Author Topic: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis  (Read 4211 times)

merula

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1278
Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« on: September 03, 2015, 10:39:58 AM »
I'm sitting at my desk sobbing after reading the news story about the little boy who drowned trying to escape the war in Syria. I have a three year old. That could have been my child, if he had been born in different circumstances. He even looks like my son.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/02/shocking-image-of-drowned-syrian-boy-shows-tragic-plight-of-refugees

In the face of a problem as huge as the war and refugee crisis, I want to do something, but I don't know what. I could make a donation, but where? And I want to do more than give money.

I can afford it. I've saved over half my gross pay so far this year, and the amount I'm thinking of giving is less than 1% of my gross pay. (Though saying that makes it seem so small, like I should give more, because I can afford it.)

So, what do you think? Should I make a donation? Should I make my donation larger? Any suggestions on which charity? Any suggestions on other actions to take?

I'm a red panda

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8011
  • Location: United States
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2015, 10:43:30 AM »
Is it impulse spending: yes.
Does that mean you shouldn't do it: No.

Make the donation. Sorry I can't help with where. But I like Doctors without Borders for help in similar situations.

totoro

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2099
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2015, 10:56:29 AM »
Do it.  I'm looking into sponsoring a family.

sser

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 30
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2015, 11:06:37 AM »
I've given to IRC (International Rescue Committee) in the past: http://www.rescue.org/

They also have a good score on Charity Navigator, so a lot goes to the program: http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=3898#.Veh9F_lVhBc

As long as it's an organization that you can really support, I don't think that you'd regret making a donation.

merula

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1278
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2015, 11:10:57 AM »
totoro, are you sponsoring a family for immigration?

hunniebun

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 491
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2015, 12:14:15 PM »
I am an impulse doner too.  I am very senstive (especially to anything involving kids) or suffering in general.  But I think a better approach is to consider your values and what you want your money to do, and set up charitable giving that way...rather than seeing something and doing it impulsively.  Having said that...I still end up just giving on the odd occasion...I think it someone eases my guilt of over having so much and being so blessed when so many people are suffering so much daily.

Luck better Skill

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 283
  • Location: Virginia
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2015, 12:16:19 PM »
Merula,  make the donation you are comfortable with.  You can always make another donation at a later time if you decide too.

Totoro, How are you looking to host a family?  What country do you live in?  In the USA I think I would need to be blood relative to sponsor.

norabird

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8119
  • Location: Brooklyn NY
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2015, 02:40:44 PM »
Yes this is an impulse; but it is a good one. The entire refugee crisis is terrible but that photo...he truly could have been anyone's little boy, and had the bad luck to be born into a war-torn place. Everyone deserves to be safe and allowed to find a place where they can live a life with dignity. I think we should all give impulsively for these things if we can afford it.

Trudie

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1670
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2015, 02:44:37 PM »
Impulsive, but of the best kind.

Bad impulses are to spend money that you *THINK* is going to reduce suffering, which isn't really suffering at all but normal day-to-day inconveniences for people with first-world problems.

This is for real, and it's very sad.  I was in my co-worker's office tearing up talking about it at lunch.

As always, check out your charity first and just make sure the money will get where it can be used.


slugline

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1171
  • Location: Houston, TX USA
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2015, 03:04:23 PM »
As I'm in the US and became eligible to itemize charitable donations, it caused me to consider the "big picture" in regards to my personal finances. I try to start each year with an intended percentage of income I intend to donate and a roster of preferred charitable destinations. (One of those is an NGO working situations like the Syrian refugee crisis.)

I used to be a more impulsive contributor when I was younger, but as much as possible now I avoid donating based on emotional reaction to current events. There is no end to worthy causes, to be frank, and only you can decide the best use of each "little green employee." you have.

ArcadeStache

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 63
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2015, 03:15:19 PM »
That picture pretty much crushed my spirit today too and made me think of my son. I think I am going to look up a reputable charity with low overhead and donate. Those poor people need it more than I do. Like someone said, this is a positive and necessary impulse. Of course you can't give $ for every sad story, but this one really breaks my heart.

totoro

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2099
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2015, 08:35:06 PM »
Merula,  make the donation you are comfortable with.  You can always make another donation at a later time if you decide too.

Totoro, How are you looking to host a family?  What country do you live in?  In the USA I think I would need to be blood relative to sponsor.

I can't individually sponsor as I am not related.  I live in Canada.  I have to fit in one of these categories:

"Group of Five (G5): at least five Canadian citizens or permanent residents can initiate refugee sponsorship if they fulfill the criteria. Community Organization: incorporated or unincorporated organizations, associations or businesses based in the community where refugees are expected to settle. Sponsorship Agreement Holder (SAH): there are 85 different faith related and ethnic organizations that have sponsorship agreements with the Government of Canada (CIC)."

There is one SAH in my town and others in my province: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/refugees/sponsor/list-sponsors.asp

Things are changing quickly politically in Canada on this issue so some of the red tape may be eased soon.   I expect there will be more opportunities to get involved in a meaningful way soon - there is a move to have municipalities sponsor one or more families as well.   

I'm not sure yet what route I'll go - I've worked with the immigrant and refugee society in my town before so that is my first stop.

iamlindoro

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1520
    • The Earth Awaits
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2015, 08:39:38 PM »
This.  Is what money.  Is for.

Yes, you have an impulse compelling you to act, but remember that it's not impulses in general we are trying to suppress, but rather ones which are wasteful and which contribute nothing to our happiness or the world at large.  Decide what impact on your other goals is acceptable to you, then give up to, and including that limit.

You have my respect and thanks for your compassion.  Thank you.

Edit to add:  I made my donation here:

https://engage.rescue.org/donate/recurs-donate-now-here-humanity

After reading here:

http://mashable.com/2015/09/03/refugee-crisis-how-to-help/
« Last Edit: September 04, 2015, 08:48:18 PM by iamlindoro »

mozar

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3006
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2015, 09:21:02 PM »
Donate here: http://www.moas.eu/

merula

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1278
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2015, 09:26:11 PM »
Thanks everyone. I made the donation I was thinking of to Doctors Without Borders, and I've decided to give more, I just haven't decided where to give the second part.

I've mostly moved past grief (though seeing that photo will still make me teary) and onto anger. Mostly at myself. I've known for nearly a decade of people dying trying to reach Europe. I can pinpoint when I first heard about it: February 2006, when I visited the Canary Islands. I knew there was war in Syria. I knew about the terrible treatment of the Kurds and others by ISIS. And somehow, until I saw a little boy who reminded me so much of my son, it wasn't enough to spur me to act.

firewalker

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
Re: Is this impulse spending? Donation for the refugee crisis
« Reply #15 on: September 04, 2015, 09:36:39 PM »
Eritrea, Syria and Afghanastan are horror stories. The resulting issues in Europe are absolute chaos. Financially challenged countries like Greece and Hungary need hundreds of millions of dollars / euros to get a handle on their own problems let alone the current chaos.