When we go about our daily lives and come across representatives of various charitable organisations, we tend to demonise some of them as a result of some rather negative developments around scandals in which donated monies hardly reach the originally intended recipients, if they ever reach them at all. Having to endure even a short two-minute presentation from someone whom you essentially just see as “wanting some more money from you and many others” often has us losing the essence of charity, sometimes rightfully so because of all the scams doing the rounds. There are even some times when you do donate whatever little small change you claim is all you can manage, just so that you don’t have to endure another second of being solicited, possibly conned or emotionally blackmailed in the process.
Personally, I’d have never thought a visit to a shoe retailer could be as educational as it has turned out to be, but my eyes have really been opened up just a bit more and I’m very grateful for that because it has put to bed some long-running concerns I’ve justifiably had around charities and the donations they frequently canvass. Going about my daily business of shopping for a cute pair of shoes to match an evening dress I couldn’t resist taking home from a boutique store, I found myself wondering whether or not I’d walked into the wrong store. The Brantanos I usually frequent for my shoe-shopping fix was indeed still a Brantanos, but it was all greened out.
I found the perfect pair of shoes, as I always do, but while fitting them with the usual help you get from the staff members I couldn’t help but ask exactly what all the green was about. Sure, I can read so I did indeed see that there was a partnership going on between Brantanos and their chosen charity, Macmillan Cancer Support, but it was interesting to find out more about how exactly a link between a shoe retailer and a charity works to actually help the people targeted by the charity.
These are the types of charitable events I think are worth the support, quite simply because they go right to the source of the problem they’re trying to address. As it turned out (and to my delight, warranting my full support), it’s not merely a matter of raising money “for cancer” or for “charity,” as many charity organisations would have us believe. While Brantano’s Go Green initiative, which has been running since May 30th aims to raise awareness for Macmillan Cancer Support, the £40,000 they aim to raise further will go towards helping fulfil an explicitly defined purpose, which is to offer support to people fighting cancer. The support comes in a lot of different forms, one of which is just knowing that you can pick up the phone or send an email to have a chat to someone who understands exactly what you’re going through, as a cancer patient.
If more charitable events and initiatives were this upfront and transparent about exactly what they plan to do with the money we donate, they’d definitely have more support from me, and I assume from many other eager souls out there as well.
You can visit www.brantano.co.uk to learn more about Brantano and to get an extensive look at one of my secret shoe-shopping holes (well I guess it’s no longer a secret then), otherwise if you want to find out more about Macmillan Cancer Support and all the other initiatives and events they have planned, visit www.macmillan.org.uk.