Kids want to know problems with NGOs
“Have you ever had a student who gave money to an NGO that was corrupt and “disappeared”? Several students asked similar questions. Anne, I wonder if you’d share what you know about this.
Marvin shared that he Googled his NGO + scandal, and had dug up some dirt on one of the founders. But also said that since then, the organization had made recovered.
I suspect that the main way that donated money goes astray is when people who collect it forget to actually mail it in. Thinking of that cues me to require that students show a receipt from the NGO as part of their evidence on their poster that they did make a difference. that was a bit patchy last year.
Another student said “Isn’t it kind of mean to even ask that?” And you know, I had not thought of it like that, but the skeptical attitude that is emeshed in the scientific method CAN be perceived as mean
Anne, you also brought up that many NGOs do not post the science behind their actions. For example, what is the data about the problem – is there a problem? How big is it? What’s the trend? What will the measure or count to see if their actions are making things better or worse? Plus the concepts behind the problem and action. Sort of like the powerpoint students were asked to do only maybe in a little more depth.
I’m suggesting that students make the science suggestion to the NGO they support in a tactful way. Maybe as suggestions embedded in with praise – “Really appreciate what your organization is doing for ___. We are interested to know more about the science behind___ . We wondered if you might put up a page on your website to explain.” or something similar.
Oh, I am so tactful. Just ask my family… 🙂