How do I stop the flood of
Our dear Mimi from Windsor had cupboards full of unsolicited gifts emblazoned with the logos of various organizations: coffee mugs, fridge magnets, porcelain trinkets, and enough stationery to generously stock a mid sized company.
Mimi was a prime target a widowed pensioner in her 80s who wrote cheques every year to causes she cared about, but who also had a soft spot in her heart for anyone who sent her something. She kept sending donations because she wanted to reimburse the charity’s costs for sending the items, and so they kept sending the swag.
Imagine Canada was created in 2003 in part to promote greater public trust in the charitable and non profit sector. Its ethical code doesn’t refer specifically to unsolicited gifts, but it does require its member charities to michael kors ha michael kors handbags ndbags respect a donor’s request to withhold their name from any lists that it “rents” or exchanges with other organizations. That very active sharing of donor lists is likely how your collection of note pads and gift bags got so big.
We’re not talking about appreciation gifts mailed by organizations to whom you’ve donated throughout the year, or prizes given through telethons or other charitable lotteries, or us michael kors handbags eful programs like the War Amps key tags. We’re talking about pre emptive, blanket solicitation.
A lot of advice about choosing where to allocate your precious donation dollars focuses on charities’ “admin rate”: the percentage of revenues spent running the organization as opposed to its projects. That number should be a consideration, but it’s not the sole factor.
Instead, look at what percentage of an organization’s revenues are spent securing those revenues. A 2008 CBC report found that Canadian charities paid $762 million to third party fundraisers from 2004 08 less than 2 per cent of the approximately $40 billion donated by Canadians.
However, during that time, more than 200 charities paid more than 50 per cent of the revenues raised, to the third party. The Canada Revenue Agency, which is responsible for regulating charities, recommends a fundraising rate of less than 35 per cent, but will not raise a red flag to investigate the charity until it exceeds 70 per cent. So you may want to ask any prospective charity to provide its overall annual fundraising revenues and expenses.
But if you’re just turned off by the unsolicited swag, get your name taken off any transferred donor lists, or better yet, donate only to organizations that state: “We do michael kors handbags not sell our lists.”