Author Topic: Fundraising Etiquette  (Read 4938 times)

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jimithing

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Fundraising Etiquette
« on: August 09, 2010, 08:59:02 PM »
A friend of mine was recently doing a fundraiser for a sick child in her local area. They had a big fundraising day, and my husband and I participated in a couple of the efforts.

I looked to see if they posted how much money they ended up raising, and I haven't seen anything. She posted some pics from the event, today on FB, and I asked her how much they raised. Her response was, "A lot!" It appears they aren't going to disclose the actual amount of money.

I have done a fundraiser myself, and have participated in several as well, and the amount is always disclosed. And in fact, a lot of places usually have a running tally when they receive donations.

For some reason, them not stating how much money was raised sort of bothers me for some reason, but I'm not sure if it should or not. I guess I feel like with fundraisers, there should be a lot of transparency with them, so maybe this is why it bothers me?

Is there sort of an unspoken etiquette rule that you should disclose the amount raised? Or does it not matter at all?

MaggieB

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2010, 09:05:09 PM »
I can see your point, and I do agree that fundraisers should be as transparent as possible, and if she had been fundraising for an organization, I would totally agree.  But I can sort of see how this might be a little different because the money is going to a private family.  Your friend may not want to put them on the spot by posting on Facebook "Hey, I just handed the Jones family a check for $20,000!"  Even though the family is receiving some charity, they should still be able to keep their personal finances private.  I'm assuming that no one disputes that they needed the money and will spend it the way it was intended.

jimithing

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2010, 09:07:04 PM »
I can see your point, and I do agree that fundraisers should be as transparent as possible, and if she had been fundraising for an organization, I would totally agree.  But I can sort of see how this might be a little different because the money is going to a private family.  Your friend may not want to put them on the spot by posting on Facebook "Hey, I just handed the Jones family a check for $20,000!"  Even though the family is receiving some charity, they should still be able to keep their personal finances private.  I'm assuming that no one disputes that they needed the money and will spend it the way it was intended.

This makes sense. I guess I realized that it makes me uncomfortable because I wonder if they are hiding anything. I trust them and her, but it just doesn't sit right with me. But what you said does make more sense.

ETA- When I say "they", I mean people in general. It's not my experience to not disclose how much was raised, so my first instinct was that it seemed off to me.
« Last Edit: August 09, 2010, 09:15:12 PM by jimithing »

BettyDraper

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2010, 09:08:04 PM »
I can see your point, and I do agree that fundraisers should be as transparent as possible, and if she had been fundraising for an organization, I would totally agree.  But I can sort of see how this might be a little different because the money is going to a private family.  Your friend may not want to put them on the spot by posting on Facebook "Hey, I just handed the Jones family a check for $20,000!"  Even though the family is receiving some charity, they should still be able to keep their personal finances private.  I'm assuming that no one disputes that they needed the money and will spend it the way it was intended.

I agree with this.  Unless you have reason to believe your donation was misused or didn't make it to the family, what's the difference?

shhh its me

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2010, 09:15:55 PM »
I can see your point, and I do agree that fundraisers should be as transparent as possible, and if she had been fundraising for an organization, I would totally agree.  But I can sort of see how this might be a little different because the money is going to a private family.  Your friend may not want to put them on the spot by posting on Facebook "Hey, I just handed the Jones family a check for $20,000!"  Even though the family is receiving some charity, they should still be able to keep their personal finances private.  I'm assuming that no one disputes that they needed the money and will spend it the way it was intended.

This. 

ShadesOfGrey

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2010, 09:39:34 PM »
I agree with you Jimithing.  It feels funny/off somehow.  The above explanation makes sense, but I'm not sure it's an adequate enough one for me to feel it's justified to keep it private still, kwim?
Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning. - Maya Angelou

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kareng57

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2010, 10:24:26 PM »
I agree with some PPs that it's a bit different when it's a private-family situation.

