Why are people so reluctant to donate?

You see people in the streets, walking past charities, ignoring them. They walk past the salvation army, ignoring the guy ringing his bell. They walk past the habitat for humanity booth, ignoring the lady asking for donations. Why is it so hard to get people to donate?

Is it because most people don’t trust charities? Or they think that most of their donations will be used by the charity as admin and logistic costs, leaving very little for the actual charity itself? Perhaps it’s a trust issue and they’re afraid of accidentally giving money away to some con man posing as a charity?

Or it could be that most people are actually short on money, they’re living paycheck to paycheck and can’t even make ends meet. That’s a possibility too. Maybe most people are fundamentally selfish, some philosophers sometime to believe that. Why would anyone want to give away their hard earned cash?

Have you ever tried convincing someone to donate? Do you know how difficult that task is? Trying to get their attention is hard enough, but to actually convince them to part with their money? Good luck.

They always try to ignore you, avoid you, and in the rare moment that you managed to talk to them, they will come up with all kinds of excuses not to donate brush you off their backs.

Ultimately, I believe the reason is that humans are too clever and too creative for their own good. They seem to be capable of coming up with millions of reasons why they don’t, or won’t donate to charity.

What’s the solution then? How do we get more people to donate and contribute to the greater good? As an individual, I don’t know. But I’m sure a lot of charities are looking into it, there are even organizations like 80,000 hours that teaches people how to choose a satisfying career AND help solve world problems.

So what can I do to help? How do I get more people to donate for a cause? It’s hard to change people’s mind, logic and reasons don’t work very well. How do I make them willingly want to change?

The only thing I can think of is to write about it and hope my readers would willingly change and donate more, especially those with the capacity to. Do you know how rich you are? Give what you can and take a pledge, most of you are wealthy enough to.

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