Here is an etiquette question for you. Every year a good friend and I ‘adopt’ several needy families for the holidays. We provide new toys and clothing for the children and raise the money at a casual fundraiser with all our friends. We ask that friends give $20 for which they get a raffle ticket (with some really cool homemade raffle items like baked goods paired with bottles of wine, baskets filled with holiday items, etc.). I also provide a homemade gift for attendees to take home with them as a thank you for attending (cupcakes, chocolates etc.). The only thing I feel bad about is that attendees have to buy their own drinks but we do provide some appetizer platters and it is usually a really fun evening and we’ll raise about $1000 that we spend on the items for the needy families.
Here is a question from a few years ago as pertains to the event. I invited a close friend of mine (I should say that back then the attendance request for this event was only $10). He responded to the invite by saying that the charity was not one he believed in so he would not be attending.
I appreciate honesty but wouldn’t it be more polite to have said: “I’m busy that day, I can’t attend.” Or frankly, is $10 that big a deal when we are talking about helping needy children to have a Merry Christmas? If it were a money issue, I would completely respect that response (I’ve had friends who could not participate for that reason in the past and I invite them to come by anyway – the more the merrier) but I was so put off by this response that this friend and I didn’t talk for a few weeks. I’m completely over it now. He is a very good man and a really loyal friend, but I always wondered if I overreacted to his response. 0730-13<
You overreacted. You are running a charity event but it’s very personal in nature so any rejection of the charity may be viewed by you as a rejection of you. I have my charities I support and I may not have chosen to sponsor yours either simply because your charity is not within the sphere of charities I will fund that year. Due to the casual nature of your charitable work, there may be no accountability for how money is spent and I think people are well within their rights to choose where their charitable dollars are going based on fiscal oversight by third parties.