was £205,000 for the Royal Opera House CEO, who also had the highest pay rise on the previous year (nearly 25%).

The CEO of Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund has the highest salary per charity income.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 13:32:32

comfysofas mentions several charities paying chief executives in excess of 1 million a year, that's what I was querying.

Broken: I never said that at all. I said that I didn't want to support charities who used chuggers, and phone salesmen (specifically those paid for it) who coerced people into giving them money. I don't like charities who have a new ad campaign every other week (or so it seems). If I donate, I want my money to go to the people the charity represents, not a young gap year student who is being paid £8 an hour, given a free or very cheap house and then given huge bonuses depending on how many people sign up or to the people who employ them to do this.

"Typically our fundraisers earn approximately £1500.00 per month with our generous performance related pay structure" That is too much to give a chugger or door to door salesman. The typical pay before 'bonuses' is usually around £1000 minimum.

However on the subject of the salaries of those higher up in the charities, I do think that some get way more than what is reasonable. They do deserve a decent pay packet, but one that is excessive it drawing too much from the money people donate for the cause.

NinaHeart Tue 19-Mar-13 14:03:50

All charity accounts can be viewed online at the Charity Commission, unless they have an annual income of less than £25K.
In 24 years of charity work, I have never come across a British charity that pays it's CEO anywhere near £1m. I'd be interested to hear who it is.

NinaHeart Tue 19-Mar-13 14:09:50

And I resent the inference that charities waste money - where I work, for example, aside from a pension contribution (which is getting to be compulsory these days) we have no other "perks" or benefits. No gym membership, no private health care, no pay rises for 5 years, no staff room, statutory sick and maternity benefits only, no kitchen (I can't even wash up my coffee cup, except in the basin in the toilet), drinking water has to be bought from Sainsburys....
And an expectation that everyone will work way over their contracted hours.

An easy life in the third sector is perhaps not looking quite so attractive now?

MrsDeVere Tue 19-Mar-13 17:00:22

I have to agree with Nina on that. I have never worked for a charity that awarded any perks to its employees. Not at my level anyway.
When you work for a charity you are expected to suck it up and get on with it.
I have worked in freezing cold offices, reused envelopes looooong before recycling was the norm etc.

Mind you I work in the public sector now and its costing me a sodding fortune. hmm

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 17:23:16


The salary pay you gave in the links are 10 years old.

It is not just the salary that counts its all the freebies and bonuses.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 17:24:07

The chuggers aren't generally employed by the charity. Charities use agencies to generate fundraising leads, they pay these agencies a fee for each lead signed up. Free or cheap house? For chuggers? Really?

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 17:25:16

Bonuses to who?

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 17:29:04


They come in all guises free holidays etc etc etc.

You are very naive if you don't believe this happens.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 17:32:23

Comfy you need to start backing up some of these claims of perks, bonuses, salaries in excess of one million pounds.

My charity pays less than the equivalent of public sector workers doing the same kind of job. No one has a company car but we do get to claim mileage - what a perk that is! No overtime. Ever. You just get to take the time back.

If I go on a residential trip with the young people I work with I get paid my normal week, despite working solidly. I can take the rest of the time back as owed in lieu however it's not physically possible to take it all back without being off for weeks which isn't going to happen, my service needs are more important.

We do get a few more days annual leave than moat people but that's only because it's cost neutral, no one is drafted in to cover leave.

So what perks?

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 17:33:14

Free holidays?

Who? Where?

DomesticCEO Tue 19-Mar-13 17:35:04

What does the church do with your money OP?

gordyslovesheep Tue 19-Mar-13 17:36:18

'charity' is a big word though - every charity is different some big - so naturally with bigger expenses some small and with less staff

YANBU - you do donate - you donate time

it's not compulsory to give to any charity !

gordyslovesheep Tue 19-Mar-13 17:38:19

ps Comfy are you confusing 'charities' with 'banks' ?

midastouch Tue 19-Mar-13 17:39:11

i think YABU not even clothes to a charity in the high street? I give clothes and old toys to charity shops, whats not to trust. And i always put some change in people collection boxes, whats the harm? its not going to break the bank giving 50p. The only charity i dont give to is the RSPCA because i think theyre useless!

infamouspoo Tue 19-Mar-13 17:42:02

Obviously its up to you and your money but children's hospices would fold without donations then where would families with dying children go for respite and end of life care?

