Tag: Truth

The cold, hard truth about the ice bucket challenge #blood #donate


#donation buckets

#

The cold, hard truth about the ice bucket challenge

I look at the camera, hold a bucket of ice water over my head, tip it upside down, post the video on social media and then nominate two others to do the same. Along the way, my nominees and I use the opportunity to donate to the ALS Association, a charity that fights amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also called Lou Gerhig s disease), a fatal neurodegenerative disease. Multiply this activity 70,000 times, and the result is that the ALS Association has received $3 million in additional donations. Via the ice bucket challenge, celebrities and the general public have fun and receive publicity; at the same time, millions of dollars are raised for a good cause. It s a win-win, right?

Sadly, things are not so simple.

The key problem is funding cannibalism. That $3 million in donations doesn t appear out of a vacuum. Because people on average are limited in how much they re willing to donate to good causes, if someone donates $100 to the ALS Association, he or she will likely donate less to other charities.

This isn t just speculation. Research from my own non-profit. which raises money for the most effective global poverty charities, has found that, for every $1 we raise, 50 would have been donated anyway. Giving What We Can fundraises for global poverty charities by encouraging people to pledge at least 10% of their income. For everyone who joins, we ask them to estimate what proportion they would have donated otherwise. Averaged among all our members, that amount is greater than 50% (or $150mn out of $300mn). Given our fundraising model, which asks for commitments much larger than the amount people typically donate, we have reason to think that this is a lower proportion than is typical for fundraising drives. So, because of the $3 million that the ALS Association has received, I d bet that much more than $1.5 million has been lost by other charities.

A similar phenomenon has been studied in the lab by psychologists. It s called moral licensing . the idea that doing one good action leads one to compensate by doing fewer good actions in the future. In a recent experiment. participants either selected a product from a selection of mostly green items (like an energy-efficient light bulb) or from a selection of mostly conventional items (like a regular light bulb). They were then told to perform a supposedly unrelated task. However, in this second task, the results were self-reported, so the participants had a financial incentive to lie; and they were invited to pay themselves out of an envelope, so they had an opportunity to steal as well.

What happened? People who had previously purchased a green product were significantly more likely to both lie and steal than those who had purchased the conventional product. Their demonstration of ethical behavior subconsciously gave them license to act unethically when the chance arose.

Amazingly, even just saying that you d do something good can cause the moral self-licensing effect. In another study, half the participants were asked to imagine helping a foreign student who had asked for assistance in understanding a lecture. They subsequently gave significantly less to charity when given the chance to do so than the other half of the participants, who had not been asked to imagine helping another student.

The explanation behind moral licensing is that people are often more concerned about looking good or feeling good rather than doing good. If you do your bit by buying an energy-efficient lightbulb, then your status as a good human being is less likely to be called into question if you subsequently steal.

In terms of the conditions for the moral licensing effect to occur, the ice bucket challenge is perfect. The challenge gives you a way to very publicly demonstrate your altruism via a painful task, despite actually accomplishing very little (on average, not including those who don t donate at all, a $40 gift, or 0.07% of the average American household s income): it s geared up to make you feel as good about your actions as possible, rather than to ensure that your actions do as much good as possible.

This why Caitlin Dewey, a blogger for the Washington Post who claims that we should praise the challenge for raising so much money, gets it all wrong. The ice bucket challenge has done one good thing, which is raise $3 million for the ALS Association. But it s also done a really bad thing: take money and attention away from other charities and other causes. That means that, if we want to know whether the ice bucket challenge has been on balance a good thing for the world, we ve got to assess how effective the ALS Associations is compared with other charities. If 50% of that $3 million would have been donated anyway, and if the ALS association is less than half as effective at turning donations into positive impact on people s wellbeing than other charities are on average, then the fundraiser would actively be doing harm. It s perfectly possible that this is the case: even though some charities are fantastically effective. many achieve very little. You just can t know without doing some serious investigation.

This isn t to object to the ALS Association in particular. Almost every charity does the same thing engaging in a race to the bottom where the benefits to the donor have to be as large as possible, and the costs as small as possible. (Things are even worse in the UK. where the reward of publicizing yourself all over social media comes at a suggested price of just 3 donated to MacMillan Cancer Support.) We should be very worried about this, because competitive fundraising ultimately destroys value for the social sector as a whole. We should not reward people for minor acts of altruism, when they could have done so much more, because doing so creates a culture where the correct response to the existence of preventable death and suffering is to give some pocket change.

Cannibalism of funding among charities is a major problem. However, there is a solution. The moral licensing phenomenon doesn t always happen: there is a countervailing psychological force, called commitment effects. If in donating to charity you don t conceive of it as doing your bit but instead as taking one small step towards making altruism a part of your identity, then one good deed really will beget another. This means that we should tie new altruistic commitments to serious, long-lasting behavior change. Rather than making a small donation to a charity you ve barely heard of, you could make a commitment to find out which charities are most cost-effective. and to set up an ongoing commitment to those charities that you conclude do the most good with your donations. Or you could publicly pledge to give a proportion of your income.

