Today’s Editorial for December 10: Ask for donations politely

Last week in our editorial space, we asked for residents of the Cayman Islands to look into their hearts and the wallets and donate to the many local charities that need support, especially in this difficult year.

Today, we have a request of the charities.

Because of the tough economic times, residents are not giving in the same amounts, or to as many charities, as they have in the past. As a result, charities and other non-profit organisations are thinking out of the box and changing their fundraising tactics.

Unfortunately, these tactics are sometimes more aggressive than what has been the norm here in Cayman and it’s upsetting some people.

Instead of sitting by the side of the supermarket doors and politely asking shoppers to support a particular cause, people from some organisations are almost blocking the doors to solicit funds.

In George Town this past Saturday, one man was soliciting donations in the middle of Cardinall Avenue when drivers were at the stop sign.

There was also a fundraising car wash on Walkers Road last Saturday morning that had teenage girls standing in the crosswalk on the road with signs to try and get motorists to stop.

On top of this, there are unsupervised children inside and outside of grocery stores asking for people to sponsor them for some event or trip.

The sheer volume of organisations that have representatives out on the streets engaged in fundraising activities is daunting. This is especially true on Saturday and some people are choosing to shop on different days rather than running the gauntlet of people asking for donations.

Don’t get us wrong: The charities of Grand Cayman do vital work in the community and fill in many gaps for which government can’t provide.

We understand this has been a tough year and fundraising figures are down. However, we urge charities and other non-profit organisations to remain polite in the way they ask for donations, or else there could be an unexpected backlash from the donors.