Sirzy Tue 19-Mar-13 17:43:18

I would love to see comfy providing some evidence to back up her claims.

What people like comfy need to remember is that big charities have to operate in a business like way, they often have a lot of resources, volunteers, clients etc which need to be well organised and manage so they can meet their charitable goals. In order to do this they have to pay staff to work to the quality that is needed to do that.

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 17:45:00

I understand it all and therefore you must understand what I know is confidential.

A charity is just a ''business' like any other.

VAVAV00M Tue 19-Mar-13 17:46:29

The church runs a day care, run by volunteers for the kids in the local school where there is no after school club, the donations help pay for heating, books and toys.

My area is in the middle of no where so no real other day cares either, I also take a few nights their to help out a month.

FFS at the judgey people. It's an innocent belief not a war.

infamouspoo Tue 19-Mar-13 17:47:46

Just watching the CEO of the catholic church sat on his gold throne. I expect the others are the same. So the Church is hardly any different from any other charity.

cantspel Tue 19-Mar-13 17:52:45

One of my inlaws worked for a large charity in their london offices. The were what would have used to be called an office manager. Ordering the stationary, making sure rooms were available for conferences and prayer times for those who needed them etc Nothing out of the ordinary or too taxing, Earning £40k approx and plenty of freebie days out. Trips to the races, tickets for sporting events and paid for lunches.

GrendelsMum Tue 19-Mar-13 17:59:43

As someone's said, the accounts for parish churches are extremely open - as someone on the parish roll, I quite literally get them posted through my door every year if I don't attend the annual meeting. My money goes to pay for pretty much what you'd expect - our heating, our electricity, our repairs, our photocopying and our staff costs (i.e. our vicar and contributions towards dioscece).

I also work for a charity, and although I certainly earn a considerable amount more than the minimum wage, the trustees of the charity believe that the impact I have towards the charity's aims justifies the cost of my salary. Our charity takes the view that if you can achieve your aim significantly more effectively by spending money, then you should do so. Our trustees also have strong concerns over using people to work for free under the guise of work experience placements.

I've never had a trip to the races or a ticket for a sporting event, although I'd agree that I've had quite a few free sandwich when we're hosting lunch time meetings and training sessions for service users.

zwischenzug Tue 19-Mar-13 18:02:04

I don't blame you for not donating to RND, after Terry Wogan siphoned off thousands of pounds from Children in Need every year in "appearance fees" until he was found out a few years ago I'm surprised anybody has anything to do with a BBC organised charity.

It's important to know what you're donating to - if you give money to some random with a rattling tin or some random sponsored events who knows where the fuck your money goes.

A lot of charities are wasteful, but unfortunately it's often either that or don't have anyone doing anything for the social injustice that you want to fight.

zwischenzug Tue 19-Mar-13 18:02:41

There is a very annoying woman who calls round here working for Christian Aid who puts those envelopes through your letterbox then calls back the next evening and waits for ages til you answer the door expecting a bulging coin filled envelope,

That's easily solved, fill the envelope full of leaves. She won't come back.

grimbletart Tue 19-Mar-13 18:03:40

I can see both sides of the debate.

I support six charities via direct debit. The minute any one of those phones me/doorsteps me to pressurise me into paying more I will cancel my direct debit. No ifs or buts. And I won't feel the slightest bit guilty.

OTOH a couple of decades ago I worked for one of Europe's biggest medical research charities - an organisation full of highly talented and brilliant scientists. The Director was well paid (less than, say, he could have got in the pharmaceutical industry) but well paid by normal standards. And we had to deal with moans about that. It's a charity blah blah....Well no, it was a fucking brilliant scientific organisation working to save the lives of thousands - including that of moaners and their families, and it needed someone brilliant to direct it effectively, efficiently and cost-effectively.

Our criticised director worked more hours in a day than most people ever would. He was hardly ever off duty. Any private time was subsumed into travelling round the world organising collaborations in research, passing on his considerable knowledge to other countries etc, supporting our volunteers, never mind running his own lab and research programme as well. It was vital the charity was run by an extremely professional and world-renowned scientist who directed the best research, saw that monies were wisely spent and to the best effect. Why should he not have a decent standard of living like everyone else at his professional level?