These would be meaningful behavior changes: they would be structural changes to how you live your life; and you could express them as the first step towards making altruism part of your identity. No doubt that, if we ran such campaigns, the number of people who would do these actions would be smaller, but in the long term the total impact would be far larger.

So, sure, pour a bucket of water over yourself, or go bungee jumping, or lie in a bathtub of beans, whatever. But only do these things if you connect these fundraisers with meaningful behavior change, otherwise your campaign, even if seemingly fantastically successful, could be doing more harm than good.

You might also like: This week, let s dump a few ice buckets to wipe out malaria too


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Donate A Timeshare – The Truth #donation #car


#donate timeshare

#

Timeshare Donations Fact or Fiction?

Have you ever thought about donating your timeshare? Are you concerned about the possible risks of breaking federal tax laws by claiming a timeshare as a donation when it seems to be otherwise worthless?

Were you contacted by a company promising to eliminate your timeshare burden by helping you donate it to a charity and claim thousands of dollars in charitable tax credits?

Are you aware that it is illegal to donate a timeshare and claim a false fair market value? Have you heard all these great promises about how you can write off thousands of dollars for a timeshare you can t even sell for a single dollar?

How many times has it just felt like a scam ?

Learn how our transfer process works and then sign up for a free consultation to to get out of your timeshare from the convenience of home and without the risk of being ensnared in a tax fraud scheme. Our inexpensive, low-cost, no-haggle timeshare redemption service is typically thousands less than others charge . More importantly, we offer free consultations that wil help you to pick the right service that genuinely fits your needs. Redemption and Release, LLC has helped thousands of distressed owners just like yourself with their passionate resolve to achieving timeshare freedom and honest and fair approach to customer service.

It has been a relief to deal with a company that did what it said it would do to transfer our timeshare title at a cost below others. Thank you for your caring and polite service

Roger R. from Greer, South Carolina (Wyndham Resorts)

WANT HELP?

We guarantee all our services and use a licensed, bonded, and insured title agency to protect your money and our reputation. Choosing to do business with our company provides you the peace-of-mind knowing that you are dealing with a company that stands behind its promises.

If you would like a FREE individual consultation from one of our Redemption Specialists, do not hesitate to call us now at 888.743.9051. Remember, as a guest of this site you are also granted access to our exclusive Timeshare Help Articles .

IRS Circular 230 Disclosure

To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this document is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter that is contained in this document.

We don’t just cancel your timeshare – we redeem it.

It’s a simple and inexpensive process, and the best way to get rid of a timeshare. Redemption and Release, LLC is the nations premiere Timeshare Redemption company because we offer a no-haggle, low cost, and twice guaranteed timeshare exit solution. We provide an inexpensive way to get out of a timeshare.

Redemption and Release, LLC is NOT a timeshare rental or resale company. We only offer one core service for our valued clients, successful Timeshare Redemption.


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The Truth About Where Your Donated Clothes End Up – ABC News #memorial #donations


#donate used clothing

#

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Yahoo!-ABC News Network | 2016 ABC News Internet Ventures. All rights reserved.

The Truth About Where Your Donated Clothes End Up

Christmas is one of those times of the year when many Americans clean out our closets and donate some of our used clothing to a charity. Perhaps we hope that Santa Clause will replace them with shiny new shirts, jeans, blouses and shoes. Or maybe we just want to do some good.

Watch World News with Charles Gibson, 6:30PM ET for more on this story.

In New York City, AnnMarie Resnick told ABC News why her family donates clothing at Christmas time. “By the time my kids grow out of it,” she said, “it is generally in good condition, and I want someone else to get good use out of it.” And who does she think is benefiting? “We hope, and we think we know, it is people in our neighborhood who just aren’t as fortunate as us. And who need it.”

And the same sentiment from Marc Kaplowictz, who told ABC News: “I am assuming that is helping people who need it more than we do.”

But do most Americans really know what they’re doing when they donate clothing? For instance, do you think you are giving your beloved but worn jeans to someone with no money to buy their own? Perhaps some poor person in your hometown, or even far away in Africa?

Wake up and smell the money. Your used clothes are usually sold, not given away.

According to various estimates, here’s what happens to your clothing giveaways. In most cases, a small amount of the items, the best quality castoffs — less than 10 percent of donations — are kept by the charitable institutions and sold in their thrift shops to other Americans looking for a bargain. These buyers could be people who are hard up, or they could be folks who like the idea of a good deal on a stylish old item that no longer can be found in regular stores.

