Author Topic: "I am unable to attend..."  (Read 6396 times)

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fnygrl

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"I am unable to attend..."
« on: June 09, 2011, 04:47:10 PM »
Hello Etiquette Hell Forum~

I have a quick question for you.  An acquaintance of mine is a Chair Member for a charity in which every year they host a benefit dinner for St.Jude Children's Research Hospital.  Tickets are $150.00 each/$300.00 per couple.  My husband and I in no way have that kind of money, or sadly any spare money, to attend the event.  The RSVP card asks you to select one of the three options listed:

$150.00 per person
$300.00 per couple
or
I am unable to attend.  Please accept my donation of (fill in the blank) to help the children of St. Jude.

What do I do?  Check off I'm unable to attend and leave the dollar amount blank?  Write a zero?  Don't reply at all? 

Thank you, in advance, for your thoughts and replies!


Harriet Jones

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2011, 04:48:13 PM »
You don't need to reply.

Luci

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2011, 05:14:53 PM »
That tactic burns me to no end!

I treat is as any other RSVP. I mark the third option and leave the amount blank.

One of my places of work tried that when I had not money, and later collection for a charity I did not support in any way, so it has happened to me.

As I was not the only one who did that and I didn't care about career advancement, I got no flack about it.

Mikayla

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2011, 05:19:21 PM »
Wow.  That's kind of hinky.

I agree this doesn't require a response, but if you want to send one, I don't see anything wrong with checking the third and writing in zero.  You're providing the info they want in the way they want it provided.  I wonder if St. Jude is aware it's being sent out like this?

HeebyJeebyLeebee

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2011, 05:20:06 PM »
Yup, either no response or check of the decline option, but leave the donation line blank.
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Animala

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2011, 05:29:55 PM »
I would decline and mark the blank zero.  If you leave it blank you might hear back from them because you "forgot" to write in your donation amount.

kckgirl

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2011, 05:37:55 PM »
My boss gets these a lot. I circle "I am unable to attend" instead of marking a checkblock and leave the donation amount blank.
Maryland

LazyDaisy

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2011, 07:08:31 PM »
I work for a nonprofit. We absolutely don't expect everyone to respond to these types of "invitations" at all. Don't think of this as a personal invitation which requires an RSVP, think of it as an advertisement for an event and throw it away; similar to if the California Philharmonic sends you an "invitation" to buy season tickets to their performances. If you don't want to attend, don't respond at all. If you mark the box "I am unable to attend. Please accept my donation of (fill in the blank) to help the children of St. Jude" you will in all likelihood get a phone call from a fundraiser to verify what amount you intend to give and they will undoubtedly give you the hard sell of why they need your support. Also, if you respond, you also will probably remain on the list for future mailings. I know that for us, after 3-5* non-responses names are dropped off our mail list. If you are personal friends with someone at the organization, try asking him/her to please not send any future mailings to you.

*I actually don't know what the magic number is, but there is a point at which we give up because it costs us money to print and mail the piece and we only want to send to those we think might attend/give.
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katycoo

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2011, 10:59:37 PM »
Invitations that require a purchase to attend do not require a no rsvp if you are not attending.  Chuck it away :)

fnygrl

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #9 on: June 11, 2011, 07:38:49 PM »
Thank you all very much for your replies and advice!  I have opted to not reply with an RSVP. 

Thanks again!!

Luci

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2011, 09:52:37 PM »
Our invitations were for a tea from the school staff! So I had to answer.

The charity was one I will not support, but they filled in $2.00 for me and donated it in my name so they would have 100% participation. If I had the backbone I have now, I would have protested. As it was, I was angry but pretty much laughed at how lame the whole thing was.

This must have been different from the OP's situation and the ones the rest of you are discussing.

kherbert05

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Re: "I am unable to attend..."
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2011, 06:34:02 PM »
Our invitations were for a tea from the school staff! So I had to answer.

The charity was one I will not support, but they filled in $2.00 for me and donated it in my name so they would have 100% participation. If I had the backbone I have now, I would have protested. As it was, I was angry but pretty much laughed at how lame the whole thing was.

This must have been different from the OP's situation and the ones the rest of you are discussing.

We had a similar tactic for a charity. The idea was if we showed 100% participation then we would have a better chance getting a grant from this charity. I forwarded a report that showed that most of the money collected by this charity was going to overhead not the people they were helping along with my $0.50 donation so that we had 100%.

Apparently other employees also registered complaints, now we are given a bunch of different charities. One gives grants only to our district's teachers and has very little overhead. So I give a significant amount to them.

My principal has learned that if I say, "No, I refuse to do business with X" I will not be moving from that position. If pushed I will show you exactly why I don't do business with group X.
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