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I have already written a review about charities but this one is a warning now that I have first hand experience of working for one. I am absolutely seething as I write this and I will swear and scream as it is pure anger coming from every pore in my body.
In fact I don’t know whether I can continue working for this charity as I write this. Patriciat actually put the fuse to this detonation but I don’t apportion blame to her just thanks really for setting it off. It needs saying.
THIS IS EMOTIONAL AND WILL CONTAIN SWEARING SO DON’T READ IT IF YOU ARE OFFENDED BY BAD LANGUAGE. (Especially you Rachel)
When I was in my twenties I worked for the BBC, help the aged and several more small charities by ferrying staff to and from different destinations. I was a cab driver. I know the BBC is not actually a charity but they run on public money and that is the same thing to me.
I also worked for several privately owned companies. The difference between the two was quite substantial. All the charities and the BBC wasted money hand over fist on waiting time, and the hire of VIP cars to take them to local destinations. All the private companies were careful and saved money when they could. What real difference is there for a two mile journey in a Mercedes at £7.50 and a brand new Peugeot 406 at £3.50 for a one mile journey?
Another example was waiting time. Take a researcher to Hammersmith from central London from a charitable organisation. Fare £6.00. You always had to wait for them, sometimes for two or three hours. Fare £36.00. Return to base £3.00, total fare £45.00. Private company fare £6.00, drop off and come back later, additional fare £6.00, total fare £12.00.
I have always been sceptical of charities and as you all know I am training to be a counsellor. I needed a placement and I got one with the charity I now work for. Within a few weeks I was offered a full time job. Great you may think as it was an opportunity I was not expecting for another six months. I was also asked to join the board of directors and become a trustee. I was over the moon as you can imagine. A dream comes true, but not bloody quite.
I started on the fourth of January. It is now the 13th of March. I have not been paid yet.
I am in very severe financial difficulties. I am relying on my wife to pay my bills but there is a limit to the help as you can imagine.
I have repeatedly asked what is happening with the wages and have been assured that this is an unusual occurrence. The PCT, (primary care trust or better known as the local health authority apparently pays the utility bills and the wages). I was asked to go to the PCT meeting last week with my boss to discuss funding for the next three years. I sat there while she blatantly lied through her fucking teeth about the performance of this charity.
There is six staff at this charity including me and they have time off and arrive when they like and go home when they like. No one takes a blind bit of notice. They call in sick and no one checks any Doctors certificates or whether they are on annual leave. They do as they like. Add to that we are only open from 10am-4pm that will give you an idea of how lax it all is. I am contracted to do 24 hours a week for £24.000 a year. I only actually do counselling for about nine hours of that 24. Plus if I work on home visits outside 10-4 I accrue hours to have off. Because I do several home visits before and after those hours I regularly accrue 6 hours a week. Therefore every two weeks I can have two days off if I want too.
Don’t get me wrong I am just as accommodating as the rest of you for having a cushy job. I love it. I also do a good job helping the people I am involved with and I don’t feel guilty about that. However the six staff could easily be four. There are only ever three people in the accommodation. The waste of money is incredible and you have to see it to believe it.
The staff and board think up hare brained schemes to basically con donators to give money. They will ask a major company for example for a new Minibus and spend it on BBQs and days out.
The boss has been there twelve years and she has no idea about man management. There is no structure to the charity and as the new boy on the block I have to be careful but it is becoming increasingly difficult for me to live with what is going on.
Then I watch as many millions of people give to these charities like mine and think they have done a good deed. One thing I do find amazing is that the public give generously to African, Asian, and things like the Tsunami charity and yet do not donate to charities much closer to home like mine. They are almost certainly more corrupt than mine is.
Red nose day is an obscenity to me. How can we give to people abroad without sorting ourselves out first? We are given money by some very well known donators. We had a cheque for £5.000 just before Christmas by a very well known English television star. If only she had known what it got spent on!!
The King of Swaziland is having a party costing £1.000.000 to celebrate his birthday. Mr Mugabe continues to kill and destroy his country. Several other African leaders plead poverty and beg release from debt with the West. Personally I wouldn’t give the arseholes one penny until they changed policy or leader.
Great Ormond Street is shutting beds because of financial cuts. Come on what the fuck is going on, are you all going to sit there while our own children are deprived of services?
I don’t just judge this by my own experiences; I have talked to several people who have got out of charity work because of the corruption. They cant live with it and someone I know who is quite well known and works in the Priory in London from where several well known personalities have sought help says she would not go near another charity with a bargepole again as she cant live with the shame and her principles.