The remaining 90 percent or more of what you give away is sold by the charitable institution to textile recycling firms. Bernard Brill, of the Secondary Recycled Textiles Association, told ABC News: “Our industry buys from charitable institutions, hundred of millions of dollars worth of clothing every year.”

So, at this point, the charity you have donated clothes to has earned money off of them in two ways — in their shops and by selling to recyclers. Then the recycler kicks into high gear. Most of the clothes are recycled into cleaning cloths and other industrial items, for which the recyclers say they make a modest profit.

Twenty-five percent, however, of what the recycling companies purchase from charities is used not as rags, but as a commodity in an international trading economy that many American may not even know about. Brill, from the textile association, picked up the story. “This clothing is processed, sorted and distributed around the world to developing countries,” he said.

Take that pair of bluejeans you may have recently donated. Your jeans are stuffed with others into tightly sealed plastic bales weighing about 120 pounds and containing about 100 pairs of jeans.

The bales are loaded into huge containers and sold to international shippers who put them on ships bound for Africa and other developing regions. Again, the price of your old jeans has increased a bit because the shipper had to buy them.

By the time the bale of jeans is unloaded from a container here in Accra, Ghana, it is worth around $144. That’s $1.30 per pair of jeans. But when the bale is opened up and the jeans are laid out for sale in the so-called “bend over” markets, customers bend over and select their purchases from the ground for an average price of $6.66 per pair of jeans. That’s a 500 percent increase in value just by opening up the bale of clothes.

So now you know that about 70 percent of your old donated jeans are being used as cloths to wipe oil off of engine parts and the remaining 20 to 25 percent of pants that left your closet with no value are ultimately sold in Africa, where American clothes are extremely popular, for an average price of about $7 per pair. That’s a bargain for African shoppers — most of them are low-income earners who cannot afford to buy newly made U.S. clothes.

And jeans are by no means the only American charity clothing items on sale here. I saw everything from T-shirts with U.S. logos like “General Motors” to major league baseball caps, name brand dresses, sports shoes and even underwear. All of them used.

There are two ways to look at all this. One view is that it is wrong for entrepreneurs to profit from what you give away to charity, and that by dumping huge amounts of cheap U.S. clothing on the streets here, African textile industries are closing their factories and laying people off because they cannot make clothes as cheaply as those American items found in the bend over markets.

Bama Athreya, deputy director of the International Labor Rights Fund in Washingtron D.C. told ABC News: “Many of these countries in Africa used to have a fairly well-developed indigenous market for textiles and clothing and particularly for hand-crafted or hand-tailored clothes. And we’ve seen those markets virtually disappear over the last decade or two.”

Athreya concedes that the African market for used U.S. clothing is not the only reason African workers have lost jobs. ABC News has spoken to various sources who point out that Africa also lags in production techniques and suffers from lack of infrastructure, job training and from corruption that undermines efficiency. But, added Athreya, “There is no question that the secondhand clothing market has had a significant impact on domestic African clothing production. The tailors, the small producers have been put out of business. Those were good jobs for Africans and there are no jobs taking their place. This is a trade that feeds on the poor rather than benefits the poor.”

And if Africans can’t keep their factories open in order to make clothes, they can’t make clothes to export to the United States, thus they continue to suffer economically.

Neil Kearney, general secretary of the Brussels based International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers Federation says the practice is exploitative, “It is neo colonialism in its purest form. It’s exporting poverty to Africa, a continent that is already exceedingly poor.”

This state of affairs upsets AnnMarie Resnick, a woman we met in Manhattan while she was donating clothes, who told ABC News: “It stinks. I don’t like it, but I would still give. There are a lot of people who are going to constantly profit, because this is probably happening with really nice people. With us — and we profit too — we get a tax deduction. If I knew how to send to Africa myself, I would.”

Marc Kaplowictz, whom we also met while he was donating clothes in New York City, has mixed feelings: “And who ends up with the profit there? Big picture, obviously I would be against that. I am obviously the little guy in this process. I don’t know. I don’t think the answer is to have people stop donating.”

The other view is that the donated clothing market is actually the American way, that your old clothing is used at every step to create new wealth and to help people who are less fortunate. First of all, charities like Goodwill Industries and The Salvation Army make clear on their Web sites that proceeds for charity and thrift shops, as well as from bulk sales to recyclers, go directly to support education, work and drug rehab programs for people who would otherwise suffer greatly. After all, isn’t that the spirit in which you gave your clothes to begin with?

Brill, of the Secondary Recycled Textiles Association, told ABC News that it is a win-win situation. “It provides thousands of jobs here at home [in the U.S.] and it provides hundreds of thousands of jobs in Africa.” And he added: “It also diverts waste material that would otherwise go to land fill. It goes to recycling, so it helps to protect the environment.”

Both the Goodwill and the Salvation Army point out on their Web sites that much of the donated clothes are sold in their charity shops to raise money for a variety of good causes. But there is no mention of the fact that some donated items are sold overseas at a profit to private enterprises. One Goodwill source stressed that Americans should continue to donate their used clothing because U.S. charities need their cut of this market in order to help other Americans in need.

