I don’t normally publicize this fact, but a decent chunk of what I earn goes to charity. For example, in addition to several smaller donations, last year Bradbury Software donated $5000.00 to a local women’s shelter, and earlier in the year I gave $1000.00 to a local children’s hospitable.
The biggest problem for me isn’t giving the money, but instead figuring out which charities are worthwhile. All too often I’ve donated to charities which sounded good but in fact did little to actually help people other than themselves. Or I’ve given to charities which were worthwhile, but circumstances beyond their control prevented their help from reaching those who needed it.
Finding out which charities are worthwhile can take a lot of time, so it’s a blessing to discover a friend who has already done the work. Every year my good friend Kevin Carter hosts a “Waiting for Wishes” fundraiser dinner which raises money for charities he’s researched, and I’m always glad to be invited.
I have to confess, though, that part of the reason I enjoy the dinner is because it lets loose the prankster in me. You see, Kevin plays for the Tennesse Titans, and he invites fellow teammates to be waiters. In order to raise money, those attending the dinner are supposed to pay these NFL players to sign autographs, sing songs, etc. Well, I figure I should get my money’s worth, so I gave $1000.00 to see Kevin play the part of Rhett Butler in Gone With the Wind.
And of course Kevin had to choose another teammate to be his Scarlett O’Hara.
Without a moment’s hesitation, Kevin chose linebacker Keith Bullock to play Scarlett. I’ll tell you, watching these guys act out the final scene of Gone With the Wind was perhaps the most worthy cause I’ve given to :)