Author Topic: Windfall Charitable Donation  (Read 5352 times)

libertarian4321

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Windfall Charitable Donation
« on: September 27, 2015, 08:31:28 AM »
On Saturday, we received a check for $1,293.37.

This was an "out of the blue" windfall we never anticipated or expected.  A class action law suite "refund" for a bad investment we'd made many many years ago, and had more or less forgotten about/written off. 

It was as close to "free money" as possible outside winning the lottery.

So my wife and I figured we may as well donate it.  But we couldn't agree who to give it to.  Basically, it came down to 1)  donate to animals- my preference (Humane Society, Animal Defense League, etc) or Humans (the wife's preference- most likely the local Food Bank).

We donate to both regularly, but her argument was that donations to Food Banks are low in the late summer/early fall because people wait until the Holidays to donate (which is true, I think).

My argument was that puppies are cuter than humans, so they should get preference.

So, what do you think.  Humans or animals?

Both are good (and efficient) charities, I'm just curious as to how most folks here think.  My wife loves animals, but thinks I'm weird for favoring dogs over humans.

I don't want to sway your opinion, but if you choose humans, you may be signing a death warrant for this guy:



I only used that unfair bit of propaganda because I think most humans would naturally tend to side with my wife. :)

iris lily

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2015, 08:55:45 AM »
 
Oh honey, I never donate to humans, I don't like 'em. It is always animal organizations for me, or old buildings. Yep, animals and old buildings get my money because they are helpless at the hands of humans.

And food banks, ack. The short version of my food bank story:

Once I dug 70 cans of food out of a dumpster, put there by the Section 8 family who had received it all free form a food bank. This is how useful and appreciated your donations are.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2015, 09:00:28 AM by iris lily »

Cpa Cat

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2015, 08:59:57 AM »
I vote for animals. Humans, in general, do terrible things to animals - and they deserve reparations. As you said, there are plenty enough humans who only think humans are worthwhile. Then they throw animals away like garbage.

Our local humane society recently got a dog in that was hit by a car and left to die by the side of the road. While they were treating her, they discovered that her face and body were riddled with buckshot. A puppy never shot anyone in the face, nor did a puppy ever run anyone over with a car and leave them to die - so puppies clearly win.

firewalker

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2015, 09:35:38 AM »
Go to a few food banks and ask if they know of a hard working single mom that visits them out of a true need. Give her an envelope of cash anonymously.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2015, 10:43:08 AM »
Humans.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2015, 12:29:52 PM »
Animals, for 3 reasons:

1 – objectively, the donation will go further in terms of # of individuals helped over a longer period of time.  $35 bucks buys a big bag of dog food that can feed 2-3 dogs for a month+. $35 bucks worth of food might not even feed 1 person for a week, let alone a family.

2 – from a moral standpoint, animals are FAR more vulnerable and displaced in US society than even the poorest of our human poor. Our poorest have shelters, electronic benefits transfer/food stamps/WIC, subsidized housing/utilities, Medicaid,and emergency rooms. Their poorest are euthanized by the millions by the very shelters that are supposed to protect them, or left to die on the streets. Many people seeking food assistance receive or qualify for state or federal benefits. If you are concerned about disbursing funds to the neediest group, it seems to make sense to go for the group that has the fewest benefits/options available.

3 – innocence – as someone who worked with the inner city urban poor, I know that while many were certainly victims of circumstance, the fact is that most of the people I worked with ended up in their situations due to a combination of poor circumstance AND repeated unhealthy decisions despite available resources. If you are at all concerned about your donation going to a truly "innocent" party, then animals are the safest bet. There isn’t any worry about supporting someone who is actively choosing to pursue drugs, willfully ignore the availability of free birth control, or other questionable lifestyle decisions while taking advantage of your donation.
« Last Edit: September 27, 2015, 01:00:44 PM by little_brown_dog »

TheDude

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2015, 12:42:38 PM »
You both have a say half and half!

Allie

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2015, 03:24:20 PM »
I work and volunteer for a non profit agency that helps kids and families.  While I will be the first to agree that some of the adults we work with aren't the nicest human beings and that human beings can be awful, everything that happens to abused and abandoned animals happens to children and babies too.  My blood boils when I'm watching tv with friends and one of those abused animal commercials comes on or everyone reposts the picture of the dog covered in scars on Facebook and everyone coos about saving the animals. 

I can't post pictures of the 6 year old who was covered in scars because she was used as an ash tray for years or the little girl who was used as "payment" for her parents drug habit or the boy with the broken clavicle who explained that it was his fault his dad threw him against a wall. 

A donation the the food bank could help support the relative who agrees to foster one of those kids or the soup kitchen that makes kits they can take home after school so they will have a healthy dinner.  A donation to the local emergency shelter will provide them a safe place to live for even a brief time.  A donation to the boys and girls club supports after school care and can ensure there is at least one caring adult in their lives. 

