Monday, October 25, 2010

Individual Donating : Due Diligence

I'm pleased to say that I've had a couple of submissions so far for the computer and monitor I plan to donate, so someone will definitely be getting use of them, which are currently sitting in my closet.  I don't typically give away expensive stuff but I haven't given back in a while: this is one way to do it.

I'm trying this as an experiment in 'do-diligence' in making the kind of smallish donation of the sort that an individual such as me may find him or herself able to make.  It's more important to me to have some sense that a donation I make is actually in use for some worthy end than it is for me to too-closely dictate what the end is, which ultimately is none of my business, within bounds (that I've dictated a use at all--i.e., educational or for social or economic work--is more a statement about what I think of as my own area of competence, in which I may judge.  I have no useful knowledge or instinct about rocket science, for instance.)  

I also feel more confidence making a donation to someone who'd not feel put out by being asked to take a half hour to describe their goals and their means for achieving them.  Someone once said to me that she thought I would give my "shirt off my back" to someone also willing to help themselves but wouldn't "lift a finger" for someone who isn't.  This was a roughly correct observation.  My liberality (sic) is real but not-naive, which may confuse some of my friends, especially to the left of me.

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