Saturday Six: Episode 215

1. What was the last organization you gave a monetary donation to?

Um... Planned Parenthood. (It turned out to be a huge mistake... I love what they do, but then they bugged me morning, noon and night for more money. So now I almost never donate money.)

2. What was the last charitable thing you volunteered to do?

Ah, well, now. Every Thursday and every sixth Saturday I donate to the community in a really big way. Sometimes I donate a lot, sometimes nothing happens. But I'm there and ready to do this when it does need to be done. Sometimes donating has nothing to do with money.

3. Someone you know comes to you in a bad situation and asks to borrow $10. Do you give them the money even if you think they might not give it back?
Yes, I do. I hope that they do, knowing that they won't. Or, that there is a very high percentage on them not returning it.

4. Take the quiz: How Charitable Are You?
Why not?

5. Do you agree with the quiz’s results?
Well, wait a second... let me finish this first.
Yes, I do. However, there was a problem with the quiz. It was almost completely designed to deal with those who are giving money and only money to charity. There were maybe two questions about donating your time, but otherwise it was all about money. I do once in a while donate money, but I mostly donate time and a specific skill set to the community. I ride a 12-hour shift once a week and then a twelve hour shift every sixth week as well. I will occasionally take a call after work and before the regular night shift comes on. I love doing this and it is well worth it.

6. Should the United States do more to help its own citizens before helping people in other countries?
Actually, while it is nice to assist other countries, we are not doing enough to fix our own problems. True, life is far worse in the Latin and South American countries. True, women are not even as high as third class citizens in many Middle Eastern countries. But we have Americans without education; Americans without jobs; Americans who are caught in the loop of pumping out babies, using drugs, circling in the dole or welfare programs. We have major healthcare issues. We have unreal immigration problems. We have a lot of homeless people.
So tell me why we need to help outside countries' less fortunate people whilst not helping our own?
How Charitable Are You?
Q1. When I pass a beggar on the street I:
1. Happily give him or her all the spare change I have in my pockets.
2. Give a few nickels and dimes, then make a mental note to donate canned goods to my church's soup kitchen.
3. Occasionally give, but often begrudgingly, or just to get the person to stop pestering me.
4. Never give spare change to beggars. They're just going to use it for booze or drugs.

Q2. I model my charitable giving after:
1. Mother Teresa
2. Bill Gates
3. The head of my local volunteer soup kitchen or shelter
4. Ebenezer Scrooge
Q3. My favorite quote about giving or service is:
1. "God loves a cheerful giver." --New Testament
2. "Love your neighbor as yourself." --The Bible
3. "Charity begins at home."
4. "God helps them that help themselves." --Benjamin Franklin

Q4. My favorite charity is a lot like:
1. A local soup kitchen or shelter, so I feel like my contributions have a direct effect on people in my community.
2. Habitat for Humanity, an organization founded on faith-based principles that doesn't discriminate in who it helps.
3. United Way, a large organization that I know does great work, even if I don't know exactly where my money goes.
4. Toys for Tots, a holiday program that will only ask me for donations once a year.

Q5. My attitude about charity is:
1. I must always help those who are less fortunate than me, no matter what my own circumstances are.
2. I try to give what I can, and if I only had more money, I would give more.
3. I've got to look out for myself first.
4. I like to help others, and charitable contributions lower my taxes.
Q6. When I hear about an earthquake or serious flood in another city or country I:
1. Immediately get out my checkbook and make a donation to the Red Cross.
2. Immediately get out my checkbook and donate to a faith-based disaster relief organization.
3. Think about how horrible it is and try to make a small donation.
4. I feel bad for the people in the disaster, but I rarely actually make a donation.
Q7. How much do you typically donate to charity?
1. As much as I can.
2. 10% of my income, or whatever my religious obligation is.
3. Less than 10%.
4. I never donate.

Q8. How often do you spend time volunteering in your community?
1. Once a week or more
2. Once a month
3. Once a year
4. Never

Q9. Would you invest in a socially conscious mutual fund?
1. Only if it outperforms other funds.
2. I'd consider it if the fund does as well as other funds. If you don't get hurt in the process, it's a net gain for society.
3. Yes, I would participate in a fund that invests according to my religious values.
4. Yes, even if it underperforms the market. I view this as a form of charity.
Q10. What is your attitude about volunteering?
1. I volunteer independently whenever I get the chance.
2. I volunteer once in a while with my religious group or my family.
3. I volunteer with my company on special projects or for special events.
4. It is often a waste of time. It just makes the volunteers feel better about themselves without helping people in need.
Q11. My donations to charity are most likely to be to:
1. An anti-poverty or hunger organization.
2. My church or house of worship.
3. An environmental group.
4. An educational or cultural institution.
Q12. When I give, I:
1. Give grudgingly.
2. Give only when asked by the poor.
3. Give without having to be asked, but I'm very selective in who I give to.
4. Give anonymously, without having to be asked.

Quiz: How Charitable Are You?
You scored 32, on a scale of 0 to 36. Here's how to interpret your score:

0 - 9
Stingy Scrooge. You don't give to charity or volunteer your time often. Get some volunteering ideas from Beliefnet members or explore some easy ways to give online.

10 - 18
Occasional Donor. You give when you feel it is necessary or when you are overtaken by compassion, but your sense of charity is not an overarching force in your life. Maybe you need some ideas for how you can give more often or with more meaning. Check out some stories on the charity page or discuss ideas on the message boards.

19 - 27
Faithful Contributor. Your sense of charity and social justice is very tied to your faith. Your charitable actions spring from both your strong sense of compassion and your religious obligations. You look toward religious leaders for guidance in where to contribute and likely participate in church or house of worship fundraisers and volunteer activities. Read up on what your faith has to say about charity and giving or find a religious service agency.

28 - 36
Selfless Giver. Your sense of charity and commitment to helping others transcends everything else in your life. Read about others like you in Beliefnet's
Hometown Heroes feature. Or share your favorite charity on the message boards.


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