We donate regularly to various charities and receive several begging letters from others every week, and have had as many as five on the same day. I suppose our name and address has been widely circulated. The ones which really make me angry are those which send out 'free gifts' which our (and your) donations have paid for, or like the letter which arrived this morning, enclosing actual coins. The envelope bore the message: 'Please use the pennies inside to help us bring Peace and Joy to Africa's poorest children'. Short of taking them down to our Oxfam shop I wasn't sure how else I could comply with the request. I decided to mark the envelope 'Return to Sender' so that they could use the pennies more wisely, but don't hold out much hope.
In the past we have received a small blanket, a pair of towelling slippers, an umbrella, and a mug, none of which we wanted so took to a charity shop. Writing letters to these charities and making lengthy phonecalls explaining that we think these practices waste valuable donations seems to have no effect at all. It must cost so much to process one of these ridiculous campaigns - we certainly aren't the only household to receive such letters. How dare these people waste precious funds while the suffering goes on.
Rant over - I just had to get it off my chest!
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