It was a cold fall night (well, not really, because it’s Albuquerque, but it adds to the drama)…three old guys – Lowell, Jack and Jim – were busy complaining again. Picture the curmudgeons from the Muppets.
(Does anybody under 40 understand that example?)
They covered the usual topics …the Chicago Bears nosedive, the expansion of their waistlines, and the thinning of their hair. Ho hum. Then, Lowell interjected a new topic that provoked Jim’s ire; he said, “Hey, how often do you get hit-up at the checkout counter for a donation to a random charity?” Old man Jim’s response? “Arghh too often!” Jack just muttered.
They compared notes and found that they had given to a lot of charities that they knew nothing about. Why? Because Lowell had an occasionally fickle 2 year-old in his cart and just wanted to get out of dodge. Jim? Because he believes in karma and thinks that he’ll get run over leaving the grocery store if he says no. Jack, well he was asleep at the table, so we never really found out why.
Hmmm… www.internetsearch.com later they uncovered some dirty secrets about checkout counter donations.
- The donors don’t keep the tax benefit (often it’s claimed by the merchant) and the charities don’t get any information about the donors.
- The charities often don’t get cash – instead some form of store credit that often disallows sales prices.
- Donors have to make snap decisions under pressure without the ability to do any homework on the charity. What in tarnation?? Now to be clear, these gentlemen are philanthropic fellas- they just didn’t like the guilt giving and pressure approach. There must be a better way?
Lowell, Jim, Marilyn, and Jack decided to turn this process on its head. Let’s give the donor the option to decide where his/her change goes from the purchases they make. Wow, how American! And how about letting them keep the tax benefit and – wait for it – we’ll give the nonprofits real US of A currency. Bam! Now we’re talking.
Don’t get us wrong. There’s much more to CaringCent – fun, recognition, new-fangled social media. But, our goal is to give you, the generous and caring American donor, the opportunity to stop the forces of checkout counter coercion by donating your checkout change to the nonprofits you care most about, in a manner that is fun, secure, and rewarding.