Friday, 24 September 2010

Charity begins at home

You may be familiar with the ONE foundation, which features endless whining from Bono - it looks like a vanity project populated by rock stars and rich capitalists after some decent PR. Like many celebrity outfits (and sports charities), it doesn't actually do anything charitable, it lobbies for clean water, being nice to everyone and similar unobjectionable things.

One thing it's very good at is ending poverty. More specifically, it's put an end to poverty in the New York executive and marketing communities.

Bono's ONE campaign had blitzed the New York media with fancy gift boxes. These contained several items, from designer water bottles to $15 bags of Starbucks coffee, as well as information explaining that poverty-stricken African children live on less than $1.25 a day – "about the cost of the cookie in this box".
in 2008, the most recent year for which tax records are available, ONE took $14,993,873 in donations from philanthropists, of which a thrifty $184,732 was distributed to charity. More than $8m was spent on executive and employee salaries.

An admirable achievement, I'm sure you'll agree.

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