Thursday, June 14, 2007

Give 'Til It Hurts

One thing I hate about attending the Capitol Pride Street Festival is running the HRC gauntlet. Every five steps one is accosted by a perky little volunteer saying, "Hi, do you have a few moments to talk about HRC?"

Erm. No. And I also don't have a few dollars to give to HRC either. Their cute little faces get these sad little crushed expressions, and it makes me feel a teeny-tiny twinge of guilt.

I don't really like explaining that 1) I don't give to political organizations, 2) HRC's administrative and fundraising (AFR) expenses seem a little high, and 3) HRC hasn't impressed me with their overall effectiveness.

According to Charity Navigator (which is a very cool site, until it stopped working for me), HRC's AFR is 35.4%. The Combined Federal Campaign website states that "an AFR in excess of 35% is considered high by many in the philanthropic community."

I prefer to give my money to smaller, more locally-focused organizations. I have donated this year to the Washington Animal Rescue League (AFR = 24.5%) and Food and Friends (AFR = 22.7%). I also usually donate to the Whitman-Walker Clinic; however, their AFR of 40.5% is making me think more seriously about that. Still, WWC does good work so I will probably continue to donate to them.

I also donate money to any friend of mine who asks me to contribute to their fundraising efforts. After raising nearly $2000 in 2001 for the AIDS Marathon Training Program, I feel individual fundraiser's pain. It's hard work, and I'm sure Junior Achievement, Boys and Girls Club of Metro Atlanta, and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society have all benefited from my friends' efforts.

[Big finish. Excellent concluding remarks. Summarizes beautifully.]

*smooches*

7 comments:

  1. Vuboq knows strange knowledge. AFR? Wow. I guess you gotta have some kind of benchmark, else you'd be giving money away willy nilly.

    I HATE BEING CANVASSES WHILE WALKING DOWN THE STREET. *sigh*

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  2. Disclaimer: If the comment above is bitchy in any way, I apologize.

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  3. Canvassed. Canvassed. Not CANVASSES.

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  4. Bossy really hates to part with money. Such sweet sorrow, without the sweet.

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  5. HRC seems both useless and corrupt.

    In the meantime, please make your donation checks out to "GayProf's Bahama Fund."

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  6. I can believe that clinics probably have higher overhead than other types of organizations; you might want to look into that before you give up donating to them.

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  7. I can't believe that's an effective way of fundraising. I find it unfathomable that HRC thinks it is. It's one thing to do it at a gay festival, when you have a captive, generally favorably inclined audience. But at lunch hour in the middle of a weekday? I hate being assaulted on the street, no matter what the organization. I said that (and more) to an HRC canvasser a while back. It completely threw her for a loop, and I felt kind of bad . . . but not too bad. And I've even given to HRC on my own (despite sharing your misgivings about them)!

    Then there's the election-season classic: "Hi! Do you want to help put a Democrat in the White House?" Yes, I do, and that's why I'm voting for one. Now get out of my way.

    I was just thinking (for the millionth time) of blogging about this the other day. Thanks for doing it for me.

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