The importance of a thank you

Posted on January 31, 2018


thank you

Like many of you, I was scrambling at the end of the year to get my finances in order before the new tax law changes. Part of this was donating to charities.

One of the charities is my church. On December 28, I personally dropped off a rather substantial donation check to the rectory. I also included a personal note to the pastor, explaining that this donation was in honor of my mother, who was a long time parishioner. The check was cashed on December 29. It is now a month later and I haven’t heard anything back from the church, no acknowledgement of my donation, nothing. So I call and speak with the very nice and helpful parish secretary. She quickly explained that they have a form letter they can send out to those donors who request it. She emailed it to me that very afternoon. Now I am no philanthropy expert, but it seems to me that the onus should not be on the donor to follow up for an acknowledgment of donations. I find this especially ironic since several times a year, the pastor gives a weekly sermon on the importance of supporting the church. I don’t disagree with that, but it is a two way street.

I contrast that with another charity I support, New Life Furnishings. This organization helps formerly homeless people furnish their homes. It is kind of like a mini-Goodwill. I mailed my check on December 28th. This check was not nearly as large as the one I gave to the church. On December 29th, I get a very nice email thank you from the head of the charity. Included in the email was a short video, showing testimonials from a client. I have been impressed with this organization from the start. I gave most of my mother’s furniture and housewares to them. When they came to collect things, they were just so nice and friendly. The volunteers obviously loved what they do and it showed. It was like having a little party. It made emptying my mother’s house a bit easier.

You can guess which organization I will be supporting in the future.

What experiences have you had with thank yous or lack thereof?