You pay peanuts? You get monkeys.

I work with a national charity (they pay me for a service I provide, far less than they would have to pay anyone else to do it, plus I volunteer a load of my time on top) which is run and managed entirely by volunteers. The chair would love a salary, or some perks over and above lunch at the annual conference. Not all charities have staff and expenses budgets and hundreds of thousands of pounds sloshing.

zwischenzug Tue 19-Mar-13 18:12:02

I agree, unfortunately some people have this misguided few that a charity is only a charity if it is run by scruffy looking uneducated volunteers scratching about who trundle back to hostels every night after working unpaid.

It's better to look at charities as companies providing a service that does not make a profit and is not commercially viable in the private sector, and which the government for whatever reason (to keep taxes down usually) isn't about to pay for. And your donation is a voluntary and targeted tax contribution to fund that company to provide the service it does.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 18:15:28

Why would you punish the charity for trying to maximise it's funds? That's the value point in charities paying these companies to sign people up, the charity get a database of supporters and hope some will increase their donation as they lean more about how their money is being used.

grovel Tue 19-Mar-13 18:16:45

zwischenzug, or may I call you intermezzo (?), that's well put. And, sometimes the government support the will of the people through GiftAid.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 18:17:28

comfy did you not say you read it in the paper?

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 18:24:30

My bad, you did not read it in the paper. All charity accounts are public, so what's the secret?

cory Tue 19-Mar-13 18:30:20

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 18:15:28
"Why would you punish the charity for trying to maximise it's funds? "

If they harass and bully vulnerable people then I think it is understandable.

My disabled dd was helped by one of the main charities when we were at a low point and I am very grateful.

But rather less grateful when the same charity then kept ringing me up and hassling me because I was unable to up my donation: I was in tears on the phone trying to explain I had just lost my job and that we were at our knees trying to meet dd's needs with no funding, and the paid charity fundraiser openly sneered at the idea that I might not be able to up my monthly donation. And then they rang again...

I had the same charity on the phone the other day: again, expressing open incredulity at the thought that we had reached our limit and refusing to stop the conversation.

You feel horrible having to slam the phone down on somebody who has helped you in the past, but what can you do?

I still won't cancel my current donation: I do believe in their cause, just not in the way they go about fundraising, the people they employ to do it and the way they train them. Big Issue do this so much better.

BrokenBritain Tue 19-Mar-13 18:43:56

Confused: my apologies, I meant Comfy. I realised as soon as I'd done it that I'd put the wrong name but was on my way to work and haven't had access to mnet till now, it's been bugging me all day! My bad flowers

KatyPeril Tue 19-Mar-13 18:57:01

YANBU. I don't think anyone should be guilted into giving.

Gingerodgers Tue 19-Mar-13 19:07:55

I haven't read the entire thread, so sorry if this has been said before..... I think that when good causes, eg child cancer, get posted on fb with requests to like if you have a heart, ignore if you don't type thing, then people who like, somehow feel they are giving to charity, even tho they are not, and this somehow makes them feel better.

JesusInTheCabbageVan Tue 19-Mar-13 19:10:27

Bottom line, surely, is that large reputable charities at the least DO use the money they receive to save lives and improve lives. OK, not all of it, and maybe some of it even goes to funding somebody's comfortable, verging on decadent lifestyle. If the thought of that galls you so much that you don't give a shit about the people in need who won't benefit because you don't donate, then that's a shame.

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 19:22:37

No I did read it in the papers.

Please re read the thread.

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 19:22:50

I mean I did'nt

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 19:25:47

This was my post and this is why I find MN tedious at times.

If you are going to comment please make sure you understand what has been said.

*My comment on minimum wagw was meant to be tongue in cheek.

But when I read that some well know charities pay their chief executives in excess of a million pounds a year I was rather shocked.

Also I did not read this in any paper is was year end results that I was involved in.*

HappyMummyOfOne Tue 19-Mar-13 19:29:38

I think its wise to give carefully to charity, you want to ensure the money is actually helping the cause rather than just paying wages etc.

