Thursday, March 06, 2008

Money, money, money

Some of you may have the theme song used on "The Apprentice" in your head; others may have Abba going through theirs. Either way, the theme for this article is moolah, dough, dollars, bucks, the bottom line. Now that I've been working in the non-profit world it has become that much more apparent to me how much money impacts lives. I get disgusted when I think how much we have to have money and the fact that those people who have a lot of it get more power because of it. I LOVE working at Habitat for Humanity Kansas City and they like having me. They want to hire me, but question whether they can because of what?? MONEY. AmeriCorps is funding my current position (through the federal government) and I'm eligible to work a second term thru them, but our positions for next year haven't been approved yet - why?? MONEY. (The new federal budget has majorly cut funding to the CNCS which is over AmeriCorps - which means the entire Habitat for Humanity AmeriCorps program is in jeopardy affecting Habitat chpaters all over the US - to read more about it & take action go here.) We have several potential partners who want to work with our office to build houses but in the tightening economy companies aren't sure they can donate that kind of cash while they're cutting jobs. Others will only come on board if they know that some other group is going to commit. Meanwhile we have families lined up and ready for their homes to be built and wehave to tell them we're not sure it will happen this year because of MONEY.

I've never been a big fan of money - I understand that it's necessary to get those things that we need to live, but I hate the way it often motiviates people to do things that are, in my mind, unethical or in humane. It drives me crazy that people who have a lot of money get to decide which organizations are worth funding while others disappear despite the work they were attempting to do. All I want is to have a job that gives me enough money to buy food, live in a house that's not too big, have a car that works well, pay my utilities and occasionally got out to eat or do something fun. I don't care about having a big vacation to Europe (although it would be nice) - I can take some days off and go camping. I just hate that in order for my organization to function, or for me to have a job in a few months, I'm need to kiss up to people who have the money and therefore decide whether it should happen or not.

1 comment:

Big Unit said...

I work for a non-profit as well. Our board is composed of a lot of people w/ buildings and streets named after them here in OKC. Others are big corp folks. Several drive cars worth almost as much as my house. Many have second homes and vacation houses around the country.

They want to do stupid projects, that mostly have no real need but they can put a plaque w/ their name on it but not on a new phone system. They don't see value in staff.

During the ice storm when most of us were w/out power for a week but still coming to work, working outside in the cold cutting up 10 acres of downed trees they would come by offer no help or hot chocolate but tell us how their power was out but they were staying at one of the three fanciest hotels in town and it was just a big party.