Wednesday, November 22, 2006

I Ain't Buying No Goat.

When I climbed the CN Tower earlier this year for the WWF, I thought of bringing my IFAW ball cap for the simple reason that it's my headwear of choice when I'm saving the world. I wasn't sure if that would be frowned upon though, because I didn't know whether charities tend to be competitive between one another. So I decided against it after all so as to not inadvertently plunge the entire proceedings into chaos.

Well, some charities must have some level of communication because last week I received a World Vision Canada catalogue. I've never had a single solitary thing to do with that charity, so someone somewhere ratted out my personal info, it seems.

Well, better this than the offers for diplomas, mortgages and pecker pills that I routinely get in my e-mail inbox. So I decide to have a flip, and you can too right here.

Of course, when Christine handed it to me, I thought it was a standard catalogue, like one of the holiday ones you'd get from Sears. Imagine my surprise at the headline "A Holiday Heifer Brings Milk And More". No doubt, but I don't recall Christine ever lamenting the fact that we don't own our own cow. There's another that states "Pigs Make Plump And Perfect Presents". Ha! Finally an answer to the question about what to buy the person who has everything! I'd make a bet that (s)he doesn't have that!

Once my spell of bewilderment wore off and I clued in to what I was actually reading, I liked the idea. They're certainly not messing around! While you have several modestly priced options, you could also shell out a cool $15,000 to drill a well!

That's somewhat out of my reach. So here's the plan: With my pay of December 22nd, I'm going to select something a little more...affordable...and give my Christmas gift that way. Then starting December 26th, I'm going to start hoarding nickels. And whatever total I come to by Christmas 2007, I shall donate.

I have no idea what total I'll reach. I just know that from week to week, I won't miss a couple of nickels out of my wallet. Besides, that thing's American-made so the change pouch on it is rather small. They don't need room to store loonies and toonies, right? So for me, space is sometimes an issue.

And it gets heavy too! Sometimes I have so much change back there that my wallet weighs a quarter ton. My pants end up hanging halfway down my arse, like those kids that loiter in shopping malls wear them. Lousy punks!

But I digress...

While I'm all for this concept, I know I won't be able to bring myself to buy animals. I understand the potential benefits, but no can do. I probably don't have to explain why.

World Vision have enough options involving health and education that I doubt I'll struggle to find something to get behind. I particularly like the category "gifts that multiply" in reference to gifts is matched multiple times by sponsors and such. Example:

Mom kept you warm and safe. Show her how much you care by clothing 25 children in her name. Thanks to donations from Canadian companies, your gift will multiply 6 times in impact to give brand new clothes and sturdy shoes to impoverished children in poor countries like Georgia, Romania, Armenia, and others. You'll help protect these little ones from sickness, embarrassment, and poor school attendance. And for many, these could be their first new articles of clothing ever!

Sounds good and fits right into my "gain without pain" strategies. So when the day comes, I'm going to try to maximize my bang for my bucks. In the meantime, anyone interested can read the FAQs.

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