1/06/2006

charities are now big business

why are charities now a big business here? can we afford to do away with the commercialisation of charities? long long time ago, charities were collecting money in 5c and 10c. today that kind of collection is frown upon. wasteful, unsophisticated, untalented enterprise. what we shall do is commercialisation, beg in a big way, beg with style, employ super talents and superstars to do the job. never mind about money. pay them well or you get peanuts with monkeys. so we have today big charities as big business. the objectives are now different. pull out every trick in the marketing bag and get the money to come in. that is the objective. why can't charities survive with a few cents here and there? why must charities raised big money? why is money not enough in charities? why helping the helpless is now so expensive? why is there a need for such a massive effort to raise so much money? doing an ivf cost between $7,000 to $20,000. a new drug for heart patient cost $6,000 a month. it is called the behtahan therapy. oops it is called the bosentan therapy. a dialysis cost $180 per treatment and a patient needs to be treated about 8 to 10 times a month. let me see, about $1,500 to $1,800, in order to be alive. the advances in medical science, in medication, have kept many people alive. the high cost of medication and treatment have also kept many people alive. people need money to buy time to live. and these costs are so high. looks like there is no other alternative but to set up professional fund raising organisations.

8 comments:

Speedwing said...

Yep, you are so right. Charities are big money spinning machines these days. The bigger the machines to more you have to pay those you appoint to run them. It is not true these days that charities are set up with the main objective of helping the poor and the less fortunate. It is more like they are there as a business. I must also say that the spin-offs from all these charity business do end up helping those of us who happen to need assistance and help. That part I agree and like, but the commercialisation of charities appears to me that somehow we have lost sight of the main objectives of the whole exercise.

I also disagree when you say if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys. The word peanut has taken on a new meaning, or have you forgotten?

redbean said...

oh dear, i forgot about the types of peanuts. got to be careful next time.

my personal experience with an abbot of a temple. his ambition was to build a dialysis centre too. but before he got to this big dream of his, the committee found that more than $30k of donations in his charge were siphoned off by him. and for fear of repercussion and staining the good name of the religion the case was quietly dropped. the abbot went overseas without paying back anything.

the last i heard of is that he is back and gathering a group to raise fund for another new temple. if fate has its way and i got to meet him again i will blow the whistle.

in this case i think the rot is deeper than i know and it helps to reinforce my view on religion or commercialisation of religions.

there are so many wolves in sheepskins.

Anonymous said...

It is high time we revise the meaning of the word "charity organization" to either "profit-oriented i.e. new and old NKF" or "non profit-oriented i.e. KDF".

With this revision, it will make the life of a donor much easier. Don't have to think so much.

Any objection from the floor??

redbean said...

in the past, i think i must be old to keep talking about the past, doctors set up clinics on some days to provide free medical treatments. some even provide free medicines.

i would believe when all these medical services were first set up their intent was to provide a cheaper if not even free medical treatment for the patients. the founder must have thought that what was available was too expensive and many people could not afford the treatment.

then after some time things begin to evolve. people managing them start to have clever ideas. the smarter they are, the cleverer were their ideas and the more dangerous they become.

and the whole mission change. even can become a saving bank for long term fixed deposits.

redbean said...

sounds good, profit oriented charity organisations.

abao said...

There are still philanthropists that provides low or free medical treatment for the people. But such people are nearly extinct nowadays in Singapore.

It is the result of efficiency oriented results that the government has imbued onto the people.

redbean said...

agree. the philantrophists, the lee and shaw foundations, and also many charity organisations are still contributing without asking for any returns.

it is some employees in senior postions in these organisations that demand to be paid very well. and our society's culture has been so distorted that it perpetuates the belief that if you don't ask to be paid well then you are not good enough.

nowadays a robber who can rob a bank will also be highly respected for his skill and also for the money he robbed. the more he robbed the more he is respected. because he now has a lot of money.

Anonymous said...

Hi abao,

Philanthropists? What is that? Have seen one of those for a long time, especially in Singapore. Here on this fair island, it is dog eat dog all the way. If you are weak, you are either stepped on, ignored or looked down upon.

Well, 40 years of living in this competitive society has made Singapore what it is.