Wednesday, December 13, 2006

When You Win, But You Don't

When you are out networking, the old 50/50 raffle tickets are sometimes sold. They add to the excitement of the event and also help groups to raise funds in an easy, not too intrusive way. Being the winner can get you into trouble if you're not a savvy player.

In the area I live, (NW Ohio) it is accepted practice that if you are attending an event that has a charitable connection, it is good form to celebrate the win, and then to magnanimously give the monies back to the charity. Conversely, if 50/50 raffle tickets are sold at an event that is strictly business, it is considered just fine for the winner to keep the money. Of course, no one ever refuses money donated back to a group that has organized the event.

I remember when I first became aware of the above rule -- or actually I was puzzled. During my daughter's high school years she attended a private school. My two other children attended public schools so I had no other history with the private world. We had some sort of dress up event where raffle tickets were sold for a car. (After all, this was Detroit!) I was so puzzled when the parent who won, gave the car back to be used for another fund raising effort. My brain would just not compute the logic. But knowing what I know now, this man was abiding by this unwritten rule. He had to give back his winnings for charity.

Have you encountered this rule or did your parents tell you about it as you were growing up?

1 comment:

Linda Fayerweather, Editor said...

Hi Debby,
I'm off in RI waiting for the birth of grandbaby number one - the momma is sleeping - but not contracting.
I was catching up on my reading and I too had not heard of this NW Ohio tradition of giving the raffle prize back when I moved here. Actually, what it has done for me is two things.
1. If it is a charity auction that I want to support, I will buy a ticket and give it to someone else who needs the prize but is unaware of this strange system.
2. Not buy a ticket and maybe give a donation.

You see, whether it is a charity or not, what intriges me is the chance of winning something I'd like to have. If I'm only going to have to "give it back" why bother playing the game.

So - Charities - you want my donation - don't promise me something I have to give back. If I believe in your charity, I give a donation without a bribe.