I mainly stick to solely the PTA now as have a large say in how its spent and it ll goes ln the children and school. We do give to the local hospital but usually in the form of new toys or dvds etc as boredom can be rife for long term stays.

GrendelsMum Tue 19-Mar-13 19:30:23

I had an excellent experience with the Wildlife Trust recently (well done Wildlife Trust if you're reading this)

I give them a monthly donation. A lady phoned up from the local branch, thanked me for having donated for a year, and said, sounding a bit embarrassed, 'look, you're already one of our larger regular donors, and we don't like to pester people for money, but would you be able to donate a bit extra for this particular local project?'. I said I'd rather not. She said something like 'I completely understand that, and we really appreciate your regular donations'. No pressure, and I'll probably donate a bit extra for another particular project that was in the magazine.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 19:45:21

Tedious comfy? You're telling me it's tedious when you're there saying charity staff earn millions, get free holidays, bonuses etc etc then quantify it by saying it's true because you just know yup, that's tedious. I'd go as far as to say you're talking pish, utter pish, but I'd love you to prove me wrong.

comfysofas Tue 19-Mar-13 19:49:33

Please read my posts

CONFIDENTIALITY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


MrsKeithRichards Tue 19-Mar-13 19:57:33

Yeah right then.

cherryvanillajam Tue 19-Mar-13 20:25:00

Sorry -sounds like a flimsy excuse not to donate. Like people who say 'charity begins at home' as a reason for not giving to overseas charities then don't give to UK charities either.

All decent charities will post their expenditure on their website. What makes you think your donation is so special that you deserve a penny by penny breakdown?

Just admit that you're too tight to give rather than hiding behind crappy excuses...same goes for many people on this thread.

WMittens Tue 19-Mar-13 20:56:00

I understand it all and therefore you must understand what I know is confidential.

A charity is just a ''business' like any other.

And just like any other business, as MrsKeithRichards pointed out, their accounts are a matter of public record.

Here is a more recent article: - November 2011
"The highest salary reported is £167,000."

Link to ACEVO PAy Survey 2011/2012

Catmint Tue 19-Mar-13 21:31:25

I work for a national/local charity.

I get paid a living wage. As a previous poster said, no perks, and a three year pay freeze. There is a culture of working additional hours to patch over where we don't have the resources to do what we need to achieve. Obviously we don't get paid for that.

In common with other charities we are accountable for every penny spent.

And we do quite a lot of life-changing good stuff As well by application of skill, judgement, hard work.

I am very sorry that there are untrustworthy charities out there, but there are hundreds of amazing ones too. I don't mind if people choose not to donate or donate time instead. But the lack of trust upsets me.

motherinferior Tue 19-Mar-13 21:38:20

I've worked all round the voluntary sector in my time. I assess applicants for the main leadership programme in the sector (and they are all pretty damn amazing). My partner works for one of the major funders.

Holidays? Perks? What planet are you on??

cory Tue 19-Mar-13 22:20:20

In this context I am always reminded of the salutary and moral tale of the Chevalier Bayard in the 15th century or whenever it was. He was walking along with his squire one day and came across some ladies whom he naturally saluted in his polite and chivalrous way.

- But my lord, exclaimed the shocked squire, do you know who those ladies are that you are saluting so humbly? They are... public ladies!

-Verily, said the Chevalier, I would rather salute a hundred public ladies than run the risk of omitting to salute one real lady.

I am happy to run the risk of funding a few charity workers, paying for the paperwork and possibly even funding one or two undeserving people rather than run the risk of not doing my bit to help one genuinely starving child. The latter risk seems to me the more serious.

Yfronts Wed 20-Mar-13 00:31:14

We don't give monthly money donations to charity however I donate all our old clothes and items to jumble sales or charity shops. I also buy items from charity shops etc. I recon over the years they have made a small fortune on my back.

deleted203 Wed 20-Mar-13 01:01:27

I donate to charities when I choose to. I dislike being asked. Or having tins rattled at me in the street. There are certain charities I think do good work - and I'll chuck a couple of quid in a tin if I see them. Others I don't actually 'feel the love' for and resent other people trying to guilt me into donating to them. It's a very personal thing IMO. So yes...I'm sure the WWF do a fantastic job. But I don't care greatly about saving the white tiger or whatever. I'd rather give my money to the NSPCC perhaps. I think my main feeling is that there are just too many charities, all wanting money. And my budget is pretty limited.

