Thursday, May 08, 2008

Why not Just Send a Check?

Students buy jeans, help Somali women.

P.S. This, courtesy of the comments.


Anonymous said...

Why Not says:

The event is fine for raising awareness. For raising cash, a $25 donation each from 130 people who bought jeans they surely do not need would have raised a lot more than the $1,200 total.

The tuition for one Dartmouth student could cover the tuition plus expenses for several dozen Somali women. Something for Dartmouth donors to consider when they prioritize their giving. Something for Dartmouth students to consider when they apply themselves in class and put their education to use after graduation.

Anonymous said...

...because a check wouldn't net you a pair of discounted jeans? really, does every fundraiser put on by a college organization deserve to be mocked?

Anonymous said...

white people love raising awareness

Also, while this post is interesting, this part of the debate over how to raise money for charity is nothing new.

The answer to the question in the post title is that it's easier to convince people to buy discounted jeans with a noble purpose for some of the money than it is to convince people to write checks.

In the best possible world, people would go far out of their way, motivated by pure altruism. But good luck convincing more than a few people to do that. It's much easier to convince a lot of people to make a bunch of tiny, nearly effortless changes in the way they do things. More people are willing to buy jeans from a different source than are willing to open up their checkbooks. Good for the organizers for making positive use of that.