Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Addressing the Subject of Donations

My mother-in-law's mom, before she passed, used to receive a host of solicitations in the mail asking for her small contribution to their cause. Most of these solicitations included complimentary address labels, and feeling guilty about receiving them for free, Grammy would invariable send in a donation.

So far this week (just in time to send some cash and still be able to deduct it from our 2007 taxes), I've received two sets of mailing labels and a kitchen notepad. I'm not sending a donation for any of them.

I'm all for charitable donations and works. I'm doing a little something for Salvation Army this season, and I always make sure to donate to Harvester's, our local food pantry. But I firmly believe that Shane's and my money should be spent the way we decide, even for charitable donations.

When you receive something in the mail, clearly addressed to you, but that you didn't order or agree to purchase, then my understanding is the item is yours to keep. Items such as address labels, notepads, and magnets that come along with a solicitation fall into this category. Take time to decide if the cause is one you want to support monetarily. If not, keep the labels if you like and recycle the rest.

5 comments:

Donna said...

There are two that I donate to, St Judes Hospital(I love children) and St Joesephs Indian Reservation (School)(I'm part Cherokee). Thats it, by mail. As far as locally, Hubby and I are going to take a big goody bag to the Air Force Recruiting Offices (a forgotten bunch) and we do Toys for Tots.
I've never understood how those organizations make money, when they're constantly mailing out cards,stickers, notepads etc.?????

Tug said...

I totally agree. I volunteer, and give where I want to. I also request on our Christmas gift exchange that the person buying for me send it to the servicemen/women. It's what I want. ;-)

DadGuy said...

I am usually a bit angry at these types of solicitations. If they have all this money to spend on me for no guarantees, why should I give them any more to waste on non-charity (or advertising if you will) stuff.

Though I rarely get these types of things anyhow.

Annie Jones said...

Donna: I agree. With all the freebies, how are they staying afloat? If the donations are what pays for the freebies, then what's the point?

Tug: What a great idea! And if it's what you want, why not?

DadGuy: Although we have tried to get our name off the mailing lists, some of these invariably make it through. Especially this time of year, it seems. I still have address labels from last year. Maybe even the year before. I used to use them when I paid bills, but I do all of that online now.

TheWhiteSeal said...

I just found your blog, has been a great read! Just thought it may interest you to know, a while back i managed to find a british labels company who printed me some mailing labels for a really low price. If interested then it may be worth taking a look at their website.