Most people we spoke with seemed to agree.

Lynn Novick, also donating in New York, told ABC News: “So someone’s making money every time they are sold? At least they are not going in the garbage, and going totally to waste…I will continue donating.”

And Valerie Adam, of Manhattan, said, “It is kinda the American way, isn’t it. Somebody discovered something and turned it into a business. I will continue donating. We Americans we collect so much. We accrue so much.”

And here on the streets of Ghana, Africans, for better or worse, end up buying a lot of what we give away.


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Donate A Timeshare – The Truth #unwanted #furniture


#donate timeshares

#

Timeshare Donations Fact or Fiction?

Have you ever thought about donating your timeshare? Are you concerned about the possible risks of breaking federal tax laws by claiming a timeshare as a donation when it seems to be otherwise worthless?

Were you contacted by a company promising to eliminate your timeshare burden by helping you donate it to a charity and claim thousands of dollars in charitable tax credits?

Are you aware that it is illegal to donate a timeshare and claim a false fair market value? Have you heard all these great promises about how you can write off thousands of dollars for a timeshare you can t even sell for a single dollar?

How many times has it just felt like a scam ?

Learn how our transfer process works and then sign up for a free consultation to to get out of your timeshare from the convenience of home and without the risk of being ensnared in a tax fraud scheme. Our inexpensive, low-cost, no-haggle timeshare redemption service is typically thousands less than others charge . More importantly, we offer free consultations that wil help you to pick the right service that genuinely fits your needs. Redemption and Release, LLC has helped thousands of distressed owners just like yourself with their passionate resolve to achieving timeshare freedom and honest and fair approach to customer service.

It has been a relief to deal with a company that did what it said it would do to transfer our timeshare title at a cost below others. Thank you for your caring and polite service

Roger R. from Greer, South Carolina (Wyndham Resorts)

WANT HELP?

We guarantee all our services and use a licensed, bonded, and insured title agency to protect your money and our reputation. Choosing to do business with our company provides you the peace-of-mind knowing that you are dealing with a company that stands behind its promises.

If you would like a FREE individual consultation from one of our Redemption Specialists, do not hesitate to call us now at 888.743.9051. Remember, as a guest of this site you are also granted access to our exclusive Timeshare Help Articles .

IRS Circular 230 Disclosure

To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this document is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter that is contained in this document.

We don’t just cancel your timeshare – we redeem it.

It’s a simple and inexpensive process, and the best way to get rid of a timeshare. Redemption and Release, LLC is the nations premiere Timeshare Redemption company because we offer a no-haggle, low cost, and twice guaranteed timeshare exit solution. We provide an inexpensive way to get out of a timeshare.

Redemption and Release, LLC is NOT a timeshare rental or resale company. We only offer one core service for our valued clients, successful Timeshare Redemption.


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The truth about premium rated SMS donations #where #to #donate #cars


#sms donations

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The truth about premium rated SMS donations

Premium rated SMS donations have become commonplace in South Africa, but well known Radio 702 personality and technology journalist Aki Anastasiou recently raised concerns about what percentage of your donation actually end up at a charity.

Anastasiou recently tweeted I m fed up with premium rated SMS services that are not transparent with the public .

Anastasiou provided an example on a recent SMS donation promotion: If you d like to assist with relief efforts in Japan, SMS Japan to 47499 to help the people of Japan. SMS costs only R2 .

Truth is, ONLY around 75 cents of that R2 is going to Japan, the rest goes to the network and for admin costs. How can the networks profit from a humanitarian catastrophe? Disgraceful! said Anastasiou.

The people behind the campaign confirmed that this promotion only makes between 71 cents and 86 cents per SMS depending on the network. They also pointed out that the idea was to market the brand name of their start-up online marketing company.

Networks taking their slice

Vodacom s Chief Executive of Public Affairs Portia Maurice explained that they charge standard rates irrespective of the price of the service.

For an example, we charge R0.50 for SMS messages irrespective of the WASP s price to the consumer (i.e. it doesn t matter if the service is priced at R2.00, R5.00 or R20.00 service, our charge remains R0.50). This charge is different depending on the technology used (e.g. R0.80 for MMS, R0.20 for USSD etc), said Maurice.

Maurice added that Vodacom does not generate any revenue from charity campaigns. We have a policy to waive all revenues generated from such initiatives .

The only charges deducted are costs paid to Service Providers. In fact, forfeiting our revenues is in itself a contribution since there is a cost associated with the delivery of SMS messages. We always do all we can to contribute to initiatives that give back to society, said Maurice.

MTN said that they do not share any funds directly with a charity. The primary responsibility and relationship lies between the WASP and the Charity concerned, said Kevin Jacobson, General Manager Business Channels at MTN.

