I find articles like this (click very frustrating to read. When I read reports on how charity was delivered, I am expecting to read numbers that will give me an idea of how money was used for such relief. Unfortunately, the information provided is simply not enough to provide any ball park idea of what was actually spent.
The report states that almost 750 homes were repaired or rebuilt. “Or”? Really? Obviously, more efforts are needed to rebuild a house rather than simply repair it. How can we make an estimate of time based on this? Let’s use an example here: You are asked to know if you have enough water to fill a pool with 750 bottles of water and “5 Gallon” containers. It doesn’t make sense. The actual quantity could be anywhere between 580 to 14,214 liters!
So, let’s go with the worst possible scenario and claim that ALL 750 had to be rebuild. With a 5 days per 5 volunteers (as stated in the report), we can conclude that it would take a team of 16 volunteers to do the work in one year. Provided that they worked 5 days per week and had 4 weeks’ vacation!
So what about the 612 volunteers mentioned in the article? Obviously most of these worked for short periods of time and very for the entire length of the project.
As the article admits, most of the work was done by locales while 90 Witnesses from other countries also assisted. What did they do? How long did they stay? We don’t know.
With so little information, we may come to this pessimist conclusion:
A small amount of funds was indeed made available to the witnesses when the disaster occurred. However, most of the work and resources reported in the article has in fact been provided for by the 190 000 publishers in the Philippines. This conclusion is based on the fact that not all of the Philippinos live in poverty.
With this in mind, it would not be surprising to hear that all the donations spent on this disaster had in fact been covered by local donations within the year in their respective “World Wide Work” contribution box.
You think this conclusion is unfair? The simplest way to rebut this is to provide clear numbers: How much money did the Watchtower
1) provide for the relief effort?
2) receive in donations from the Philippines in the last 10 years?
3) spent in their preaching work in the last 10 years?
Why should we care?
Articles as this one remind to the reader that donation are also used for charity. As a result, this article links to a FAQ article named “How is the Work of Jehovah’s Witnesses Financed? In the third paragraph, the reader will notice that the first example of expense covered by the donation is “relieve victims of natural disasters”. Does the order of that list represent the order of priority for the expenses?