Giving back: Covid-19 puts the squeeze on charities, but ExpenseOnDemand keeps on giving

“It’s the people who were in trouble before all this started that I feel sorry for,” said Ron, unscrewing the lid of his Thermos flask and pouring coffee into the stainless-steel cup. “They were in enough trouble already, before the funds given to the charities helping them dried up. Then they were in even more trouble.”

His son Ollie was sitting at the opposite end of their shared but socially-distanced park bench with his own Thermos and a piece of cake in daughter Alice’s school lunchbox. “I feel like a proper Charlie, eating cake from a pink unicorn sandwich box,” he said glumly.

“Get over yourself, son. If that’s all you have to worry about, you’re doing well enough. The world has more to worry about than you being self-conscious about a lunchbox. Even a pink one. Charity funding has dried up, and that’s created a whole load more victims of the pandemic, right around the world. And they haven’t even got the disease!”

Ollie nodded, and popped a morsel of cake into his mouth. “In which case you’ll be pleased to know that at work we’re still using ExpenseOnDemand, and their giving back initiative is still going strong. A proportion of the profit goes into nominated charities every month, making it possible for vital work to go on.”

Ron nodded. “Yes, and I suppose the charities they’re helping are working with people who are the worst off in the world.”

“They are, Dad.  Children with no parents and no homes; blind girls not getting any kind of education; victims of the sex trade… I suppose we don’t know how lucky we are. ExpenseOnDemand keeps helping, month in, month out. And they haven’t stopped giving.”

There was a companionable silence between them for a few moments. Ron broke it. “You know, there’s too much suffering in the world. Even at a very low level. Your mum and I haven’t seen The ‘Littles’ except through the window for ages. We’re missing them at lot.”

“I know what you mean Dad,” said Ollie. (The ‘Littles’ was the family’s collective term for Ron’s grandchildren Alice and Jack). “We’ll get through it, and the world will get onto an even keel again.”

“Oh, I know, son. That’s just one of the small problems that will take care of themselves in the end, hard though it is at the moment. What we really need to be concerned about is the people helped by charities that will fold before this is all over. What about them? Where will they go?

“That’s why it’s so important that we keep on supporting them where we can. We should follow the ExpenseOnDemand lead and put money into struggling charities. Being selfish isn’t the way forward. And speaking of being selfish, have you eaten all that cake?”

Ollie was chasing escaped crumbs around the lunchbox with his finger. He froze, and then looked guiltily at his father. “It was only a small piece of cake…”

“And that’s the whole point,” said the older man. “It wasn’t much, but you didn’t share. I was looking forward to that. But I suppose that’s the same pinch being felt by lots of charities. They’re not getting even a small share of what little there is to go around. If everyone kept on putting just a few pounds into charity’s pockets, the world would be a better place, pandemic or no pandemic. That’s a lesson for us all.”

Picture: Milkos | Dreamstime