News: Fans Angry Over Jill Duggar Dillard and Derick Dillard Donation Use

News: Fans Angry Over Jill Duggar Dillard and Derick Dillard Donation Use September 12, 2015

newsby Suzanne Titkemeyer

ETA: Perhaps I might have to eat my words about the Duggar Studios just being the kids trying to get paid. This story from the Inquistr seems to say it’s a family money grab – Duggar Family Tries To Recreate Reality Series Magic With Amy Duggar Wedding Video, Fails Miserably

Several days ago I took a look at all the major media sites claiming that the Duggar family was going broke because of Jill and Derick asking for donations for their El Salvador mission venture. It looks like people are just getting angrier over the possibility that the donated mission monies being used for personal expenses. The two recent back to back trips back to Arkansas by the family for the Bates wedding followed by cousin Amy Duggar’s wedding seems to have stirred up a hornets nest of people thinking they are funding all this flying about that has nothing to do with the El Salvador mission.  There has been scant information from either the Duggars or the Dillards on how these funds will be spent. What do you think? Do the people that donated have a right to expect the money be spent a certain way or are they out of luck because they didn’t initially question how it would be spent? Is this one of those let the buyer beware situation or do they have a legitimate point? Shouldn’t those fans have done their due diligence on how the Dillards planned on spending the money?

More on the fan outrage from WKBW News in Buffalo, New York :

Fans have complained on Facebook, asking where the money they donated was going and asking to see pictures of, you know, the mission trip.

And lo and behold — this Instagram “throwback Thursday” image appeared.

We still don’t know if Jill and Derick used their own money to make those trips back to the States, though.

and from Ring of Fire radio. They shared this screen cap from Facebook of fan upset on Derick and Jill’s Facebook page:


The Dillards have started sharing photos and information on social media in the face of this criticism. According to this site at least –

The Duggars are fighting back online! After receiving backlash for allegedly spending their mission funds on luxury, “19 Kids and Counting couple Jill Duggar and Derick Dillard have now addressed the issue by simply updating their Instagram and Twitter accounts, as well as their family blog.

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  • Karen the rock whisperer

    Caveat endor. There are countless ways to spend money that make real, positive change in the lives of people in need, both here and abroad. Some of those have a Christian focus, like Habitat for Humanity (which works all over the world now). If you really felt it was necessary to fund a non-transparent mission trip by a couple of celebrities, you might well have gotten taken… but I have very little sympathy.

  • Don’t know what they expected. It’s not like either of them have any real training in things that would make them successful missionaries to poverty stricken people. I don’t think either of them actually speak Spanish, or know how to build (or teach) in schools.
    I’ve also read that some employees of a posh hotel took pictures of the Dillards there. And a pic on their Instagram said they were enjoying time at a beach. If I’d donated to their cause, it would be upsetting to see them “vacationing” on my dime. Though it is worrisome how grammatically wrong some of their followers are. :/

  • rob11751

    i still dont understand why anyone would send those fools a cent, that whole family brings reproach upon God, for God sakes stop donating to the duggars the dillards and all that riff raff , all they are looking out for is themselves and other peoples money STOP supporting them or they will never stop asking

  • SAO

    I think people should question how money they donated is being spent. That said, they probably can’t do much about it without an explicit promise/contract. My bet is that Derrick and Jill are doing what millions of other mission trips did, except with less experience and more eyes on them.

  • I give them a pass on attending weddings. Most truly poor people would skip a wedding trip if it involved plane travel from another country, but their parents could have paid for it so I let it go.

  • Okay *those* things are worthy of being angry over

  • Nea

    I don’t think either of them actually speak Spanish

    They’re taking Spanish lessons. Right now. After they’ve gone to the field. Apparently that’s part of what they’re asking people to pay for, and it’s part of the mission because they’re then trying to evangelize their teacher.

