From ‘Why is giving so hard?’article by Lee Wei Ling, 18 July 2010 Sunday Times
…Why must Mr Franz (European of the Year who cycled 130km and walked 50km a day to raise funds to fight HIV/AIDs) torture himself physically in order to raise funds for charity? Can’t the organisations and individuals who donate money to him, donate directly to the causes or organisations he champions?
…Ironically,to make his physical feats possible, Mr Franz has to incur the cost of a supporting network…Why spend money unnecessarily in order to raise money?
..That people need to do this goes entirely against common sense… Perhaps they are making a naked appeal to our sympathies.
…Why does it seem sometimes as though we have lost all sense of what is important in life? Perhaps I was feeling irritable that day because I had got up on the wrong side of the bed that morning — only I sleep on the floor, not a bed.
Er..OK..too much information there, Ms Director of National Neuroscience Institute. Nobody needs to know your sleeping habits, unless of course you’re overstating your humble living habits in order to make a point, it being lost on me halfway through the article. How people raise money to support their causes, be it swimming across the English Channel or hopping on one leg blindfolded up Mount Kilimanjaro, is really not up to us to decide, nor are such feats embarked on out to make us sympathise with them (since they’re completely voluntary acts and are asking for it if anything goes awry). Whether it’s an attempt at personal glorification or not, no matter how perilous and silly the act may be, only the end result that the right charities get the right benefits matters. You can’t raise funds without publicity, by any means possible. Even Jack Neo would appreciate that. Or perhaps one could raise awareness for narcisstic disorders by breaking the Singaporean record for spending most nights on a cold hard floor. An unwanted declaration reminiscent of this Monty Python sketch about Four Yorkshiremen bragging about how poor they used to be.