Lessons From My Week As A Door-To-Door Fundraiser

In my search for gainful employment I was led astray into the seedy underbelly of door-to-door canvassing. A world where self righteous back patting runs high and acceptance for the word ‘No’ runs low. A system built on moral hypocrisy and guilt trip pleas.

I spent a week being one of those annoying people we all universally hate who bug you in your own home on while you’re trying to catch up on Boardwalk Empire in order to sign you up for some save the world project and collect your hard earned coffee money. Yep. For five days in the glaring sun that self-satisfied nuisance was I.

For reasons that may surprise you, it didn’t work out between me and this face-to-face fundraising company. Turns out I just wasn’t cut out for it. Who’d have thought? My name is practically synonymous with ‘charity’. I’m a few acts shy of qualifying for sainthood.

That asshole who cut me off this morning’s continued existence is proof of that.

In all fairness it’s not like these people are all a bunch of pretentious, new age  douche nozzles or anything. They were actually a pretty decent group of people. However, what their impression of me was I can’t be sure. I decided it was best to say as little as possible out of fear of exposing myself as the loathsome human being that I am. Whether or not they were intuitive enough to pick up on my black heart and that one domestic abuse joke I made is uncertain.

Either way the purpose of this post is simple. About an hour ago I received the phone call informing me that things “weren’t going to work out with you and –(insert company name here)- at this time” and frankly I’m teetering on pissed.

The reason given for my failure to pass evaluation was my insufficient ability to procure enough “paperwork” ie: money.

However I’m pretty confident that the real reason for my sudden release back into the unforgiving wilderness of unemployment was that I sympathize too much with the person on the other side of the door. I’m uncomfortable making people feel like they’re a bad person for not signing up for a monthly payment to some charity no matter the cause.  And I don’t wanna be that chick who makes you tell me ‘no’ twelve times before I leave you the fuck alone.

In light of this I see they were right. Things wouldn’t have worked out between us. We’re just two different them and I. They believe in doing all they can to better the lives and welfare of who/whatever the organization paying them to do so supports, and I believe in needing money to pay my rent. But mostly we could never be for these five reasons:

1. I’m pathologically afraid of rejection which accounts for 82% of the job.

2. I have no sense of direction. I get lost on my way to places I’ve already been. Trying to find assigned streets was a nightmare.

3. As already stated in a prior post, I don’t fucking like kids. I can only pretend to care about their needs for so long.

4. I have to be out in the scorching sun all day. This leads to wearing the shared B.O. drenched blue vests and those awkward tan lines that I’ve spent so many hours topless sunbathing to avoid.

5. I have to deal with old people. Just no. On this I will elaborate at a later date.

Now, I figure in order to redeem myself from this crime of ruining the dinners and television viewings of my fellow Vancouverites and in an act of sweet succulent (bordering on passive-aggressive) revenge I should expose their tactics and give you tips to counter act these terrorist attacks against your bank accounts. Was terrorist attacks too far? Too bad the strain in my quads from walking up so many sketchy and unnecessarily long sets of doorsteps is currently in possession of all the fucks I give.

TACTIC: There are a few things fundraisers do in order to try to win you over. First they’ll ask you something along the lines of “How’s your day going?” and then probably say something about the weather. This is not because they give a shit, it’s part of a routine they’re required to do to make you feel more comfortable.

TIP: They’ll nod politely and respond when necessary to whatever info you give them. I say have fun with it, go off on a tangent about what time you woke up, what you had for breakfast, what your shampoo smells like, your best poop of the day… just needless bullshit. See how long you can go before they interrupt you.

TACTIC: After that they’ll tell you what group they’re here for and ask you how much you know about the organization. They’ll give you a run down and then dive into a heartbreaking depiction of orphan children with tails and bleak futures before telling you what they’ve done to make it better. Then they’ll present another issue and how you can help. This is all part of an intricately crafted “Emotional Roller-coaster” specifically designed to evoke specific reactions from you in order to make you more susceptible when they hit you up for money.

TIP: DO NOT GET ON THE ROLLER-COASTER! The only thing this ride has in common with the ones you find at the theme parks is you will loose all your mother-fucking change. Call them out right from the get go. Just cut them off with a “So you want money” or some variation; it will cut their pitch short.

TACTIC: They’ll try to back peddle, “we are looking for a small monthly commitment, but it’s more than that…” and then they’ll try to get you back on that hellish ride to a better tomorrow.

TIP: Straight up just tell them you aren’t interested. They’ll ask you why and I promise you they will have a rebuttal to whatever concern you may have. Here are some rebuttals to common rebuttals.

“I need to discuss it with my partner”


THEM: “I understand, but we are looking for individuals. I’m sure there’s an amount you know your partner would be comfortable with. We all make a lot of small purchases a month without consulting our partners.”

YOU: “I don’t. My boy/girlfriend says I’m so hopeless I gotta consult him/her before I even think about entering a Starbucks. A couple months ago I went for frozen yogurt with my sister. I couldn’t see out my right eye for eight whole days.”

“I’m on a fixed income” or “I’m a student”



THEM: “I understand. Believe me I don’t make a whole lot of money doing this, but everyone is able to spare a little even if it’s only $10 a month.”

YOU: “I actually only have 57cents to my name. This isn’t even my house. I’m squatting while the family is out of town. They’ll be back next week and it’s back to scoping out warm corners for me.

“I already give to lots of causes”


THEM: “Really? That’s great! Which ones?” It’s a test!

YOU: “Lets see. There’s World Centre for Population Control, The Church of Scientology, Log the Rainforest Foundation, Racial Cleansing Foundation of Canada, and World Vision.”

Following these few simple tips and I guarantee you’ll have no problem fending off canvassers. Hell if you do it with enough commitment you might even be free of them for as long as you stay at your current residence. Nothing scares good samaritans off like acting bat shit crazy.

(DISCLAIMER: You don’t have to be rude or slam the door in anyone’s face.These are generally decent people who are just doing their jobs. Yes, they’re annoying but that doesn’t mean that what their promoting isn’t a good cause. They’re just misguided in their pursuit.)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s