  • Yeah. Because Groupon doesn’t have year long memberships to language learning sites for $25….classy

  • Poster Girl

    Anyone who still trusts the Duggars enough to give them a dime has only themselves to blame. Conservative Christians have numerous conservative Christian organizations they can help: Compassion International, World Vision, Help One Now. If they’re not so married to the idea of Conservative Christianity, they could go with UNICEF, Save the Children, or Heifer International (all charities I support). My church, the United Church of Christ, has a charitable arm called Church World Services. There are local charities, women’s shelters. Hell, even a scientifically inaccurate slut-shaming CPC would probably do more tangible good than bankrolling the Dillards, neither of whom has ever had to worry about where their next meal was coming from.

  • Mel

    A couple of very young, inexperienced celebrities at that. I would have expected a little better from Derick since he as actual work experience at a business and a college degree, but then, I didn’t expect enough difference to hand over cash. Jill doesn’t even have that since her play-time-practice-midwifery career didn’t involve the financial aspect of that.

  • Mel


    OT: Rosetta Stone is expensive, but well worth the price. We used it at one of the schools I taught at with our ELL students to facilitate English learning and it was AWESOME! My husband and I bought it and it has helped my Spanish speaking skills quite a bit. Plus, the price could be reduced by giving it to her siblings after the two of them learned enough Spanish.

  • Mel

    My husband and I “registered” with Heifer International. We got a lot of sheep. I’m still happy about that.

  • theresa

    Work is anathema to any Duggar or anyone that comes into their orbit. They are all grifters. You have to be insane to give any of them a nickel.

  • SoRefined

    I think it is fair to say that when explicitly soliciting funds for a mission, which is what it seems like they have done, it’s fair for people to ask how that’s going. I mean, if it was completely made up (not saying it is, just trying to think of the extreme circumstance) and monies were collected, I think it would be prosecutable fraud, so clearly there is some expectation of accountability when funds are given for a specific purpose.

    However, it also seems like this group of people has access to a lot of money, so it seems doubtful they would need the monies from these donations for personal air travel, even international.

  • Lilly Vincent

    they are having a nice lifestyle thanks to you people that have donated, couldn’t they have learned the language at home? Jill has been studying her midwifery for many years now it is a 2 year program 3 at the most I count at least 5 years so she’s still studying on your dime? and they should be living local in El Salvador not in a fancy American hotel, and who paid for her sister and friend to travel and have a nice vacation with them? this is a non-profit the government should be taking away their papers this is not a non profit it is a job with a nice paycheck that their not paying taxes on.

  • Allison the Great

    I have wanted to get that to learn German and French but I was dissuaded by the cost. If it is well worth the money then I might consider saving up.

  • Tyrone Jones

    You can be 100% sure they are misusing your Donations if they have not yet put up concrete proof in Documents that they aren’t. Yes, by now they or their accountant or Lawyer would have show proof otherwise.

  • Tyrone Jones

    Loved it for your last comment regarding grammar.

  • paganheart

    I sing in the choir of an ELCA church which sponsors a missionary family living in Ethiopia. About once a quarter, they provide a written update and pictures that go into the church newsletter. From the looks of those reports, they live in a very modest house and put nearly all their resources into their work (which mostly consists of supporting a school and medical clinic in a small village.) Once a year, they provide an update on their mission for the church’s annual report, which includes a financial breakdown of how their monies are used and spent. Once every two years, they fly back to the states for a few weeks to visit family and speak to the congregations who sponsor them, giving presentations on how their efforts are making a difference.

    When they spoke at my church last year, they mentioned how being a missionary meant missing things like weddings and graduations, and how much they loved and appreciated their families and friends for understanding when they couldn’t be there. I am told that when the missionary husband’s father passed away a few years ago, he missed his father’s burial, but the family chose to wait several months to hold the memorial service, so the missionary family could attend during a regularly scheduled trip rather than spending money on a separate trip.

    This is what missionary work should be: sacrificial, frugal, responsible and accountable. Independent “missionaries” like Jill and Derrick, like so many “independent” fundie churches, are accountable to no one. Thus the situation is ripe for fraud, waste, and abuse of money and resources . Not that these things don’t occur in established denominations, but at least people are watching and there will be consequences if someone is caught being unethical.

    Given the numerous examples of fundie televangelists living millionaire lifestyles off the donations of their (often impoverished) viewers; and megachurches spending tens of millions of dollars on luxurious buildings and facilities, while doing little to nothing to actually feed, heal and care for the poor in their communities (as the man they supposedly worship commanded them to), I can’t help but be suspicious of Jill and Derrick’s “mission trip” as well. (Though I still hope this ultimately is about running away from the clutches of Jim Bob and the ATI cult.)

