Guest post by billybob
Stop giving to charity unless you research what the charity you are giving to is doing with your money. People who give to just any organization with its hand out asking for a donation are hurting those who need charity. Con men and thieves are looking for an easy buck and armed with a few pictures of starving children, can divert large amounts of money intended for those in need to their own bank accounts. Smart giving protects those in need by foiling the efforts of grifters and hucksters to steal the money intended for the needy and helps by diverting money to respectable organizations.
Recently a cashier at a Longo’s supermarket asked me to donate $2.00 to Toonies for Tummies. I had never heard of this charity, and I fought off the social guilt and said “no thanks.” At home, I went online to find out about the charity; it is a part of the Grocery Foundation. The website was basic, and I searched it for financial information, but none was available. Looking for answers, I went online and found Charity Intelligence Canada which had information on the Grocery Foundation.
The Grocery Foundation stopped making its financial information available after 2012, a year in which almost 60% of the funds received went into overhead. It’s no wonder the Grocery Foundation no longer publishes its financials: maybe its numbers have gotten worse. The foundation has a rating of C- on Charity Intelligence Canada, which makes me wonder why a reputable company like Longo’s collects for them. I was glad I said no because only about 40% my $2.00 would have done any good, and giving $2.00 to a street person probably would do more good. I wonder what percentage of donations was used in 2015 for overhead; was it to embarrassing to publish?
So many stores ask for money at the cash register now that they should be required to post a sign with the name of the organization they are collecting for, a short description of the charity and a summary of the financials. The provincial government should set standards for stores collecting for charities, so that the millions of dollars collected for those in need do not end up paying for luxury cars and exotic vacations. I do not want to put fuel in a private jet.
Note: In the United States, charities are so poorly regulated they are second only to religion as a means to get rich quick.