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In the Name of God بسم الله

Cost-Effective Charity

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  • Veteran Member
 you might think it worthwhile to contribute for the provision of guide dogs for the blind, which certainly improve the quality of life for blind people. But it costs $50,000 to train one such dog which will work for nine years, and for that amount of money it is possible to pay for surgery that will save 500 people in the developing world from blindness caused by trachoma.

 

 

http://www.the-tls.co.uk/tls/public/article1634311.ece

 

As a theory of ethics Utilitarianism is very flawed, so yes, it's good to give money to guide dog charities, but the article makes a good point that we need to pay more attention to the impact our charity will have and try and give charitably in an effective way.

Edited by .InshAllah.
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I can think of three counter arguments. Firstly, from the standpoint of religion, it is the act of benefiting others through one's resources that bears fruit in one's afterlife. The relative degree of charitable impact holds little importance in this respect. Second, it is not the role of the individual necessarily to identify specific charity organisations that have a truly meaningful impact; that is, by and large, the role of government. Third, it doesn't make sense to look further into that which I have no awareness of or knowledge about, neither do I have an incentive to do so.

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Firstly, from the standpoint of religion, it is the act of benefiting others through one's resources that bears fruit in one's afterlife. 

If you want to benefit others maximally then you will look into how to spend your money in an effective way.  

Suppose there are 2 charities that you consider donating to.  One spends 90% of the donation on admin costs.  The other spends 10% on admin costs.  If all else is equal, the best thing to do is donate to the second.  

 

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