Donations to charitable organizations aren’t really working
Donations to charitable organizations, a common way to being altruistic. But have you considered to whom you’re donating, and how sincere and effective these organizations are?
We are in the greatest of times in many aspects. Near-instantaneous telecommunications, more accessible education and healthcare, more sustainable and reliable food produce are a few examples.
Greatest of times, but there are still problems
As a matter of fact, not all of us are fortunate enough to enjoy these benefits that we take for granted. A majority of the human population is still years or perhaps even decades behind.
There are people who don’t have access to sanitary living conditions, nutritious food, or even potable water. Particularly in the developing and under-developed countries.
And even in some developed countries that are prone to natural disasters.
Seeing and staying in the know of such conditions makes us (some of us at least) want to help.
You read a report about a devastating earthquake or see a homeless person crawled up in an alley. You either ignore or pull out your wallet to offer what you can. Some hope to appeal to their karma and some do it simply because they want to.
Whatever the reason, the point is that someone gives and someone gets. Or do they?
Consider before you donate
Who and whether they the money depends on to whom you give your money. When you slip a few dollar bills into the hands of a person asking for help, yes, you give and they get.
But what about when you make donations to charitable organizations (like many of us do)? Have you thought about:
- Where the money goes?
- How much of it actually goes towards the cause?
- How much is pocketed by the organization itself?
- Whether the organization supports the causes it claims to?
Why it matters where your donation goes
A significant number of the kindhearted donors give their hard-earned money to charity organizations. They usually don’t ask questions. Instead they simply trust that the charity organizations do exactly as they say.
And they unknowingly end up filling the pockets of the charity’s management. Over a decade and a half, many scandals in the charity sector have been brought to light.
It’s noteworthy that most of what these charitable organizations receive comes from individual donors like you and me. This is in accordance with data provided by Giving USA Foundation, a non-profit organization.
Their data shows that Americans donated $390 billion (USD) in 2016. And $280 billion (USD) came straight from individual donors.
From Giving USA, educational institutions received about $60 billion (USD) and religious institutions received thrice as much. A staggering $120 billion was given to religious institutions.
Now, that is more of an FYI than a debate on the existence of superior powers.
There are many other organizations with varied goals. One organization may prevent malaria in an area by providing a bed net that costs $4 (USD) per person. And another organization might be curing malaria with medicine and treatment for $2,000 (USD).
It is important that you look at what the intentions and supported causes of the organization are.
However, deciding which cause is the right one is rather philosophical and entirely up to you. Before you decide though, make sure to do your research.
Lets put a pin on whether the supported cause is at all worth supporting and look at the trustworthiness and reliability of these organizations.
Issues with donations to charitable organizations
Most if not all of the operations of the charitable organizations happen behind closed curtains. It’s nearly impossible to keep track of the charitable funds that circulate through the organizations.
For instance, during the difficult times of Haiti earthquakes in 2010 the Red Cross volunteered to gather donations for aid. They were supposed to build 130,000 houses for the victims.
However they had built only built 6 houses. Just 6 out of the promised 130,000 houses. Evasive as they were, they simply said that had they spent the money for “aid and relief”.
The list of scandals goes on, which is inclusive of The Trump’s Foundation for Veterans. Reports say that the (now) president used the donations to resolve personal legal disputes instead.
With time it only becomes clearer that public’s trust in these charitable organizations are declining. That makes sense because we generally don’t trust what we can’t understand.
And we definitely can’t understand when there’s not enough information.
Lack of information leads to lack of transparency and ultimately, lack of trust. Almost all the organizations don’t have a way to show how, when, for what and where they spend the money.
Even in rare cases when such details are provided they are inaccurate, biased, vague, or are from untrustworthy sources.
So we naturally assume that most of the donations don’t go where they should.
Worry not, here’s an answer to your prayers
One of the most effective technological solutions is giving your donations to charitable organizations through cryptocurrency on Blockchain.
They are encrypted, secure, public, and can be traced. It uses Smart Contracts which allows the donors to trace where each of their penny went.
Now everyone can make a difference!