Every day there is likely to be another calling for your hard earned money to help another cause. We are all human, and most of us have consciences. We like to help others and there is nothing wrong with that. Just make sure you project your money and your “feel good factor” towards the right cause. Check the charity, see where the money will go, don’t give because you want to feel good. Check what will be deducted for administration.
Don’t believe for one minute that because the appeal is well known on television, like “help a London child”, or “red nose day”, that the charity is run properly and your money will go to what they say it will. The people on television have nothing to do with the charity.
Don’t fall for the emotional aspect like a child dying or starving, the media use it to blackmail you emotionally. While the child of that country is dying, the leader of that country is dining on best western food, and drinking the best whisky.
Remember while that child is dying in Africa one of ours has been refused life saving treatment due to health cuts.
Remember one of you has been refused the latest cancer treatment because your postcode is wrong.
Remember while a hospital runs out of funds the national lottery (which you pay for) pays for a new gay (only) pier on the seafront at Brighton
The national lottery otherwise known as the national fund for anything weird and wonderful then pays for things like the African women’s Southend Sea fishing association, The Asian society for anti American PC war games, the one legged half caste lesbian cat lovers society, the Moslem club for secret drinkers, the white mans large breast and Salmon kissers association, and of course the charity lovers benevolent fund (lets make myself feel better) “lets give to all the weird causes especially the mad African dictators club, lets fuck all those westerners society, and of course the most important one, lets blow the West to pieces at the first opportunity league of nations.
And still you all sit statuesque while these people totally take the piss out of Western society and wait patiently whilst one of them quietly appropriates a nuclear device to wreak havoc on us.
Let’s keep giving to charity eh?
Then these maniacs can blow us up a little faster while they drink our whisky and spend your money.
It will be you who will be complaining when your children, partners, grandchildren, and families get blown to bits.
Remember before you give your money to look after your own first.
Fuck Mr President Blair, he as well as others don’t give a shit about you. He uses your generosity to boost his profile.
The national lottery is run by a bunch of politically correct wankers whose faces look like a metal scrap merchants.
Charities are mainly run by people intent on having a cushy job.
My last word, don’t give to a charity unless you have a one hundred percent guarantee that your money goes where it is supposed to go, and ask for receipts and proof it does so.
Tony. No offence meant to any beliefs or religion mentioned, all used as metaphorical examples.
"Remember while a hospital runs out of funds the national lottery (which you pay for) pays for a new gay (only) pier on the seafront at Brighton" - the national lottery is entirely separate from Government financing I believe. If people buy lottery tickets they know that some of the money goes to charities, but if people seriously want to give to charity they should take your advice and do so after investigating what will happen to the money and in my view give directly.. buying lottery tickets is not a clever way to give money to charity and not a clever way to give to charities you want to support. I don't see any problem with Gay piers in Brighton... if people instead want their money to go to something better than they can do, and if they want it to go to children's hospitals then they might be best advised to lobby government. You are correct that alot of charities are dubious and misusing money... and I think I've said it before, I like yourself, am bemused by people giving to charities overseas to ease their conscience when they could make life changes that would have a much bigger impact on the lives of such people... it was people in the rich west demanding industrial goods and drinking cups of tea that caused the famine in Africa in the 80s... the weather patterns that caused the droughts only recovered when western industry cleaned up its act in terms of heavy visible air pollution. But I suppose the naivety of Geldof and co will go on as he jets off to his next holiday. Well done, Pete
muttleythefrog 05.05.2005 16:40
Interesting viewpoints given, well done. However, I am concerned by blanket statements made that often miss crucial distinction. "Remember while that child is dying in Africa one of ours has been refused life saving treatment due to health cuts." - charitable donations from the public and Government spending on Health are separate... they only intertwine in any way when Government gives money to charity. It is also fair to say that it is because of our country that we can be implicated heavily in much of the death we have seen in Africa over the last 20 odd years... and it is also fair to say that it generally is much cheaper to save a life in Africa than in Britain because often the causes of death are much simpler and easily remedied.
"And still you all sit statuesque while these people totally take the piss out of Western society and wait patiently whilst one of them quietly appropriates a nuclear device to wreak havoc on us." "Then these maniacs can blow us up a little faster while they drink our whisky and spend your money. " - I am at a loss to understand the points being made here... I think you're referring to 'rogue' regimes... and as someone pointed out earlier, charities usually operate independent of government so in such countries charities can be an aid to democracy and act as eyes to the world in terms of activities on the ground... precisely the sort of information that may be useful if to follow your policy of Britain cleaning up the world of Saddam Husseins and Mugabes.
CareBear 03.05.2005 13:25
It sounds like a letter to the Charity Commission is in order. Failure to act simply condones the corruption if it exists.