I get really irritated by people wanting me to donate to 'their' pet cause. You might support British Heart Foundation. I might support Cancer Research. Probably for family reasons, as you/I have lost family members to this specific illness. It doesn't mean yours isn't a great charity. It just means I choose to donate to something different - and I can't afford to donate to everything.

HillBilly76 Wed 20-Mar-13 01:07:50

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

piprabbit Wed 20-Mar-13 01:37:06

A charity is just a business, like any other? I hate how every charity, no matter how genuine is tarred with the brush of big business.

My DPs (both in their 70s) are heavily involved a tiny, local charity. They helped found it, have found volunteers to help them, spend many, many hours every week doing the admin they need to raise funds via grants, keep grant providers happy and ensure volunteers are trained and CRB checked.

Neither they nor any of the volunteers have ever made a penny out of the charity. All the money raised is spent on funding materials/venues/creches etc. for the people that the charity supports.

They never ask members of the public for donations. They would be devastated to know that so many people see them as money grabbing con artists sad.

BadLad Wed 20-Mar-13 02:29:59

I buy the Big Issue. Wish I could do more, because the homeless are treated like scum in this country (not the UK).

In the UK I used to donate to Cancer research every so often. I ignore chuggers and am quite short with door-to-door collectors.

DomesticCEO Wed 20-Mar-13 08:21:27

HillBilly, what a ridiculous post! Charities don't just help the poor - I work for a children's hospice - how do you suggest people "cut out the middle man" with our charity?

What ignorance!

RivalSibling Wed 20-Mar-13 08:23:11

HillBilly, giving money direct to the poor is all well and good but charities do so much more, often in areas of life where most of us don't even know there is a need. Some charities bring change not only to individuals but to society as a whole.

People need more than a handout. Some need expert advice, skilled listening support, regular services. Some would like a cure for cancer or better understanding of what Alzheimer's is doing to their spouse.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Wed 20-Mar-13 08:46:33

Oh comfy you have made me giggle, tapping the side if your nose and winking "confidentiality"

Look, if you have been working on end year accounts which hide something of that scale and the salary does not appear in the audited and published accounts ( as available to everybody on the charity commission website) then really you need to be considering that this is fraud and should be reported.

Otoh, i actually dont believe you.

JesusInTheCabbageVan Wed 20-Mar-13 09:02:06

<Cheers Mary>

JesusInTheCabbageVan Wed 20-Mar-13 09:04:25

Oh, and HillBilly, I know someone who thinks the same. She's a right uninformed twat and I suspect a bit of a troll stirrer.

cory Wed 20-Mar-13 18:14:05

HillBilly76 Wed 20-Mar-13 01:07:50
"Charities are a con. They just exist to make people feel better about themselves and to give well-paid jobs to otherwise unemployable lefties. If you want to give money to the poor, cut out the middleman and give money directly to the poor. "

Where were you when I was sobbing my heart out because the hospital refused to let dd borrow a wheelchair? And did you even have a second-hand wheelchair to spare?

If we were all to travel to Africa with our individual gifts to to individual refugees won't that be an awful waste of money that could go to the people in genuine need instead?

Oblomov Wed 20-Mar-13 18:31:01

Well, I don't have a DD set up. But i give to , sponsorship forms, every time ds1 has a dress up day at school. Dropping money into boxes as I pass in town centres. letting ds1 and ds2 put 2p/5p into slot in tesco where coin goes round and round etc, which they ADORE.
It is enough. I think.

montage Wed 20-Mar-13 18:39:59

It's fairly quick to research which charities are most effective though

scroll down the page to see different ways you can choose to work it out.

The "Give Directly" charity for example simply transfers money to poor households in Kenya - over 90% of what you give.

GrendelsMum Wed 20-Mar-13 19:57:20

This is a lively, thought-provoking and possibly controversial talk about the effectiveness of charities paying high salaries, spending lots of marketing, and achieving goals quickly.

Well worth watching if you're interested in the sector.

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