  • SallyR

    I’ve known several missionaries (both medical and religious) and the religious ones at least would never even CONSIDER moving to the “mission field” without being fluent in the language. They also work long and hard hours trying to improve the living situation of those they are serving (such as access to clean water, housing, food etc.)Seriously, taking “language classes” in El Salvador will not help them “spread the gospel” unless they speak fluently, which can take many years. Luckily for the people of El Salvador, they won’t be all that successful on their “mission” because, really, who would take them seriously? I’m guessing the people they will try to convert will just nod their heads and agree- because most are Catholic anyway, and consider themselves Christians, even if the Duggars do not.

  • Nea

    most are Catholic anyway, and consider themselves Christians, even if the Duggars do not

    That is a REALLY huge point to me. The Duggar/Dillards are being careful to not truly challenge their own beliefs (much less their extremely weak powers of persuasion) by talking to non-Christians. They’re basically trying to change one kind of Christian into another kind of Christian and calling it a “mission” and “spreading the word of Jesus.”

    Ironically, Catholics are much more familiar with the actual Bible than Gothardites are. For one thing, those centuries of ritual and tradition also include centuries of dissent, discussion, and even some evolution of viewpoints. No cult with a living leader is allowed that kind of critical self-examination.

  • Joy

    My parents were missionaries in Central America in the 1970’s. They didn’t come back for weddings or when Mom had TB. She recovered in hospital down there instead. They didn’t live in hotels either – they lived in a mountain village among the people that they came to serve.

  • BeenThereDoneThat

    He is using the money to fix his teeth and buy food so he is strong enough to make lots and lots of babies.

  • rob11751

    thats because your parents were probably real missionaries committed to serving God and helping people, i dont believe or trust anything that has to do with duggars or dillards, they all seem to serve themselves

  • pinkie

    If the Dillards ever get into a real theological discussion, the Catholics will probably wipe the floor with them.

  • Mel

    It really is. The teaching methods used in the program are very sound and geared to help long-term retention. The program does teach reading, listening, writing and speaking skills. Part of the expense is that the pack comes with headphone/microphone combination that is quite costly, but needed for the analysis of speech patterns.

  • Mel

    Plus, you need to understand the culture of the area. I’m guessing that the fact that Dillards are very young and have no actual skill set that will help the locals will make them – at best – a form of mild amusement for people to listen to their attempts to explain how their beliefs are noticeably different from Catholicism in HS-level Spanish.

  • Mel

    We may be seeing the breaking away process. I suspect the Duggars are holding out carrots in terms of airplane tickets in an attempt to keep the Dillards attached to the family.

  • Mel

    Jill’s midwife program in the USA was not an actual program. She was studying as a direct-entry midwife or a CPM which is a completely meaningless title. She had to attend a certain number of births (usually less than 200 total) with increasing levels of “responsibility”. There’s no classes, no tests, no licences and no oversight.

    To become an actual trained midwife in the USA with a CNM, Jill would need to complete a 4 year degree to get a BS/RN, then she would need to work in a hospital for a few years to gain all the clinical skills expected. After that, she could enroll is a Master’s program to earn her Certified Nurse Midwife degree.

    Since Jill graduated from a pretend homeschooling program that is severely deficient in math and science – I say this as a former HS teacher – she would likely need at least 1 year of remedial classes at a community college followed by an associates’ degree before she’d be a viable candidate to be accepted into a BS/RN program in the first place.

    So…Jill’s got about 7 years of study ahead of her to be an actual midwife.

  • Mel

    I take that back- there is a test. She only needed to attend a total of 50 births – less than my cousin who’s studying to be a OB/GYN attend in his first week at the hospital.

    Here’s the website. I’m willing to be most people could pass the test after a few hours of studying the papers online.

  • Mel

    Jill plans on being a midwife as well as a missionary. That scares the shit out of me because she’s going to be facing birth situations that she’s had NO preparation for – malnourished moms with potentially malformed pelvis bones, non-existent prenatal care, severe anemia due to parasites, TB and HIV.

