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D.A.R.E. Informative - D.A.R.E. Charity - What they get!

Review by Mario The Great on 2007-12-13
USA -- Here's a bit of information for you. How many times have you seen 2 people from D.A.R.E. in front of Kroger, Safeway, Kmart, Target, etc.? The are usually impeccably dressed and always want to sell you some toy, coupon book, T-Shirt or some other ware? Well, last week I had the chance to talk with a representative. Here's what I found out. The price of the coupon book that was being sold was $20.00. Truly a fair price for what you receive. I did ask the lady how much of it went to D.A.R.E. She replied that approximately 95% of the proceeds went to the organization. I was just about to hand her my $20.00 when I looked at the front of the book and noticed that in 8 point font, it clearly stated, "$0.50 of the cost of this book goes to D.A.R.E." (Actually it was worded a bit different but it was very similar) After I asked her what that meant, she said that IN ADDITION to the 95%, they also get 50 cents. I asked if she was a volunteer and she said no. Hmmmm, if you do the math, each book nets the seller 50 cents. That's A LOT of coupon books that you would have to sell to make minimum wage. Sorry guys, but this is the last time I support D.A.R.E. and several other charities.

It seems like 99.5% of the cash we give Fraternal Order of Police, Firefighters Union, D.A.R.E., D.A.V., etc., goes to overhead and personally, that's enough for me to never patronize them.
Comments:7 Replies - Latest reply on 2007-12-15
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-12-14:
Quite a few charities are like that. I read in the paper yesterday that some organizations that collect for our veterans spend very little of that on the vets. There was one, a major one, who passes along a measly 1% of all donations. The CEO gets a nice 6-figure salary and his wife gets almost as much. They raised $74 million in 2006 yet don't have to account for where the funds go.
Posted by chemman on 2007-12-14:
It annoys me that so much of the money collected goes to overhead and paying ridiculous salaries. While I understand there is a lot that goes into collecting and distributing for a charity, I think that people that work for them have made a choice to work there and should understand that the bulk of the money collected should go to the people that need it most. Here are some good resources for checking out a charity before giving money to them;

www.CharityNavigator.org
www.CharityWatch.org

Thanks for the helpful review Mario!
Posted by tnchuck100 on 2007-12-14:
Want to see your charitable contribution really mean something?

Just spend a little time at a shopping center or even a fast food restaurant. Through careful observation you should be able to find someone who deserves help. Help that family. 100% of you donation makes it to the intended target.

The only down side is it's not tax deductible. But at least your not lining the pockets of some already-rich administarter.
Posted by FoggyOne on 2007-12-14:
I used to live in a city in New Mexico. Everyone it seems got called to contribute to a Police Fund. Sounds good, but it was a contractor doing the calling. How much did the police fund get? 15 cents of every dollar contributed. The only contributions I give anymore are directly to the volunteer fire department, not through some slick 3rd party.
Posted by Sparticus on 2007-12-14:
This is why I stopped giving to United Way back when I worked for a company that brought them in every year. Their overhead wasn't great. Then I learned how much their CEO was making and gave up on them completely.
Posted by Mario The Great on 2007-12-14:
As the years have gone by, I've given less and less to all charities. When I see someone on the street, I'll go to McD's and buy a value meal, head back and give it to them. I think the fact that I see someone actually benefiting from my gift makes me feel better than giving it to someone over the phone. In a time of need, I'm just irritated that tons of organizations give very little back to their community. Have you ever seen those big red boxes on some parking lot with CLOTHING, SHOES, TOYS, etc., painted on it? I'll bet that the organizations the pick it up end up sorting through it and sending it to their outlet stores for sale. Is Goodwill a FOR PROFIT organization? Grrrr...well enough of the soapbox. Check out CHEMMAN's link. It provided a heck of a lot of insight into the organizations.
Posted by runaway on 2007-12-15:
There are great local charities out there: do some research into your local community nonprofits and help the ones that touch your heart. You can ask about where your donations go, how many paid staff members they have, etc.
I give to a local handicapped riding therapy nonprofit. Because they're smaller and local, I can actually request exactly what area I want my money to go to. It's still tax deductable, and I feel better knowing what my money means to them and exactly where it goes.

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