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Monday, February 27, 2006

Charity for Children

Funny (and maybe a bit scary) little piece in NY Magazine about the newest trend for Manhattan socialites. Apparently, there are now charity events for toddlers.
What does a benefit for kiddie socialites look like? Catering includes iced sugar cookies, star-shaped cheese sandwiches, and individual pizzas decorated to look like smiley lion faces; entertainment includes a puppet show. But the kickoff event for the New York Public Library’s Library Cubs wasn’t really for the children. It was for the 40 or so alpha families who eschewed nanny care to bring their kids to the walnut-paneled Trustees Room (with its seventeenth-century Flemish tapestries) to, you know, show their support.
...“I love the idea of kids connecting and introducing them to the idea of social responsibility,” says Molly Jong-Fast, who came with her husband, Matthew Greenfield, and their 2-year-old son, Max, who was sucking on an animal cracker during the puppet show. The soignée moms, dressed in cashmere sweaters and Joe’s jeans and carrying fancy handbags, traded stories about the birthday-party circuit and the preschool-admission process (this year’s hot pick: Park Avenue Christian Church Day School). Eventually, the kids tired of the bookmark-making station and began a pillow fight.

Why do I find this scary? Because imagine if Jewish fundraisers get these types of ideas into their heads. As it is, there are so many fund-raising events scheduled in my neighborhood that it is not humanly possible for myself and my husband to attend them all. The school-aged set opens up a whole new vista of potential invitees. I can just see it now. My already overflowing mailbox will be stuffed with colorful printed invitations for pizza and french fry dinners on Saturday evenings, pancake and waffle breakfasts on Sunday mornings, ice cream sundae parlor meetings on school nights in the family rooms of their well-heeled school-age buddies - all for the younger set. These events will be honoring some of my kids' nearest and dearest friends and classmates. Honorees will include "toddler of the year", "best behaved playdate", and "clean-up award". Awardees will be presented with sterling silver gameboys and barbie dolls. If you lived in my neighborhood, you might not think this possibilty was so farfetched. I'm shuddering just thinking about it.

10 Comments:

Blogger SephardiLady said...

I am totally unsure how all of the goodies are supposed to teach kids about charity and kindness. What ever happened to just good old fashioned charity and good old fashioned kindness?

5:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lol. That is a scary thought, OM.

6:38 PM  
Blogger respondingtojblogs said...

The school-aged set opens up a whole new vista of potential invitees. I can just see it now. My already overflowing mailbox will be stuffed with colorful printed invitations for pizza and french fry dinners on Saturday evenings, pancake and waffle breakfasts on Sunday mornings, ice cream sundae parlor meetings on school nights in the family rooms of their well-heeled school-age buddies - all for the younger set.

I get the humor of the post, but not the substance of your argument. True, "adult" charity soirees are often lavish and self-serving and, by extension, so will these toddler charities. But the fact remains that these charities attract people with more wealth than a non-ornate charity would and therefore the people who most benefit are the folks at the receving end.

Fortunately, I am out of all the concerned demographics (Rich, Jewish*, and Toddler), but I think the price of an overflowing mailbox is a small one to pay.

*Lest you pull a DovBear on me, let me reaffirm that I AM Jewish. I don't live in a Jewish community and I don't receive schnorrer letters.

8:46 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

but not the substance of your argument.

Um.. there really isn't an argument here. Just thought the whole kiddie charity circuit was kinda amusing, and had a vision of it hitting the Five Towns, is all.

Lest you pull a DovBear on me,

Have you EVER seen me "pull a DovBear"? And trust me, I don't intend to.

9:05 PM  
Blogger respondingtojblogs said...

Have you EVER seen me "pull a DovBear"? And trust me, I don't intend to.

Heaven forbid, I just thought a disclaimer was in order while previewing my comment.

Honestly, glitzy events turn my stomach, and nothing is worse than a Hungarian* Jewish glitzy event. I just happen to be a big fan of private charities.

*Disclaimer: I am a honky. And yes, that's OUR word.

9:11 PM  
Blogger queeniesmom said...

Brought to you just in time for Purim! Don't worry about your theme, decorations,etc. Now you to can host/have a kiddie tziddukkah event - scary thought knowing the 5T mentality.

Hopefully, this nightmare never becomes a reality.

1:01 AM  
Blogger Ezzie said...

Heh.

1:32 PM  
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Anonymous Viagra online without prescription said...

Interesting article, I think that this can be taught to kids for sure, we need to teach them about, love, about helping others.

4:41 PM  

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