    Being a pretend medical professional is scary enough in the USA where an ambulance with an EMT can transfer the mom/baby to a hospital – and usually the OB/GYN can save the mom if not the baby.

    A different way of looking at it: Jill and Israel are alive today because an OB/GYN performed an emergency CS after Jill labored for 70 hours – 50 of which was after Israel passed meconium which means he was in distress for 2 days. If they were in El Salvador, they may not be alive today.

  • Suzanne Harper Titkemeyer

    Wondering now if I should have done that to learn Spanish instead of going to the local college. I’m sitting in a room filled with 18 year olds that mostly had Spanish in high school.

  • ShinyZubat

    I’m told it’s good for Spanish and other languages that are similar (ish) to English. I wouldn’t recommend it for Asian languages though, if that ever strikes your fancy. My husband and I used it for Japanese for a while but had to give it up because it left too many things unexplained. Vocabulary was okay, but after a while the grammar was just indecipherable.

  • Mermaid Warrior

    Agreed. Even if the two didn’t use donation money to pay for their flights, to my knowledge, they don’t have special skills or experience. Why would you give them money? I don’t donate to a Kickstarter project unless I trust that the group running it will be able to finish the project and do it well.

  • Mermaid Warrior

    I would pay money to see the locals and the Dillards interacting with each other.

  • Mermaid Warrior

    So, you’re saying Jill is about as legit as one of those dolphin-assisted births?

  • Mermaid Warrior

    People are right to ask how the donation money is being spent, but they should’ve questioned it before donating money. Why would you donate money if you don’t know what it’s gonna be spent on? And I’m wondering why they donated in the first place. The Dillards are a reality TV celebrity couple. Do they have much experience or skill for this line of work? Even if a person has good intentions, it’s a waste of money to donate to people or programs that don’t know what they’re doing.

  • Kitty

    Donating to a missionaries is gross anyway. I don’t care what good things they do, they have an ulterior motive, which is to supplant the local religion with their own. It’s bait and switch, and certainly not done out of good will. I volunteer at a homeless shelter where churches take turns preparing the meals. It’s abhorrent watching the evangelicals bothering people with their witnessing because these downtrodden accepted a meal and some socks. It’s obvious that they are there to get Heaven points, not help their brothers and sisters.

  • SAO

    It’s awful for Russian, because there’s no explanation and the grammar is so complex. As an adjunct to a good textbook, it’s probably not that bad.

  • SAO

    Lol! I took Russian in grad school. It was an undergrad course and full of freshmen. I and the one other grad student gazed with amazement at the immaturity of the other people in the class.

  • ShinyZubat

    Yeah, for my husband at least it was good way to get his feet wet, so to speak. But eventually, you have supplement or just ditch it entirely.

  • Nea

    Undoubtedly. The question is if anyone can get past the Gothardite thought-stopping brainwashing in the first place. Jill has been raised all her life in the cult and it hasn’t sunk in yet that the fame is over.

    If/when she ever realizes her true lack of significance in the wider world and glimpses reality outside the Gothardite bubble, it’s going to be devastating for her.

  • Nea

    This is why Jill is apparently going to finally complete her Certified Pretend Midwife training, so she can babble in broken Spanish at women in labor to “win” them for Billy. Because women in labor are totally up to having deep theological conversions.

    What’s troublesome is that the closer Jill gets to having that mail-in-these-box-tops license, the closer she is to start committing negligent homicide, I mean, overseeing God’s ineffable and stern judgement for some unknown sin in those women’s lives. But at least Jill can pass on the good news of the gospel before someone bleeds out, strangles in the cord, or otherwise draws their last breath.

  • Nea

    Yup. Jill is, to be blunt, going to commit negligent homicide. It’s not a matter of if. It’s a matter of when.

  • Nea


  • Mel

    Actually, less. By presenting herself as a trained midwife, she may encourage women to deliver farther away from trained medical professionals than they would if she were a dolphin.

  • Mermaid Warrior

    Yeah, missionary work has always come off as a little sleazy to me. And it’s not just changing the local religion, missionaries also often seek to change the culture to be more like their own.

