Wednesday, March 07, 2007

How to benefit others

From kottke.org: "...if you really want to help fight AIDS in Africa, instead of buying that (RED) Gap t-shirt for which Gap will donate 50% of its profit to The Global Fund, buy a cheaper one at American Apparel and send the $13 difference to the Global Fund yourself."

I'd say Samaritan's Purse or Compassion are maybe even better causes.

4 Comments:

Blogger Heather Jamison said...

Splendid, Paul. I'm having somewhat of a cynical day here in western Kenya so I thought in line with the suggestion to donate straight to the organization and skip the over-priced T-shirt, I'd comment on a popular Christian concert I attended last year w/my two daughters. The group was at its height. Top of the charts. They sent one band member to Uganda to do a film piece on the LRA, etc. Showed the film piece. Said that they encouraged you to donate to World Vision after the concert.
After which, we left the concert and headed to the lobby and the World Vision volunteers were (I kid you not) . . .well, how do I say this gently - -- not from our planet. They were yelling, "Just give me your change!" And they didn't look like they had bathed. And this is N. Dallas (high-class town). Needless to say, everyone walked on by. Their table was empty.
Which led my 17 yr. old daughter to bring up the question --- why doesn't this Christian band who just charged us something like $45/ticket - just give (whoa - there's that big word) a percentage of each ticket to whatever relief organization they want to push.
I dunno. Maybe I should be a rock star then I could make those decisions. I just don't have the voice. :)

Wed Mar 07, 04:07:00 AM PST  
Blogger Dave Moody said...

Paul,
Great point. Bono and the (RED) campaign is def. a half loaf solution, or attmpt, which is arguably, better than no loaf. Its a way to leverage people's consumerism to do SOME good. I can feel like I'm helping someone by buying that red Nano. See, I'm philanthropic. I can fell good about my self-centeredness. Greed is good, to quote Gecko from the movie Wall Street. Its a brilliant move, and a savvy insight into the human heart.

btw, I don't think its 50%, but more like 10%- at least for Apple, which is the only company that really matters in my universe. But thats me.

But giving, is always the more efficeint and blessed way.

Wed Mar 07, 06:02:00 AM PST  
Blogger Heather Jamison said...

Wow. Just came across this.

http://adage.com/article?article_id=115287

Thought-provoking stuff.

Wed Mar 07, 11:55:00 AM PST  
Blogger Dave Moody said...

Heather,
Interesting story you linked to. The marketing is costing more than the benefits reaped.

I was wrong on the 10% for Apple. It's $10/Nano that's donated. Far less than 10% - a smidgen under 5%.

What would be cool would be for Apple, or Gap or Motoroala to say- ok, forget the (RED) thing. We're serious about being community and global partners- 5% of every product we sell will go to Bono's DATA or the Global Fund. And we'll restructure to see that this happens. And we won't raise our prices 5%. I don't know if this would work-boards, stockholders, etc... are who CEO's answer to.

And Heather's most recent post doesn't give one much confidence in anything but face to face, micro-loan projects.Too much leakage potential.

Or- like you said in your post. Just buy your t-shirt at target, and give the difference to Sam's Purse.

Wed Mar 07, 01:27:00 PM PST  

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