I’ve just read in the papers a scathing condemnation of “charities” which harass, pressurise and even coerce people into giving money and then, having succeeded, increase the pressure to squeeze even more from their donors. I am disgusted.
Perhaps I am naïve but, to me, charity is about doing good not being aggressive and greedy, but the today’s perception of “charity” was brought home to me recently when we launched an appeal in a national magazine. We had a reasonable response, perhaps not as good as I had hoped, but what surprised me was that almost a half of donations received were anonymous. Clearly people were keen to help but wanted to avoid having their details sold or passed around on dubious mailing lists.
It goes, almost without saying, that we will never lower our standards and behave in this way – to us this is unethical and completely indefensible.
LIPU-UK is remarkably successful in its prime role of raising funds to support the conservation and protection of birds in Italy – and that is entirely because of its members, but to continue we must do everything we can to preserve the membership and, indeed, to increase its strength. As you know, our numbers are slowly decreasing and we have tried all methods of recruitment we know of, and many that have been suggested by members themselves and none has been very successful.
Of course, our cause is not “mainstream” – not many nations will support bird protection in a country not their own so it will never be easy to appeal to a wide audience and that makes you all the more important. Do you know any friends, acquaintances or anyone else who might share your concern for the birds in Italy and want to do something about it?
In the months ahead I shall be mailing small recruitment packs which have been provided by member, Alan Taylor, and we both hope that these might be useful in spreading our message.
As far as I can tell the decline in our membership is not caused by a loss of interest but by the march of time – the one thing we can do nothing about so your loyalty is truly appreciated – thank you.