Barry Porter doesn’t want you to take this the wrong way, but you can keep your canned corn, blankets and gently worn clothes.He wants your money.Or blood.Porter, regional executive director of the American Red Cross, told me Wednesday that, while the organization appreciates the donations of food, clothing and blankets, cash is better. "It’s easier to support the Red Cross with money,” he said, because money makes it easier for it to get what people need and to get what they need to them.
Comments: I still remember 9/11, and Red Cross. Where does al of the money go? How much overhead do they have. Personally, I trust the Salvation Army.
I was going to add my 2¢ worth; but I see the Ldotters have it covered. I sent money to the Salvation Army. I know they won't save it or spend it on a computer-system upgrade as did the Red Cross after the first 9/11!
I helped with Katrina victim relief in Louisiana. It was a joint FEMA/Red Cross effort. People donated everything in the world, some of it essential, a lot of it wasted. Too many clothing items and not enough frying pans. I'm in sympathy with those who say send money instead so the right purchases can be made. However, I was surprised to be approached by one of the Red Cross volunteers asking me for money for herself. She declared herself a victim and was very disappointed when I told her I only had 25 dollars with me.
Cash can go anywhere, and does. I have heard that some cash goes to the Red Crescent.
Here are some cans, bucko.
BTW, I give blood through the red cross. There is no better organization to collect blood and distribute it (at a fee that should cover costs). But any thought that it is a humanitarian organization can be quickly dispelled by looking at the pay levels of the execs there.
Remember, Romney took no salary as governor of Massachusetts.
Of course they want cash. They can fit only so many canned goods in their pantries at home....and how many blankets do you need? Plus, you can't pay bonuses to your execs in cans of chicken noodle soup.
To really make sure your donation dollars get to the people who need them, give to local charities and local chapters of the Salvation Army. That way they get the money right away, instead for waiting for the national organization to process it, split it up, take out their admin costs etc.
Years ago in college a friend told me how the RC snubbed him when he needed help, but the SA came through for him. That opened my eyes. I have never given one penny to the RC but always put cash in the bell ringer's bucket. Every time I see one. Yesterday in the store a young man came up to us asking for .38 to go with what he had to buy a loaf of bread and a liter of soda. DH gave him the coins in his pocket and the man thanked us. As we were leaving he showed DH the items in the bag. I don't mind giving someone $ for food but not alcohol.
It really depends on how close you live to the disaster. If you are nearby, then cases of water and food that doesn't spoil can be much appreciated when stores in the disaster area are closed. On the other hand, if you are 200 miles away, then the cost to organize and transport the donated supplies may be more than the cost to simply purchase them 20 miles from the disaster site.
Every nonprofit runs into this problem; they aren't equipped for the often expensive job of sorting, transporting and storing what people want to donate. So most of the time, unless you live very near the disaster, it is better to donate cash. If you just must get rid of your old things in an effort to help, hold a garage sale so your old things go to the poor who live near you and then donate the proceeds of the sale.
There are lots of great charities out there--not just two (ARC and Salvation Army). Personally, I like to donate to Samaritan's Purse. They have a stellar history of using the money where it's most needed. Of course, you can designate where it goes, too.
Or how about looking up some of the churches in and around NJ and NY and donating to them?
Another good place for your $$ to go is to Glenn Beck's mercuryone.org. He said he had two trucks loaded and ready to go on Saturday, waiting for information on where to take it. He pays all the expenses so all the donations go to food and other needs. You may not remember, but back in the summer when he was having the big get together in Texas, and all the volunteers helping people, he sent at least 11 truckloads of food across the country, much to Indian reservations.
Right you are #16, and in WWI, too. In fact, we never donate to ARC because hubby's grandfather used to talk about how the ARC charged and the USO wouldn't. He was still mad about it in his 80's.
BTW, not only do those guys get huge salaries, they get gigantic perks, too. Like super-luxury cars and drivers, etc. The SA's guys take hardly anything.
When a family member was on the board of the Boys and Girls club in my hometown in Alabama a few years ago, she found out the director (who was marginally qualified for anything, was very young and had very lttle experience) made $90K a year -a huge sum for her tiny town. To top it off, they got the board to do so much, she wondered what exactly was left for the "Executive Director" to do.
Charities -and the government- run the biggest scams their are.
If the Red Cross considers themselves the right ones to decide which way is easiest for supporters to make contributions, then the needy should tell the Red Cross which way is easiest for the organization to provide them support, and supporters should tell the needy which way is easiest for them to receive aid from the organization.
PS: Consider St. Vincent de Paul as your charity of choice. Feeding the hungry on the streets is one of the bigger parts of their ministry to the poor. If you insist on keeping it secular, then Second Harvest. They only ask for cash to provide fresh dairy, fruit, vegetables, and meat that readily spoil when donated through them.
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