It’s ridiculous of course. I spent £2.50 on knitting needles, £1.20 on wool, and £1.50 on stuffing, and I used all of that to knit a teddy bear that’ll be sold for a pound. Ok, it’s a small teddy-bear, and in fact I’ll probably get four or maybe half a dozen out of the wool. And ok, I’ll use the needles again, and there’ll be stuffing left over. But it’d be much simpler to give them a tenner and let them get on with it.
So why do we do this? Why do we encourage people to put effort, and in my case money, in to fiddly and irrelevant Good Works in order to raise money, when it would be simpler and more profitable just to hand over some cash.
I guess if I was a knitter I’d have had needles and scraps of wool and maybe even stuffing for toys already to hand, so I wouldn’t have been spending the money out. But that’s not really the point, is it?
It’s about inclusion, I guess. It’s about empowerment. It’s about enabling contribution.
Isn’t it also about letting ourselves off the hook, though?