  • Eileen Farner Beyer

    How does updating their twitter accounts explain their using funded money for their own personal gain???

  • Eileen Farner Beyer

    Come on…..whose dime do you think they are using other than yours? They dont have paying jobs and JB and M are not supporting them. Also, I thought the beach was a no-no.

  • Eileen Farner Beyer

    Also, Spanish is an easy language to master.

  • Astrin Ymris

    If you give money to a private individual to fund their mission trip and/or international adoption, you need to realize up front that there’s almost zero accountability. You have to take their word for it that they’re using the funds for the stated purpose.

    That’s why it’s best to give to a registered charity– and check its rating with BBB or Charity Navigator before you open your pocketbook.

  • Mermaid Warrior

    Maybe they don’t know how things work.

  • Val

    I think that the fact that they returned two times to the USA doesen’t necessarily mean that they are using the mission’s money: the first time they returned mainly to film the documentary for TLC so it is possible that TLC paid the flight, and the second time it is possible that they used their own money. I also think, though, that, since they received money for the mission, that it would be better to make clear how they are spending the money

  • gimpi1

    My family decided to register with Heifer International, and pool our stocking-stuffer budget to get two goats last year. It’s a win-win.

    We also sponsor through both World Vision and Save the Children. And, most of us aren’t Christian. Somehow, I don’t think the people getting clean water and/or livestock care.

  • opinions are subjective

    Are they converting Catholics to their cult? Are they just going visiting to random camps where other charities are actually doing work to help? Why aren’t they being funded by their cult, The group where Josh is supposedly in rehab are funding a guy who is wanted for rape accusations from one of their female followers. What a messed up bunch of phony televangelist. There are many charities down there doing wonderful work, the Jesuits have been down there for decades as well as protestant groups. I know the Bon Secours sisters have also been down there for decades, building schools, getting clean water, teaching agriculture and healthcare, and really making a difference. When you donate they give you a report on where the money is being spent and on all the help they are giving families and children. You get a spreadsheet that breaks down each item, tells you how much is administrative and how much goes directly to those in need. The Dillard non-profit was supposedly set up by Jim Bob, and there is no reason they can’t show how much they have, where the money is being spent and how much is actually going toward project that help the locals. A throwback Thursday photo is not exactly updating anyone on what the heck they are doing. So far all I’ve heard is that the baby is adjusting to the food and culture better than the parents. I think their fans and especially those who donated should get an audit of the funds and how they’re spent.

  • Lana

    Flying from guatemala to arkansas isn’t that much money. the distance is relatively short, all things considered. I am far more concerned that they are trying to convert Catholics to evangelical Christianity than I am that they are wasting fans money because (1) I don’t think that two trips to Arkansas counts as an absorbent amount of money and (2) I’m guessing a lot of this is self-funded either from the Duggars or else money they made from the TV shows. That said, I do think that Jill and Derick should not raise money from fans from the simple standpoint that it is easier to be transparent with people who get your letters than it is with people you can’t trust to share letters with. (I understand why they can’t seem to tell us that they live in Guatemala, given their fame, but if you can’t even tell us that, then how can you be transparent with our money?) P.S. I also share Aletha’s concerns about their training. It’s not that everyone has or needs to be a trained social worker, trained teacher, trained nurse, etc. to work in developing countries, but as a whole, just going over there, without a specific training, is bad, so in general, I prefer to give my support to those I know have the skills to do the job.)

  • C Ellison

    My brother and his wife were missionaries in the Philippines and Romania. No way were they able to fly back to the states – they were there for the duration. My sister-in-law gave birth in the Philippines, they missed family weddings, all the holidays, etc… Each time we didn’t see them for a couple of years.

    Of course they are not celebrities. I’m so sick of all the double talking Duggar bunch.

  • YaddaYadda

    It’s actually caveat emptor.. but I feel ya! ;o)

    There is so much information out there about the Duggars that it’s literally impossible not to trip over them on a daily news basis. If people didn’t want to heed the warnings from numerous stories out there, they have no one to blame but themselves..

  • BondGurl7

    People pull this kind of scam on GoFundMe quite often now…just saying.