The WASP will pay over monies due to the Charity as a consequence of the agreement between the WASP and charity concerned. MTN is not a party to that agreement.

Jacobson pointed out that Premium rated SMS are designed for the purpose of content distribution and not donations. However, there is a policy within MTN that the charity can approach MTN Foundation, and the Foundation may at its own discretion, choose to subsidise the network share charge of the transaction in favour of the charity, Jacobson concluded.

The truth about premium rated SMS donations Comments and views


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The Truth About Timeshares #best #car #donation #program


#timeshare donation

#

The Truth About Timeshares

4 Minute Read

Myth: I can get a great deal on a timeshare and go for vacation every year! Plus, I can always sell it if I get tired of it.
Truth: Timeshares are one of the biggest scams on the market today. Once you are stuck in one, you are stuck in a black hole.

The first word that should come to your head when you hear the word timeshares should be RUN! Run far, far away! If you run fast enough, you can eventually escape that annoying, high-pressure salesperson!

Think about this for a minute. Why in the world would you pay thousands and thousands of your hard-earned dollars for a place with minimal square-footage that you might get the chance to visit for one week each year? Add to that the fact that you have absolutely no equity in the place. And you have to pay extra ongoing “maintenance fees.” And selling it is near impossible. And it’s basically just an expensive, ongoing headache. And, and, and!

Local experts you can trust.

Sounds completely ridiculous, doesn’t it? That’s because it is!

Why All the Buzz?

Timeshares are one of the top sellers in the travel and hospitality industry. Thousands are available and millions of people “own” them. But that doesn’t mean timeshares are a good idea. An article on MarketWatch.com tells us that timeshares are generally marketed and sold to people who really can’t afford them. So if you think you can afford it, you can’t. Even if you really think you can, your money is better off in a cookie jar.

The average cost of a timeshare in the U.S. is $14,500. If you put that money in a mutual fund averaging 12% over 10 years, you would have almost $48,000. Pretty good.

In 20 years, you would have over $178,000. Even better.

In 40 years, you would have over $1.7 million! That’s a lot of free money! Hope you like the vacation house!

Throwing money at a timeshare is not an investment and will not generate money for you. An investment implies that you can eventually sell it and make money. With timeshares, you’re just pre-paying your hotel bill for the next 20 years whether or not you use it.

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The Truth About Where Your Donated Clothes End Up – ABC News #donate #online


#places to donate clothes

#

Sections

Shows

Local

Yahoo!-ABC News Network | 2016 ABC News Internet Ventures. All rights reserved.

The Truth About Where Your Donated Clothes End Up

Christmas is one of those times of the year when many Americans clean out our closets and donate some of our used clothing to a charity. Perhaps we hope that Santa Clause will replace them with shiny new shirts, jeans, blouses and shoes. Or maybe we just want to do some good.

Watch World News with Charles Gibson, 6:30PM ET for more on this story.

In New York City, AnnMarie Resnick told ABC News why her family donates clothing at Christmas time. “By the time my kids grow out of it,” she said, “it is generally in good condition, and I want someone else to get good use out of it.” And who does she think is benefiting? “We hope, and we think we know, it is people in our neighborhood who just aren’t as fortunate as us. And who need it.”

And the same sentiment from Marc Kaplowictz, who told ABC News: “I am assuming that is helping people who need it more than we do.”

But do most Americans really know what they’re doing when they donate clothing? For instance, do you think you are giving your beloved but worn jeans to someone with no money to buy their own? Perhaps some poor person in your hometown, or even far away in Africa?

Wake up and smell the money. Your used clothes are usually sold, not given away.

According to various estimates, here’s what happens to your clothing giveaways. In most cases, a small amount of the items, the best quality castoffs — less than 10 percent of donations — are kept by the charitable institutions and sold in their thrift shops to other Americans looking for a bargain. These buyers could be people who are hard up, or they could be folks who like the idea of a good deal on a stylish old item that no longer can be found in regular stores.

The remaining 90 percent or more of what you give away is sold by the charitable institution to textile recycling firms. Bernard Brill, of the Secondary Recycled Textiles Association, told ABC News: “Our industry buys from charitable institutions, hundred of millions of dollars worth of clothing every year.”

So, at this point, the charity you have donated clothes to has earned money off of them in two ways — in their shops and by selling to recyclers. Then the recycler kicks into high gear. Most of the clothes are recycled into cleaning cloths and other industrial items, for which the recyclers say they make a modest profit.

Twenty-five percent, however, of what the recycling companies purchase from charities is used not as rags, but as a commodity in an international trading economy that many American may not even know about. Brill, from the textile association, picked up the story. “This clothing is processed, sorted and distributed around the world to developing countries,” he said.

Take that pair of bluejeans you may have recently donated. Your jeans are stuffed with others into tightly sealed plastic bales weighing about 120 pounds and containing about 100 pairs of jeans.

The bales are loaded into huge containers and sold to international shippers who put them on ships bound for Africa and other developing regions. Again, the price of your old jeans has increased a bit because the shipper had to buy them.

By the time the bale of jeans is unloaded from a container here in Accra, Ghana, it is worth around $144. That’s $1.30 per pair of jeans. But when the bale is opened up and the jeans are laid out for sale in the so-called “bend over” markets, customers bend over and select their purchases from the ground for an average price of $6.66 per pair of jeans. That’s a 500 percent increase in value just by opening up the bale of clothes.

So now you know that about 70 percent of your old donated jeans are being used as cloths to wipe oil off of engine parts and the remaining 20 to 25 percent of pants that left your closet with no value are ultimately sold in Africa, where American clothes are extremely popular, for an average price of about $7 per pair. That’s a bargain for African shoppers — most of them are low-income earners who cannot afford to buy newly made U.S. clothes.

And jeans are by no means the only American charity clothing items on sale here. I saw everything from T-shirts with U.S. logos like “General Motors” to major league baseball caps, name brand dresses, sports shoes and even underwear. All of them used.

There are two ways to look at all this. One view is that it is wrong for entrepreneurs to profit from what you give away to charity, and that by dumping huge amounts of cheap U.S. clothing on the streets here, African textile industries are closing their factories and laying people off because they cannot make clothes as cheaply as those American items found in the bend over markets.

Bama Athreya, deputy director of the International Labor Rights Fund in Washingtron D.C. told ABC News: “Many of these countries in Africa used to have a fairly well-developed indigenous market for textiles and clothing and particularly for hand-crafted or hand-tailored clothes. And we’ve seen those markets virtually disappear over the last decade or two.”

Athreya concedes that the African market for used U.S. clothing is not the only reason African workers have lost jobs. ABC News has spoken to various sources who point out that Africa also lags in production techniques and suffers from lack of infrastructure, job training and from corruption that undermines efficiency. But, added Athreya, “There is no question that the secondhand clothing market has had a significant impact on domestic African clothing production. The tailors, the small producers have been put out of business. Those were good jobs for Africans and there are no jobs taking their place. This is a trade that feeds on the poor rather than benefits the poor.”

And if Africans can’t keep their factories open in order to make clothes, they can’t make clothes to export to the United States, thus they continue to suffer economically.

Neil Kearney, general secretary of the Brussels based International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers Federation says the practice is exploitative, “It is neo colonialism in its purest form. It’s exporting poverty to Africa, a continent that is already exceedingly poor.”

This state of affairs upsets AnnMarie Resnick, a woman we met in Manhattan while she was donating clothes, who told ABC News: “It stinks. I don’t like it, but I would still give. There are a lot of people who are going to constantly profit, because this is probably happening with really nice people. With us — and we profit too — we get a tax deduction. If I knew how to send to Africa myself, I would.”

Marc Kaplowictz, whom we also met while he was donating clothes in New York City, has mixed feelings: “And who ends up with the profit there? Big picture, obviously I would be against that. I am obviously the little guy in this process. I don’t know. I don’t think the answer is to have people stop donating.”

The other view is that the donated clothing market is actually the American way, that your old clothing is used at every step to create new wealth and to help people who are less fortunate. First of all, charities like Goodwill Industries and The Salvation Army make clear on their Web sites that proceeds for charity and thrift shops, as well as from bulk sales to recyclers, go directly to support education, work and drug rehab programs for people who would otherwise suffer greatly. After all, isn’t that the spirit in which you gave your clothes to begin with?

Brill, of the Secondary Recycled Textiles Association, told ABC News that it is a win-win situation. “It provides thousands of jobs here at home [in the U.S.] and it provides hundreds of thousands of jobs in Africa.” And he added: “It also diverts waste material that would otherwise go to land fill. It goes to recycling, so it helps to protect the environment.”

Both the Goodwill and the Salvation Army point out on their Web sites that much of the donated clothes are sold in their charity shops to raise money for a variety of good causes. But there is no mention of the fact that some donated items are sold overseas at a profit to private enterprises. One Goodwill source stressed that Americans should continue to donate their used clothing because U.S. charities need their cut of this market in order to help other Americans in need.

Most people we spoke with seemed to agree.

Lynn Novick, also donating in New York, told ABC News: “So someone’s making money every time they are sold? At least they are not going in the garbage, and going totally to waste…I will continue donating.”

And Valerie Adam, of Manhattan, said, “It is kinda the American way, isn’t it. Somebody discovered something and turned it into a business. I will continue donating. We Americans we collect so much. We accrue so much.”

And here on the streets of Ghana, Africans, for better or worse, end up buying a lot of what we give away.


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Donate A Timeshare – The Truth #donate #blood #for #money


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Timeshare Donations Fact or Fiction?

