If there is one aspect about shopping in shopping centres that annoys me on a regular basis, it is being stopped by people canvassing for charities who don’t actually know or even care about the charity they’re working for, aka chuggers (portmanteau of ‘charity’ and ‘mugger’)
The other day I was stopped by a chugger on behalf of the NDCS, a charity my family have always supported, and from the impression I got, he had no clue whatsoever about the NCDS and what it means for a lot of families with d/Deaf children.
Now, in terms of charities like the NDCS who are vital in spreading awareness about deafness and providing support, what does chugging actually achieve?
Is it helpful?
Or, does it do more harm than good?
Personally, I think it is actually starting to undo all the work we make on improving d/Deaf awareness and support. The man who stopped me didn’t push further when others ignored or said no to him, but he never promoted anything about the NDCS and what they do. Now to me, this is wrong and extremely counterproductive because how can you promote and raise money for a charity if you don’t even try to talk about it?
Answer, you can’t.
Therefore, the NDCS chugger was perfectly useless.
I was annoyed by him, but more importantly I found his attitude and dismissiveness towards the NDCS and deafness offensive. He was precisely the wrong person for the NDCS to employ. It begs the question, when did canvassing for money clearly become more important than spreading awareness? Charities do need money, but it should not be at the expense of ignoring and offending people who rely on them for support.
The NDCS do more than just send out regular booklets and give advice to families with Deaf children. They are a lifeline, providing activities, PGL weekends etc to give them a community and a chance to meet others who understand their situation.
It is an important charity in the UK and compared to others – like with everything Deaf related in society – it is underrepresented.
Chuggers simply make this situation worse.
If there is anyone who should be canvassing and campaigning for the NDCS, it is people and families (Deaf and Hearing) who truly care about raising and promoting awareness, as well as building on the NDCS’s original values.
Have you ever been stopped by an NDCS chugger or anyone asking for money on behalf of a charity for the d/Deaf?