Charity Season Kicks Off With New Alliances

And new ways to give
BY: DON KEY

The fund raising season was kicked off last week with a gala social event/press conference, at the spiffy new H+ hospital.

All of the local non-profits are once again hitting the streets and beating the bushes for money.  There are dozens and dozens of worthy causes asking for your support, either with money or hands on volunteering.

But last week Hospital H+ and the International Community Foundation, (ICF), announced they have gone into cahoots to gather more money for their worthy causes.

ICF is a San Diego based non-profit foundation that channels bundles of money, mostly from large foundations like Hewlett Packard, to large and small local charities of their choosing that they have vetted. They take their vetting seriously, demanding frequent accounting and efficacy reports from those they channel money to, too see that donations are responsibly used. ICF’s main area of interest is north west Mexico, and they

This fast track giving has its cost, however, as ICF rakes off 10% of the donation before it passes on the rest. But, another important reason to use ICF is they can give American citizens a ligitmate tax write off on their U.S. taxes. Aquiring this status is difficult and costly enough that many of our local charites have not jumped through those hoops.

The GIVE + Campaign that was being pitched at the hospital last week is looking for donors interested in helping the local poor people who have major health issues the local social security hospital cannot handle.

The hospital opened this year, with 16 rooms, four intensive care rooms, and an impressive array of lab and diagnostic services. Oh! And Los Cabo’s first viable blood bank. All of this is aimed at the foreign community, of course, and any Mexican who can afford it. So far we have not heard of any instances of price gauging of foreigners at H as is common at the other local hospitals.

But the hospital is showing a charitable side. They first opened up extra beds they have to a hap hazard array of needy locals, but now they are getting more sophisticated about it, and getting some reimbursement to boot.

A decade or more ago the then very successful San Jose charity LCCF planned to build a pediatric heart clinic on donated land on the corridor. In those days the Los Cabos Children’s Foundation, (LCCF), was still being guided by founder Tom Walsh and was a going Jesse. Lots of donations, good leadership, and many great successful programs for needy children. Since then Walsh has stepped down, fully expecting his team to carry his vision further. Unfortunately, the wealthy donators took over the board and their agenda is now filled with squabbling over petty issues and micro managing of the paid professionals who are hired to run it.

But, we digress. The LCCF needed the cooperation of state officials to build this hospital and they would not sign off on it unless the facility was in La Paz, the capitol city. Of course none of the money was raised there, but better to spend the Los Cabos peoples’ money in a state hospital so the politicians can take credit for it. Way better than their constituents know it was foreign money that built this life saving facility.

So this party last week was announcing that LCCF is raising money in cahoots with Hospital +, and channeling it through ICF.

Hospital H+ has donation boxes strategically placed around the hospital, as well as what they are calling the Koral Center, a retail barn of a building in front of the hospital, perched on the edge of the fourlane.

Other ways to give include firing off a check to San Diego HQ, or giving them your loosing stocks or mutual funds. And you don’t have to have a large estate to remember IFC in your will. Go their website, www.icfdn.org.

Or you can donate direct, with no 10% spiff going  to ICF. Give  to the Los Cabos Children’s Foundation at www.loscaboschildren.org, or to give to a very worthy family based charity that puts a big effort into vetting those who they help by making sure there’s no, say slouchy able bodied man in the family, give to the MAC ladies at www.ligamac.org.

This is not to say there are not other well managed and worthy charities that focus their efforts in other fields. Just do your own due diligence.