Have you ever thought about donating your timeshare? Are you concerned about the possible risks of breaking federal tax laws by claiming a timeshare as a donation when it seems to be otherwise worthless?

Were you contacted by a company promising to eliminate your timeshare burden by helping you donate it to a charity and claim thousands of dollars in charitable tax credits?

Are you aware that it is illegal to donate a timeshare and claim a false fair market value? Have you heard all these great promises about how you can write off thousands of dollars for a timeshare you can t even sell for a single dollar?

How many times has it just felt like a scam ?

Learn how our transfer process works and then sign up for a free consultation to to get out of your timeshare from the convenience of home and without the risk of being ensnared in a tax fraud scheme. Our inexpensive, low-cost, no-haggle timeshare redemption service is typically thousands less than others charge . More importantly, we offer free consultations that wil help you to pick the right service that genuinely fits your needs. Redemption and Release, LLC has helped thousands of distressed owners just like yourself with their passionate resolve to achieving timeshare freedom and honest and fair approach to customer service.

It has been a relief to deal with a company that did what it said it would do to transfer our timeshare title at a cost below others. Thank you for your caring and polite service

Roger R. from Greer, South Carolina (Wyndham Resorts)

WANT HELP?

We guarantee all our services and use a licensed, bonded, and insured title agency to protect your money and our reputation. Choosing to do business with our company provides you the peace-of-mind knowing that you are dealing with a company that stands behind its promises.

If you would like a FREE individual consultation from one of our Redemption Specialists, do not hesitate to call us now at 888.743.9051. Remember, as a guest of this site you are also granted access to our exclusive Timeshare Help Articles .

IRS Circular 230 Disclosure

To ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, we inform you that any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this document is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code, or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter that is contained in this document.

We don’t just cancel your timeshare – we redeem it.

It’s a simple and inexpensive process, and the best way to get rid of a timeshare. Redemption and Release, LLC is the nations premiere Timeshare Redemption company because we offer a no-haggle, low cost, and twice guaranteed timeshare exit solution. We provide an inexpensive way to get out of a timeshare.

Redemption and Release, LLC is NOT a timeshare rental or resale company. We only offer one core service for our valued clients, successful Timeshare Redemption.


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The cold, hard truth about the ice bucket challenge #blood #donation #for #money


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The cold, hard truth about the ice bucket challenge

I look at the camera, hold a bucket of ice water over my head, tip it upside down, post the video on social media and then nominate two others to do the same. Along the way, my nominees and I use the opportunity to donate to the ALS Association, a charity that fights amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also called Lou Gerhig s disease), a fatal neurodegenerative disease. Multiply this activity 70,000 times, and the result is that the ALS Association has received $3 million in additional donations. Via the ice bucket challenge, celebrities and the general public have fun and receive publicity; at the same time, millions of dollars are raised for a good cause. It s a win-win, right?

Sadly, things are not so simple.

The key problem is funding cannibalism. That $3 million in donations doesn t appear out of a vacuum. Because people on average are limited in how much they re willing to donate to good causes, if someone donates $100 to the ALS Association, he or she will likely donate less to other charities.

This isn t just speculation. Research from my own non-profit. which raises money for the most effective global poverty charities, has found that, for every $1 we raise, 50 would have been donated anyway. Giving What We Can fundraises for global poverty charities by encouraging people to pledge at least 10% of their income. For everyone who joins, we ask them to estimate what proportion they would have donated otherwise. Averaged among all our members, that amount is greater than 50% (or $150mn out of $300mn). Given our fundraising model, which asks for commitments much larger than the amount people typically donate, we have reason to think that this is a lower proportion than is typical for fundraising drives. So, because of the $3 million that the ALS Association has received, I d bet that much more than $1.5 million has been lost by other charities.

A similar phenomenon has been studied in the lab by psychologists. It s called moral licensing . the idea that doing one good action leads one to compensate by doing fewer good actions in the future. In a recent experiment. participants either selected a product from a selection of mostly green items (like an energy-efficient light bulb) or from a selection of mostly conventional items (like a regular light bulb). They were then told to perform a supposedly unrelated task. However, in this second task, the results were self-reported, so the participants had a financial incentive to lie; and they were invited to pay themselves out of an envelope, so they had an opportunity to steal as well.

What happened? People who had previously purchased a green product were significantly more likely to both lie and steal than those who had purchased the conventional product. Their demonstration of ethical behavior subconsciously gave them license to act unethically when the chance arose.

Amazingly, even just saying that you d do something good can cause the moral self-licensing effect. In another study, half the participants were asked to imagine helping a foreign student who had asked for assistance in understanding a lecture. They subsequently gave significantly less to charity when given the chance to do so than the other half of the participants, who had not been asked to imagine helping another student.

