That old aphorism; “Charity begins at home”, seemed an almost constant refrain in our house. As a young fella, I had absolutely no clue what it meant.
It seemed to me then that there was no need for charity at home because we had a dinner on the table every day so hoping for charity was plain stupid.
These days I live in the full glare of hindsight.
I no longer contribute as I used to to national and international charities no matter how appalling the advertised circumstances.
I look only at the streets of my own town.
Guy I’ve known a long time but, to whom I no longer would give the time of day, has for years made a living supplementing his not insubstantial income by operating as one of three partners in a local charity company. The charity is legitimate. Their activities are above-board and they meet all tax and legislative requirements. Of every euro collected exactly one cent goes to their charity. When the currency was the Irish Pound, a penny went to the charity. This I gleaned from direct involvement during a very brief sojourn which lasted exactly until I discovered the legally permitted scam element.
Charities that depend on administrators no longer receive my one cent.
When the news emerged of Páraic Casey’s sudden and unexpected death, I figured the administrators of his designated charities would be in for a windfall. In times of stress thinking flies right out the window. Skewed thinking and skewed sentiments.
Those in need know nothing of ‘Social Contribution Awards'; same way my mother wouldn’t have. They know even less how to feed their children with them.