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Unread 10-25-2002, 09:30 AM   #1
Jude
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Fundraising Tactics

Unless someone can inform me otherwise, from all my reading of Jewish life over the millenia, Jews gave tzedaka for hachnosas kalla, for yeshivos, for all sorts of causes, directly to those in need or to those who fundraised for them. There were no dinners, no luncheons, no chinese auctions, no teas, no art auctions, no raffles, no gimmicks whatsoever.

Why is it necessary to have all these fundraising techniques today when they were never necessary before? Or, is it possible that they are still unnecessary? Or, will you say that if they had an auction way back when in Cracow or Budapest or Alexandria, they would have made more money, and smart us figured out the way to do it? Is the enormous expenditure of time and money justified? Like preparing months in advance for a dinner or auction, the mailings, the entertainment, etc.?
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Unread 10-25-2002, 09:57 AM   #2
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People today feel better about donating something if they think they are getting an immediate result of some sort, no matter how superficial it is.
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Unread 10-25-2002, 11:44 AM   #3
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I think the reason may be because in the Jewish communities in those times the leaders of the community taxed every jew, meaning they had no choice about giving. today thats not the case. secondly, the ammounts that were raised then were percentage wise, much much less then today.
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Unread 10-25-2002, 12:01 PM   #4
Jude
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no choice about giving? haven't you read all the stories about the town misers? there may have been a communal tax which went towards certain communal needs, but that was separate from individual tzedaka. Remember the story in which the town wanted to give the collectors from a communal fund so as not to go around collecting, and R' Levi Yitzchok said: I told you to come to me with NEW takkonos. This is an old one, for in Sedom they didn't allow people to go around collecting.

why was less money raised back then, percentage- wise? because their needs were less? because our needs are more?
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Unread 10-25-2002, 12:10 PM   #5
yehonasan
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Maybe such techniques are necessary today b/c we are part of society that is sustained by entertainment -- whether it is sports, movies, music etc.

Maybe we need to be entertained in order to give? Almost like we have to get something in order to give?
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Unread 10-25-2002, 12:23 PM   #6
Jude
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should we be encouraging that? it has a price of course, that thousands of dollars given towards a fundraising event, go to the event and not to the tzedaka
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Unread 10-25-2002, 01:54 PM   #7
Torah613
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jude
Remember the story in which the town wanted to give the collectors from a communal fund so as not to go around collecting, and R' Levi Yitzchok said: I told you to come to me with NEW takkonos. This is an old one, for in Sedom they didn't allow people to go around collecting.
Source for this story?
I believe they tell it about the Gro...
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Unread 10-25-2002, 02:07 PM   #8
masbir
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It is a famous famous story on reb LY and it is mentioned in alll collections on RLY. Even in the book Hagoen this story is not attributed to GRa! And it is not Gra story what did he have with community?
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Unread 10-25-2002, 02:18 PM   #9
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As for the tzedaka money going to pay for the event and overhead, don't worry: They thought of that one a very long time ago. ;-)

If an event costs let's say $20,000, they know they will be making several times that amount, more than would ever have been collected with people knocking on doors.

I was recently at a Federation Luncheon for Major Donors. (I wasn't one of them.) The food cost money, the speaker they got cost about $2,000, the pwoerpoint presentation cost money. But they raised $190,000.
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Unread 10-25-2002, 02:47 PM   #10
Jude
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that wasn't exactly news for me, that they cover their costs plus much more. That's obvious, or we're all wasting our time and money.

Well, maybe when I decide how to allocate my tzedaka money, I should keep this in mind and give to those individuals and mosdos with zero or next to zero fundraising costs. This way my tzedaka money goes directly towards the cause, rather than towards the means of fundraising for the cause. Seems like more bang for my buck, mitzva-wise.
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Unread 10-25-2002, 02:53 PM   #11
Torah613
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Quote:
Originally posted by masbir
It is a famous famous story on reb LY and it is mentioned in alll collections on RLY. Even in the book Hagoen this story is not attributed to GRa! And it is not Gra story what did he have with community?
Can you point me where to look? [Not disagreeing (Chas Vesholom), just asking].
I saw it attributed to the Gro in Sorei Hameoh v 2 p 34-5 (not the best source, I agree...).
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Unread 10-25-2002, 02:57 PM   #12
Jude
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One book that has it is a book in Yiddish, a series called Vunderliche Maasiyos, the one on R' L.Y.
p.182
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Unread 10-25-2002, 03:05 PM   #13
Torah613
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Quote:
Originally posted by masbir
. Even in the book Hagoen this story is not attributed to GRa! And it is not Gra story what did he have with community?
Interesting, the books you read. But you're not that boki - just found it there in v 2 p 740-1 .
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Unread 10-25-2002, 03:15 PM   #14
leochana
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hashkeit loi oochal:
shame on both of you masbir and T613 for reading and quoting from that book/pashkevil vehineni moiche al zeh bechol hatoikef.

