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Herald-Mail Forums

December 15, 2008

Last week's question:



The owner of a Smithsburg-area liquor store recently said the store sold a winning Mega Millions ticket worth $250,000. If you won, what would you do with your winnings?

o Pay off my bills and my mortgage. - 77 votes (57 percent)

o Help family members, including my children, who are having financial difficulties. - 37 votes (27 percent)

o Contribute to my church or my favorite charity. - 11 votes (8 percent)

o Assist with a local nonprofit, such as Holly Place, which is having problems making ends meet. 4 votes - (3 percent)

o Spend the cash on me. I bought the ticket, so why should I share my winnings?7 votes (5 percent)

Comments

Posted by notlaffen on Dec 8

Depends on the amount I won. It is considerably easier for a Bill Gates or a Warren Buffet to give away billions to charities - they still have billions left, which is more than they can reasonably spend.

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The real miracle is that people of extremely modest means contribute such a high percentage of their income to charities. It is difficult to evaluate charities - just look at the county commissioners and the gaming commission and try to make any sense out of the grants of our money that they give out to their favorite charities - it can't be done.

Information is the key to correct charitable giving, but that information is sometimes hard to get. The truly poor among us almost always try to avoid asking for help - see the elderly living on fixed incomes trying to pay for the necessities of life.

See Meals On Wheels claiming the cost of the contents and the packaging of each meal cost $11. Is each meal at least twice as expensive as the rest of us normally eat?

Why would anyone support Meals On Wheels if they knew how much each meal costs? And then there is the food bank that claims to give out fresh meat and whole milk.

Billions of hungry people in this world survive without fresh meat and whole milk - do you think that this organization properly meets its objectives in a cost effective manner? Again, good information is essential but it is very hard to get.

Posted by blessedbe on Dec. 9

I didn't see an option for "a little bit of everything." $250,000 doesn't go very far anymore. I'd pay my own bills, sock some away for savings. Give some to my family and friends that need help and give some to charity. After all, you can't take it with you.

Posted by hannahsue, Dec. 12

I would like to take this opportunity to clarify several misunderstandings expressed by notlaffen. Comments were made regarding the local Meals on Wheels program, sponsored by the Washington County Commission on Aging, and the cost of meals that are delivered to medically homebound clients. It is true that when ancillary costs such as gasoline, packaging, vehicle maintenance, etc., are added to the actual cost of food comprising a meal, the value does approximate $11.

However, when this number is taken out of context, it is very misleading. This $11 per meal figure is used only for planning and budgeting purposes and is never charged to nor requested from participants. Clients are asked to try to make a donation toward the actual cost of the meal, which is $5.25. Most individuals are extremely appreciative of the service and very generous, within personal financial restraints, with their contributions and the funds go a long way to offset actual meal costs. However, in a situation where a client can afford only a very small or possibly no contribution, the Commission on Aging is nonjudgmental and continues to provide meal delivery as well as any other type of services the client may need.

Meals are never denied due to an individual's inability to contribute.

Why don't we focus on the very generous donation of time and energy given by many, many volunteers, who so faithfully contribute their services to individuals in our county receiving home-delivered meals?

These are the folks who report broken porch steps and see to their repair, refer clients with medical conditions that need attention and cover the cost of emergency- monitoring systems for folks on their delivery route who can't afford to pay for one.

Hopefully, there will never be a time when we run short of this type of caring individual.

Posted by hannahsue, Dec. 12

I would like to take this opportunity to clarify several misunderstandings expressed by notlaffen. Comments were made regarding the local Meals on Wheels program, sponsored by the Washington County Commission on Aging, and the cost of meals that are delivered to medically homebound clients. It is true that when ancillary costs such as gasoline, packaging, vehicle maintenance, etc., are added to the actual cost of food comprising a meal, the value does approximate $11.

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