It seems that no matter where you go there are always people asking for money for either a charity, cause or themselves. If I donated to every person that contacted me in one form or another I myself would need to ask for money!! Recently I’ve found these groups on Facebook that are called Buy Nothing groups. They are specific to your certain city and usually try to verify you actually reside in them before you are allowed to join.
They run on the guise of being transparent (no private messaging a person for their stuff, all transactions are done on the public page), no mention of money ever, only joining one of these groups and pretty much being honest. But with anything there seems to be a few kinks. People try to be sneaky and join multiple groups, contact the individual with their sob story of why they should get the item, or sell the free items later on Craigslist (or garage sale etc…) which has been noted as a no-no. I myself used one of these pages when I was packing up all the stuff from my house that is now for sale. I would post “free garage sale” with the intent of saving myself many trips to the donation site. It worked wonderfully, I got rid of what I needed to and people were able to get some pretty cool stuff.
But what I’ve come to notice with this type of group and with individuals that ask for charity, there are always the bad apples. Now I get the whole try to get it for free before paying for it, I really do, but sometimes it just seems like people take advantage of it. Just this morning I was perusing the Buy Nothing site I belong and there was a woman that said she wanted to go on a shopping spree to Costco and did anyone have any gift cards they wanted to “gift” her so she could do so. Stunned, I was stunned. Part of me wanted to ask this woman “what in the hell, are you kidding me?”. Of course I had to joke to the hubs that I was going to post one as well “I want to live in a 5 bedroom house with a pool, chef kitchen, hardwoods, etc… and not pay for it”.
Without a doubt, I think we as humans need to help each other out when we can, but some people just don’t have any limits to this which then makes people untrusting of anyone asking. People that are truly in need get passed by because we are so suspicious and don’t want to get taken. The people that stand on the freeway exits, I read their signs and just drive on by. The grown men that approach me in the city, they either don’t get an answer or they get a snarky comment. Yes, I’ve become one of those. That doesn’t mean I don’t help people when I can, it’s just I’m definitely more selective.
Now I need to go check the Buy Nothing site for that free house…oh and a flying monkey. Wish me luck!!