PHILANTHROPY is based on voluntary action for the common good. It is a tradition of giving and sharing that is primary to the quality of life. To assure that philanthropy merits the respect and trust of the general public, and that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in the not-for-profit organizations and causes they are asked to support, we declare that all donors have these rights:
Donating $1000 to the WLSFA
To be informed of the organization's mission, of the way the organization intends to use donated resources, and of its capacity to use donations effectively for their intended purposes.
To be informed of the identity of those serving on the organization's governing board, and to expect the board to exercise prudent judgment in its stewardship responsibilities.
To be assured their gifts will be used for the purposes for which they were given.
To receive appropriate acknowledgement and recognition.
To be assured that information about their donations is handled with respect and with confidentiality to the extent provided by law.
To expect that all relationships with individuals representing organizations of interest to the donor will be professional in nature.
To be informed whether those seeking donations are volunteers, employees of the organization or hired solicitors.
To have the opportunity for their names to be deleted from mailing lists that an organization may intend to share.
To feel free to ask questions when making a donation and to receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers.
I'm going to add one more:
Don't do this to your donors - particularly when they're YOUR PEOPLE.
That is a scanned image of the check I donated to the Weight Loss Surgery Foundation of America or WLSFA organization.
I was not home twenty-four hours before I received a letter from the CEO of the foundation and this image with the letters V O I D enscribed across it. I have not slept much yet - so - forgive my even sharing this with you -
I especially like how I wronged the sponsors. Because many of them are also mine. (*See sidebar. I love my sponsors. Click their links. Buy stuff.)
That feels really good, Antonia. That makes my heart swell with pride and stuff.
It's a day later and I've received no response as to what I did, aside from hand the WLSFA $1000 in a non-confrontational manner. I actually had to beg them to take it - we were skipped over in the first round of donation announcements - they took it publicly and gave it back like this.
The event itself? Was a non-issue. I only have two or three issues that I'd concern myself with -- and they wouldn't involve this check. At all. One issue was big enough for me to want to blog - but - I've refrained so far.
My bariatric support group's fundraising is obviously not wanted in this exclusionary non-profit. I do not know if it's legal to shun a cash donation from legal fundraising. Lawyers?
As a group we are more than disgusted. I have spent hours promoting this event, and spent thousands of dollars, and frankly I sit here ashamed that I asked my peers to donate to the cause.
Consider for a second how much I spent just for myself -
I am more sickened that I suggested friends JOIN ME at the event -- and asked them to spend their hard-earned money on the event as well just to be shunned so specifically. Friends brought husbands -- this isn't cheap.
I am not a happy MM. I apologize to YOU. We learned a hard lesson here.
Do your research before investing non-profits!
Start here: firstname.lastname@example.org I can't help you with this. They didn't tell me what I did.
We have have offers to take our GOOD elsewhere, of course. I got offers of help in the middle of the night. And we will, if you donated or made a purchase - your money is going to another reputable non-profit. Thank you.
When I saw the below *graphic photos last week from UK news sites, I was not surprised -- and considered sharing them to the blog -- but I did not. However they have made them here to the good old US of A and it appears that this is what Mr. Paul Mason of England would desire - is publicity.
Mr. Mason was A Man Of Very Large Size. :)
He nearly reached 1000 pounds at his highest weight, and with the assistance of bariatric surgery he is now down an amazing 644 pounds and left with a massive amount of excess skin. This is obviously quite a feat -- and as a WLS patient yourself -- I am sure you can imagine the skin issues are inexplicably awful.
If you recall, (as maybe one or two of you out there in the interweb do...or not?) I started blogging (... in 2005) hoping to save any pennies I earned doing so for "plastic surgery fund!" (No, I never had any plastics.)
Reconstructive surgery after massive weight loss is not inexpensive, nor easy. I completely understand Mr. Mason's reasoning for throwing his photos out there.
And, I'm throwing them here. Maybe someone will take him on.
By the time you read this, I'll be en route to Las Vegas for #WLSFA2013 the Weight Loss Surgery Foundation of America 2013 Meet + Greet. Likely, I will be drooling on myself and hopefully not singing "Annnnnd I Will ALWAYS LOVE You" and getting escorted off my plane. Just saying.
I am there. This is my lowest adult weight. I was here once before at one-year post gastric bypass many years ago for a very short time, I think it lasted one day. My BMI is 26.2 at this weight, and I am just a few pounds away from a "normal" BMI, which I have never seen.
I'll take it, even if it takes fooooorrreeevveeerrrr to get each ounce off at this stage.