The explanation behind moral licensing is that people are often more concerned about looking good or feeling good rather than doing good. If you do your bit by buying an energy-efficient lightbulb, then your status as a good human being is less likely to be called into question if you subsequently steal.

In terms of the conditions for the moral licensing effect to occur, the ice bucket challenge is perfect. The challenge gives you a way to very publicly demonstrate your altruism via a painful task, despite actually accomplishing very little (on average, not including those who don t donate at all, a $40 gift, or 0.07% of the average American household s income): it s geared up to make you feel as good about your actions as possible, rather than to ensure that your actions do as much good as possible.

This why Caitlin Dewey, a blogger for the Washington Post who claims that we should praise the challenge for raising so much money, gets it all wrong. The ice bucket challenge has done one good thing, which is raise $3 million for the ALS Association. But it s also done a really bad thing: take money and attention away from other charities and other causes. That means that, if we want to know whether the ice bucket challenge has been on balance a good thing for the world, we ve got to assess how effective the ALS Associations is compared with other charities. If 50% of that $3 million would have been donated anyway, and if the ALS association is less than half as effective at turning donations into positive impact on people s wellbeing than other charities are on average, then the fundraiser would actively be doing harm. It s perfectly possible that this is the case: even though some charities are fantastically effective. many achieve very little. You just can t know without doing some serious investigation.

This isn t to object to the ALS Association in particular. Almost every charity does the same thing engaging in a race to the bottom where the benefits to the donor have to be as large as possible, and the costs as small as possible. (Things are even worse in the UK. where the reward of publicizing yourself all over social media comes at a suggested price of just 3 donated to MacMillan Cancer Support.) We should be very worried about this, because competitive fundraising ultimately destroys value for the social sector as a whole. We should not reward people for minor acts of altruism, when they could have done so much more, because doing so creates a culture where the correct response to the existence of preventable death and suffering is to give some pocket change.

Cannibalism of funding among charities is a major problem. However, there is a solution. The moral licensing phenomenon doesn t always happen: there is a countervailing psychological force, called commitment effects. If in donating to charity you don t conceive of it as doing your bit but instead as taking one small step towards making altruism a part of your identity, then one good deed really will beget another. This means that we should tie new altruistic commitments to serious, long-lasting behavior change. Rather than making a small donation to a charity you ve barely heard of, you could make a commitment to find out which charities are most cost-effective. and to set up an ongoing commitment to those charities that you conclude do the most good with your donations. Or you could publicly pledge to give a proportion of your income.

These would be meaningful behavior changes: they would be structural changes to how you live your life; and you could express them as the first step towards making altruism part of your identity. No doubt that, if we ran such campaigns, the number of people who would do these actions would be smaller, but in the long term the total impact would be far larger.

So, sure, pour a bucket of water over yourself, or go bungee jumping, or lie in a bathtub of beans, whatever. But only do these things if you connect these fundraisers with meaningful behavior change, otherwise your campaign, even if seemingly fantastically successful, could be doing more harm than good.

You might also like: This week, let s dump a few ice buckets to wipe out malaria too


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The Truth About Timeshares #top #charities #to #donate #to


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The Truth About Timeshares

4 Minute Read

Myth: I can get a great deal on a timeshare and go for vacation every year! Plus, I can always sell it if I get tired of it.
Truth: Timeshares are one of the biggest scams on the market today. Once you are stuck in one, you are stuck in a black hole.

The first word that should come to your head when you hear the word timeshares should be RUN! Run far, far away! If you run fast enough, you can eventually escape that annoying, high-pressure salesperson!

Think about this for a minute. Why in the world would you pay thousands and thousands of your hard-earned dollars for a place with minimal square-footage that you might get the chance to visit for one week each year? Add to that the fact that you have absolutely no equity in the place. And you have to pay extra ongoing “maintenance fees.” And selling it is near impossible. And it’s basically just an expensive, ongoing headache. And, and, and!

Local experts you can trust.

Sounds completely ridiculous, doesn’t it? That’s because it is!

Why All the Buzz?

Timeshares are one of the top sellers in the travel and hospitality industry. Thousands are available and millions of people “own” them. But that doesn’t mean timeshares are a good idea. An article on MarketWatch.com tells us that timeshares are generally marketed and sold to people who really can’t afford them. So if you think you can afford it, you can’t. Even if you really think you can, your money is better off in a cookie jar.

The average cost of a timeshare in the U.S. is $14,500. If you put that money in a mutual fund averaging 12% over 10 years, you would have almost $48,000. Pretty good.

In 20 years, you would have over $178,000. Even better.

In 40 years, you would have over $1.7 million! That’s a lot of free money! Hope you like the vacation house!

Throwing money at a timeshare is not an investment and will not generate money for you. An investment implies that you can eventually sell it and make money. With timeshares, you’re just pre-paying your hotel bill for the next 20 years whether or not you use it.

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