COMMENTARY: Charity shouldn’t be triggered by guilt

I received a package in the mail this week from the Heart and Stroke Foundation. In the package was an assortment of cards, a tote bag, pens and stickers. These articles are not cheap to produce, let alone the postage to send this care package in the mail. I’m probably one of hundreds of people who have received them. This is the second time one of these “care packages” has come to my home and it’s a troubling trend and a road charities shouldn’t be going down. While I’ve only received two, the second one was more elaborate than the first one.

Nobody is saying the Heart and Stroke Foundation is not a worthwhile charity, it’s one of the many of the other fine groups that raise money both locally and nationally. But to feel mentally pushed into a corner to make a donation is not the way to go about fundraising. I can’t, with any good conscience, use any of the materials that were given in the envelope. That relegates them to the garbage because receiving them in the mail, I’m essentially stuck with them. It’s also a waste for the charity, using some of the money it’s received to produce these goods – the administration costs that people so loudly denounce and scrutinize when they give to the charity of choice.

We have seen time and time again how Cornwall and SD&G is a giving community. Residents should feel free and feel good about giving to the charity of their choice. Guilting people into donating and foisting gifts on them is not the way to go.