Putting the money where your mouth is

Happy end-of-January! We all like to be reminded of the flighty transience of time, do we not? (Answer: we really don’t.) In order to avoid that particular reality, I like to focus on the tiny, perhaps inconsequential aspects of daily life, if only for a moment. So…

…do you know who Barnardo’s are? If not, the simple explanation is that Barnardo’s is a children’s charity. I have once even stood on a high street to collect money for them. Yup.

The image below is their latest campaign (suitably timed for the UK general election – which is in fewer than 100 days now, I believe), of which I made a blurry caption on a bus.

All for one and one for all?

The gist is that the current government awards more from the pot of social welfare to a mum who earns £70k a year than a mum who earns £9k a year, given that the other circumstances in the lives of these respective mothers are equal, i.e. same number of children (of the same age), same civil status, same hours worked, etc. Barnardo’s thinks that this is unfair, and wants you to text their number if you also think it is unfair. However, Barnardo’s have not stated on this billboard why they think is unfair, or how they believe that the welfare money should be spent.

Now, as far as I’m concerned, it would be great if everybody pulled their load, and received the proportionally same benefits (not necessarily all in cash) from the state, although I do not think I will see that happen in my lifetime. That said, I am uncertain that this us-versus-them, or rather we and the “other” – because depending on how you identify yourself, there will always be somebody who is different and therefore “other” to you – method is the way to make people donate to your charity. By alienating one portion of the public you are implying that they are doing something wrong, which is not necessarily the case. Frankly, everybody seems to be having a tough time right now.

But! Do you know what a really, truly tough time of life is? The time you have to wait between removing a cake from the oven, and eating it.


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