I feel for the animals, but ensuring that the young innocent victims of others poor choices are supported and fostered and able to grow up in a healthier environment will have a much more substantial impact on our society and your community than paying for the fostering and feeding of a cat.

Cathy

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2015, 03:27:40 PM »
On Saturday, we received a check for $1,293.37. ... A class action law suite "refund" for a bad investment we'd made many many years ago, and had more or less forgotten about/written off.

Does this change your opinion of class action lawsuits?

lakemom

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2015, 05:04:48 PM »
So why can't you each give 1/2 the windfall to the charity of your choice.  This does not seem like a all or nothing choice to me!  Its not like you are discussing the disposition of $10 but for over a grand.

kpd905

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2015, 06:12:02 PM »
You should probably go half and half.

But I'd go either animals or nature.

purple monkey

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #11 on: September 27, 2015, 06:50:08 PM »
Go to a few food banks and ask if they know of a hard working single mom that visits them out of a true need. Give her an envelope of cash anonymously.

+1

purple monkey

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2015, 06:51:30 PM »
I work and volunteer for a non profit agency that helps kids and families.  While I will be the first to agree that some of the adults we work with aren't the nicest human beings and that human beings can be awful, everything that happens to abused and abandoned animals happens to children and babies too.  My blood boils when I'm watching tv with friends and one of those abused animal commercials comes on or everyone reposts the picture of the dog covered in scars on Facebook and everyone coos about saving the animals. 

I can't post pictures of the 6 year old who was covered in scars because she was used as an ash tray for years or the little girl who was used as "payment" for her parents drug habit or the boy with the broken clavicle who explained that it was his fault his dad threw him against a wall. 

A donation the the food bank could help support the relative who agrees to foster one of those kids or the soup kitchen that makes kits they can take home after school so they will have a healthy dinner.  A donation to the local emergency shelter will provide them a safe place to live for even a brief time.  A donation to the boys and girls club supports after school care and can ensure there is at least one caring adult in their lives. 

I feel for the animals, but ensuring that the young innocent victims of others poor choices are supported and fostered and able to grow up in a healthier environment will have a much more substantial impact on our society and your community than paying for the fostering and feeding of a cat.

This is one of the best posts I have ever read.  I know it is so sad, but really focuses on where the need is.

Shinplaster

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #13 on: September 27, 2015, 07:18:03 PM »
Could you donate to an organization that trains guide dogs?   That way it benefits both animals and humans.

Villanelle

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2015, 07:38:54 PM »
I'd probably split it in half so we could each donate to the cause of our choice. 

In lieu of that, I'd research to see if I could find a solid charity that benefits both.  Perhaps a program that teaches those without many marketable skills to work with animals, for example.  Or a program at your local zoo that both creates jobs and helps endangered species.  Something along those lines. 

music lover

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #15 on: September 27, 2015, 08:31:59 PM »
I work and volunteer for a non profit agency that helps kids and families.  While I will be the first to agree that some of the adults we work with aren't the nicest human beings and that human beings can be awful, everything that happens to abused and abandoned animals happens to children and babies too.  My blood boils when I'm watching tv with friends and one of those abused animal commercials comes on or everyone reposts the picture of the dog covered in scars on Facebook and everyone coos about saving the animals. 

I can't post pictures of the 6 year old who was covered in scars because she was used as an ash tray for years or the little girl who was used as "payment" for her parents drug habit or the boy with the broken clavicle who explained that it was his fault his dad threw him against a wall. 

A donation the the food bank could help support the relative who agrees to foster one of those kids or the soup kitchen that makes kits they can take home after school so they will have a healthy dinner.  A donation to the local emergency shelter will provide them a safe place to live for even a brief time.  A donation to the boys and girls club supports after school care and can ensure there is at least one caring adult in their lives. 

I feel for the animals, but ensuring that the young innocent victims of others poor choices are supported and fostered and able to grow up in a healthier environment will have a much more substantial impact on our society and your community than paying for the fostering and feeding of a cat.

Well said. Those who value puppies over children need to take a good look at their values.

Sailor Sam

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #16 on: September 27, 2015, 08:50:33 PM »
I think it's really awesome that you're going to donate the whole windfall. No matter what you and your wife choose, you're improving your hometown.

I cast my vote for some sort of split. If the check was coming to me, I'd split it 4 ways: local food shelter, St Jude's, alma mater, family. 

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2015, 11:31:27 PM »
I work and volunteer for a non profit agency that helps kids and families.  While I will be the first to agree that some of the adults we work with aren't the nicest human beings and that human beings can be awful, everything that happens to abused and abandoned animals happens to children and babies too.  My blood boils when I'm watching tv with friends and one of those abused animal commercials comes on or everyone reposts the picture of the dog covered in scars on Facebook and everyone coos about saving the animals. 

I can't post pictures of the 6 year old who was covered in scars because she was used as an ash tray for years or the little girl who was used as "payment" for her parents drug habit or the boy with the broken clavicle who explained that it was his fault his dad threw him against a wall. 