Example - maybe it's announced that they raised $ 10,000.  Then a few days later, people see a roofing-company's truck in the driveway.  If it's fairly common knowledge in the area that that's about the sum of a re-roofing job - some busybodies are going to jump to the conclusion that the family used the funds for a new roof, as opposed to services needed by the sick child.  It's simply a more transparent situation.

shhh its me

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #7 on: August 09, 2010, 10:34:41 PM »
  I can tell you (going to be very vague on the whos and why here) when a  distant relative was the beneficiary of this sort of private fund-raising there was  a trust set up relative couldn't just write a check for whatever they wanted (they were over 18) and a 3rd party did the accounting.

Slartibartfast

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #8 on: August 09, 2010, 10:59:09 PM »
Honestly, even if they did announce "We raised $5,620!" or whatever, it wouldn't be any more transparent - you're not going over their financial statements, or looking at their tax receipts, so you wouldn't know whether the number was correct.  (Did they actually raise $5,640 and spend $20 on a newspaper ad?  Raise $10,000 and just decide to only use half of it for the original project?  Raise $150 but want everyone to feel like they've done something good?)

ShadesOfGrey

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2010, 12:20:00 AM »
  I can tell you (going to be very vague on the whos and why here) when a  distant relative was the beneficiary of this sort of private fund-raising there was  a trust set up relative couldn't just write a check for whatever they wanted (they were over 18) and a 3rd party did the accounting.

What a great method!
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I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - Maya Angelou

Surianne

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2010, 12:39:21 AM »
It wouldn't occur to me that I should know the final total, or that it was required in any way to be disclosed.

sparklestar

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2010, 01:51:02 AM »
I was thinking of another reason why the final total wasn't disclosed - maybe the event raised lots of money but the profit wasn't that great. Last year my mum was on a fundraising committee for a big event for international charity - this took months of planning, big swanky event and the overall profit was just 3,000. Announcing the total raised was 1,000,000 and then handing the Jones a cheque for 3,000 would be extremely odd. Just another view.

Granny Takes a Trip

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2010, 06:19:53 AM »
It wouldn't occur to me that I should know the final total, or that it was required in any way to be disclosed.

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baglady

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2010, 07:19:07 AM »
I agree with some PPs that it's a bit different when it's a private-family situation.

Example - maybe it's announced that they raised $ 10,000.  Then a few days later, people see a roofing-company's truck in the driveway.  If it's fairly common knowledge in the area that that's about the sum of a re-roofing job - some busybodies are going to jump to the conclusion that the family used the funds for a new roof, as opposed to services needed by the sick child.  It's simply a more transparent situation.

But what if the family desperately *needed* a new roof, had budgeted/taken out a loan for it, then had to use that money for the child's medical bills? Another scenario is that the roofing company is doing it for free.

A friend of a friend died unexpectedly a few weeks ago. A fund has been set up to help the family, and a local business gave a *very* large sum of money to this fund (the business didn't toot its horn about this, I only found out because I'm a friend of the friend of the family). The main purpose of the fund is for the kids' education, but their home also desperately needs work, and that's where a large part of the big donation is going. It's none of anyone's business.
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Amava

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Re: Fundraising Etiquette
« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2010, 08:14:18 AM »
I agree with some PPs that it's a bit different when it's a private-family situation.

Example - maybe it's announced that they raised $ 10,000.  Then a few days later, people see a roofing-company's truck in the driveway.  If it's fairly common knowledge in the area that that's about the sum of a re-roofing job - some busybodies are going to jump to the conclusion that the family used the funds for a new roof, as opposed to services needed by the sick child.  It's simply a more transparent situation.

But what if the family desperately *needed* a new roof, had budgeted/taken out a loan for it, then had to use that money for the child's medical bills? Another scenario is that the roofing company is doing it for free.

A friend of a friend died unexpectedly a few weeks ago. A fund has been set up to help the family, and a local business gave a *very* large sum of money to this fund (the business didn't toot its horn about this, I only found out because I'm a friend of the friend of the family). The main purpose of the fund is for the kids' education, but their home also desperately needs work, and that's where a large part of the big donation is going. It's none of anyone's business.

I agree with you! Plus, it's not exactly good for a sick child to live in a house where it rains in or where the mold is all over the place!