Veyodua the letter of the Noam Elimelech's son [printed in the back od NE]about not reading pashkevilin.
Mistam you saw the Novominsker's letter in Yeshurun.
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Unread 10-26-2002, 07:44 PM   #15
masbir
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I dont know from what to be more ashmed, from not reading th book so thoroughly (Torah613) or reading it all (leochono). Ladovoni, I dont do many thing in the Tzetel koton either.
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Unread 10-26-2002, 07:48 PM   #16
masbir
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Pretzel, maybe he reads to much of you!
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Unread 10-26-2002, 08:13 PM   #17
Torah613
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Quote:
Originally posted by masbir
I dont know from what to be more ashmed, from not reading th book so thoroughly (Torah613) or reading it all (leochono). Ladovoni, I dont do many thing in the Tzetel koton either.
I didn't read it thoroughly (as a matter of fact, I didn't read most of it (yet?)), but when Masbir wrote that it wasn't there, I decided to look, took me about 3 minutes to find it...
As for the macho'oh - nu, nu, vet men mir shmeisen. And yes, I saw the letter in Yeshurun (and also many articles blasting the book).
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Unread 10-26-2002, 08:23 PM   #18
masbir
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So you also own the book? kol boehu lo yushuvun!
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Unread 10-26-2002, 08:52 PM   #19
Torah613
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Maybe a special place will be built for both of us.
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Unread 10-26-2002, 09:18 PM   #20
masbir
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Just bring your library with you
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Unread 10-26-2002, 09:58 PM   #21
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I'll try... But I expect you to do the same - then we'll pool resources!
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Unread 10-26-2002, 10:24 PM   #22
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Back to the original topic (sorry for breaking up a most stimulating side issue...) I think that in these days, where the Cheder is no longer in a wooden shack with one Gemara for everyone; where the Shul is intended to bring in people estranged from Yiddishkeit, where simplicity and frugality are almost viewed as a Chillul Hashem... the method of Tzedaka also has changed.

The Meshulachim's travel expenses are also a "price" for the ability to give Tzedaka. The "price" of the event is the same idea... and if Tzedaka can be associated with such beautiful occasions, it is a benefit. Look at it this way: I could go to a Chinese Auction for the very pleasure of attending such events, or I could go because now I ALSO get to give Tzedaka.
Under normal circumstances I would pay $100 to go to a concert, I will choose to go to a benefit concert where I get the best of both worlds. I think that today people WANT to attend dinners, so our Mosdos "Chap Arein" (take the opportunity) and make it a fundraising program as well.
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Unread 10-26-2002, 10:35 PM   #23
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<Well, maybe when I decide how to allocate my tzedaka money, I should keep this in mind and give to those individuals and mosdos with zero or next to zero fundraising costs. This way my tzedaka money goes directly towards the cause, rather than towards the means of fundraising for the cause. Seems like more bang for my buck, mitzva-wise.>

one can argue the opposite. when you give money to such a cause for every dollar you gave the cause now has a dollar extra (poshut!), but when giving to a tzedoko that is also staging an event your dollar is bringing in potentially many dollars, as through the staging of event many more people will be aware and motivated etc to donate. you can put your money in your safe or in a term deposit/investment
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Unread 10-26-2002, 11:43 PM   #24
Torah613
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Quote:
Originally posted by leochana
hashkeit loi oochal:
shame on both of you masbir and T613 for reading and quoting from that book/pashkevil vehineni moiche al zeh bechol hatoikef.
...
Mistam you saw the Novominsker's letter in Yeshurun.
If I were in the business of being mochoh on other peoples reading material, I would be mocheh on you for reading and quoting that particular volume of Yeshurun, which contains what one of the writers wrote about ... VAKML.
IOW, kshot atzmoch etc.
Kol tuv.

Last edited by Torah613; 10-26-2002 at 11:48 PM.
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Unread 10-27-2002, 12:12 AM   #25
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About Tzedaka in general the givers intention etc., although important (as the Rambam explains the 8 levels vechuli), is secondary to the main thing: the poor person receiving the money. As the Rebbe quotes many times the Chazal that if a person looses money and the poor person finds it, the looser gets rewarded for the Tzedaka. Same would apply here. Although it would be great if everyone would donate just as much without all the events, but the fact is that much much more comes in, and for the poor person that's the main thing, therefore such events are very good.
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