A donation the the food bank could help support the relative who agrees to foster one of those kids or the soup kitchen that makes kits they can take home after school so they will have a healthy dinner.  A donation to the local emergency shelter will provide them a safe place to live for even a brief time.  A donation to the boys and girls club supports after school care and can ensure there is at least one caring adult in their lives. 

I feel for the animals, but ensuring that the young innocent victims of others poor choices are supported and fostered and able to grow up in a healthier environment will have a much more substantial impact on our society and your community than paying for the fostering and feeding of a cat.

Thank you. People are more important than animals and there are lots of vulnerable people in bad situations.

Bert The Turtle

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2015, 08:37:39 AM »
I'm going to put in a plug for considering causes supported by the Effective Altruism movement.  It's essentially a movement to get the best "bang for your buck" when donating to charity.  Here's a decent rundown of four areas that come up often in EA discussions:
http://effective-altruism.com/ea/4k/four_focus_areas_of_effective_altruism/

In your case, I'd recommend splitting the cash between something like mosquito nets (to reduce human suffering) and the Humane League (to reduce animal suffering).

okits

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #19 on: September 28, 2015, 09:39:10 AM »
Allie and little_brown_dog's appeals both reached me. Go half and half on an animal charity and one that specifically benefits disadvantaged children.  I hear all the complaints about people, but a donation to humans is worthwhile if it breaks the cycle of poverty or protects the truly vulnerable.

former player

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #20 on: September 28, 2015, 10:05:56 AM »
Could you donate to an organization that trains guide dogs?   That way it benefits both animals and humans.
I don't know how it is in the USA, but here in the UK Guide Dogs for the Blind already has more money than it can spend, because most people going blind are the elderly who can't manage/don't want a big dog to look after.

Shinplaster

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #21 on: September 28, 2015, 10:20:18 AM »
Could you donate to an organization that trains guide dogs?   That way it benefits both animals and humans.
I don't know how it is in the USA, but here in the UK Guide Dogs for the Blind already has more money than it can spend, because most people going blind are the elderly who can't manage/don't want a big dog to look after.

We're in Canada (Ontario), and I don't think that's the case here.  We have a training facility a couple of hours away, and they are constantly strapped for funds (as far as I know, anyway).

Therapy dog training?   Again, they use a lot of rescue dogs, so it helps both humans and animals.   I also agree with those saying to split it in half, and each party donate to their favourite charities/organizations.

little_brown_dog

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #22 on: September 28, 2015, 03:08:58 PM »
Allie - i agree children are truly innocent victims of abuse and poverty.   i think many of us who prefer animal charities are saying that there is no cosmic truth indicating that humans are intrinsically more valuable than animals or vice versa. the fact is, we are all naturally inclined to think humans are more valuable simply because we are human ourselves, and our egos want to believe we and our loved ones are somehow special. for centuries men thought males were more valuable than females, whites thought they were more valuable than blacks, certain religions think their believers are better than non believers, etc. thinking humans are inherently more valuable than animals is simply an extension of this type of bias towards one's own group, and it causes immense suffering for those designated as "less than".

along the lines of child based charities -what about a diaper bank? you'll know who is definitely benefiting and babies are alike to animals in the innocence department. plus, your donation would buy a lot of diapers.

Allie

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Re: Windfall Charitable Donation
« Reply #23 on: September 28, 2015, 05:25:56 PM »
Allie - i agree children are truly innocent victims of abuse and poverty.   i think many of us who prefer animal charities are saying that there is no cosmic truth indicating that humans are intrinsically more valuable than animals or vice versa. the fact is, we are all naturally inclined to think humans are more valuable simply because we are human ourselves, and our egos want to believe we and our loved ones are somehow special. for centuries men thought males were more valuable than females, whites thought they were more valuable than blacks, certain religions think their believers are better than non believers, etc. thinking humans are inherently more valuable than animals is simply an extension of this type of bias towards one's own group, and it causes immense suffering for those designated as "less than".

along the lines of child based charities -what about a diaper bank? you'll know who is definitely benefiting and babies are alike to animals in the innocence department. plus, your donation would buy a lot of diapers.

I am sure that everyone reading these posts has taken the time to examine their lives and beliefs at some point to determine how they feel about their place in society and our ecosystem.  The purpose of my post was just to be sure that there was some awareness that the shame felt by victims and the privacy rights afforded children creates a vacuum of information about the realities faced by the vulnerable among us even in our most safe, stable, and comfortable communities.  That lack of information can lead us to believe that these sorts of atrocities are reserved for animals, the impoverished in far flung unstable nations, or a small number of unfortunate victims of sensationalized violence and that it is simply not the case.

There is no universal truth out there.  If you can honestly say that you value the safety and well being of your loved ones at the same level as that of someone you don't know or an animal, then I respect your convictions.  Personally, I would choose the safety and well being of a child, particularly my own child, over a stranger or an animal every time. 

My family and the children in my community who I have helped may not be special in the cosmic sense, but they are special to me.