In this genuinely weird time of lock-downs and social distancing, rising unemployment and wildly fluctuating markets, we’re rightly most concerned about the lives that the coronavirus contagion threatens. But there are other victims, including those whose social and mental health have been put at risk by the countermeasures that we’re all taking.
And charities, too, are suffering. As donors see their wealth shrinking, they are understandably less inclined to contribute to charitable causes — and especially to those that aren’t directly or indirectly related to COVID-19 — than they would be in a period of soaring stock prices and full employment.
This means that giving to symphonic orchestras and museums and conservation organizations has, on the whole, dropped. Significantly.
We’ve certainly noticed this at the Interpreter Foundation.
We’re not in desperate straits. (That will disappoint some, of course. To them, I simply say that life is tough, and then you die.) Thanks to generous donors and the efforts of our fundraising specialist, Ed Snow, we’ve done pretty well over the past year or so. We have concentrated on raising money for our Witnesses film project and for a rainy-day fund — and we’re in good shape, now, for the immediate future. And I’m confident that, once COVID-19 is behind us — and this too shall pass — the economy will bounce vigorously back.
But new fundraising has hit a standstill right now, just as, I’m confident, it has slowed to a trickle or less for other, similar, organizations.
So I’m writing to make a suggestion: If you haven’t already signed up for AmazonSmile, will you please do so now? Right now? Don’t put it off.
If you don’t sign up with AmazonSmile for the Interpreter Foundation, will you please do it for some other worthy organization?
Money from AmazonSmile won’t make up for the loss of actual donations. It only generates half a cent for every dollar of spending (so that, for instance, a twenty dollar purchase from Amazon.com will only yield ten cents of revenue to your chosen charity). But it will help. And, if enough people do it, it will help considerably. Moreover, as I’ve previously stressed that money isn’t yours. Purchasing through AmazonSmile will cost you not one single extra cent.
If you’re like everybody else I know, you’re tending to do more online purchasing right now. And some of that, at least, is probably through AmazonSmile. By simply doing your purchasing through AmazonSmile rather than the usual Amazon.com — with exactly the same products at exactly the same prices and with exactly the same service — you can help your chosen charity survive and even, perhaps, move forward.
You can learn about AmazonSmile here:
You can also, if you like, watch this brief online video that was kindly created by my friend Tom Pittman: