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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I Am Scrooge: Unicef Halloween Bag

Please don't hate me. But I just hate stuff like this.FEED Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF Bag at HSN supports UNICEF Nutrition Programs

FEED Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF BagTrick-or-Treat for UNICEF supporters can collect in style this Halloween with the first ever FEED Trick-or-Treat bag to benefit UNICEF. This special edition bag was created by FEED Projects, a charitable company with the mission of creating good products that FEED the world, in honor of the 60th anniversary of Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF. This fun burlap carrier is available exclusively at HSN—a leading multichannel retailer reaching more than 95 million US homes—and this Halloween.

Malnutrition is the underlying cause in up to half of preventable deaths of children under five. Yet, there is hope. For each $13.20 FEED Trick-or-Treat bag purchased at HSN or at, HSN will donate $3.50 to the U.S. Fund for UNICEFto support UNICEF's nutrition programs for children. Each bag purchased will enable UNICEF to provide one child in the developing world with an entire year's worth of micronutrient powders. These powders are easily sprinkled over food, instantly fortifying a child’s meal with essential nutrients to help give him or her the best start in life.

FEED and HSN are Proud Supporters for the 2010 Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF campaign. For more information, visit and

Click here to see a recent video of Lauren Bush of FEED Projects at HSN, speaking about the FEED Trick-or-Treat bag to benefit UNICEF.

I got a notice from Garnet Hill, the upscale catalog company. In my kids' younger days, I wouldn't buy the gift wrap, candy bars, and so forth. I just gave a donation to the school. Honestly, shouldn't we give $14.00 to Unicef and let our children carry grocery bags--or pillowcases, as I did--for Halloween?

What do you think about such charitable endeavors/consumerism? Neat or not?


FB @ said...

A definite NOT.

I used pillowcases as a kid too.

Jenna said...

What happened to the little boxes you constructed in school for UNICEF, weren't those free?

Jenna said...

Also, is there a way to contact you? Do you have an email address?

Anonymous said...

Every year it drives me nuts that our student public service organization collects literally pounds of soda can tabs and pays to ship them to ronald mcdonald house.

I ran the numbers-- they're paying about the same in shipping as Ronald McDonald house is getting from the scrap metal.

I read on snopes that it started as an urban legend, but Ronald McDonald now accepts them as a way of getting viability and publicity, even though they don't really make any money off it.

I am the working poor. said...

I'm glad to see another person skipped buying the junk in the fundraising booklets and donated money instead.

see you there! said...

Just donate the $$$. When I see "prizes" I wonder if the person giving needs to advertise that they "gave" for some feeling of self worth.



Shelley said...

NOT. I think I used brown paper bags, rolled down at the top. Micronutrient powder? I'd rather see some long term solutions instead of a stopgap (not that I'm an expert on these things, mind). For charity, I like Kiva - helping people (women) with business loans. When Unicef came collecting at our office (the only charitable collection the State Health Dept. allowed), I ticked Planned Parenthood as my chosen recipient. Not that I'm against children; only that all children should be really wanted. I'm glad I don't have one in school where it sounds like an endless parade of commercial nonsense.

Funny about Money said...

I don't buy junk I don't need, whether or not it's for a good cause.

Dunno about you, but I find pitches like this annoyingly patronizing. The underlying theme is that consumers are so child-like that we need a gimmick or a little treat to get us to donate. In addition to being wasteful, it's offensive.

Duchesse said...

Definitely not. But some people are lazy and will buy them, and a 26.5% donation rate is way better than the 10% a lot of companies use at bait.

I always wondered how many of those UNICEF pennies ever got turned in.

Micronutrient powder or products like PlumpyNut are unfortunately necessary as a way to load in nutrition fast for critically malnourished children. It's a very complex problem.

SewingLibrarian said...

I don't like the school sales, either, but I now understand why the school runs them. The Parent-Teacher Fellowship president told me they net about $30,000 a year on the wrapping paper sale. They certainly wouldn't raise that much by asking parents to donate money over and above the tuition.

Frugal Scholar said...

@All--So I'm not as Scroogy as I think! Thanks!

@FB--I appreciated your Scrooge-themed post too.

@Jenna--I'm sure those were. I wonder if they still have them.

@nicoleandmaggie--It's hard when rationality doesn't win! Maybe you can suggest another activity that might actually make economic sense???

@Iam--Amy D of The Tightwad Gazette did this too. So I feel as though I'm in good company.

@Darla--My favorite was always "The Pennies for Whatever," which had you bring in your change jars.

@Shelley--I've been meaning to look into KIVA. Thanks for the reminder.

@Duchesse--Thanks for the info on the powder. Probably similar to what the Chilean miners were given as their first food.

@Funny--I guess carrying around the burlap FEED bags (they also make a tote) might make for good publicity.

@Sewing--You're so right. Yet the wrapping paper is usually really expensive.