The Susan G. Komen Foundation for the Cure which doles out $93 million dollars in grants to organizations and non profits for breast cancer screenings and treatment annually got a lot of heat over its decision to no longer fund the middle man and to go with direct grants to centers, facilities and organizations that directly does breast cancer prevention, screening and treatment services.
One of the organizations that fell prey to this new policy was Planned Parenthood.
In 2010, Komen gave $569,000 to Planned Parenthood. That’s a small fraction of its grant awarding.
Advocates and supporters leaped to PP’s defense. The Amy and Lee Fikes’ foundation donated $250,000 prompting PP to open up a Breast Health Emergency Fund. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg pledged to match every donation to PP dollar for dollar up to $250,000 out of his own pocket.
Individual supporters of Planned Parenthood said they will no longer support the Komen foundation and will now only directly give to Planned Parenthood.
In a statement on their administration decision, the private grant-awarding organization said:
“We are dismayed and extremely disappointed that actions we have taken to strengthen our granting process have been widely mischaracterized. It is necessary to set the record straight. We regret that these new policies have impacted some longstanding grantees, such as Planned Parenthood, but want to be absolutely clear that our grant-making decisions are not about politics.
I once co-founded an organization and our mission was to go after those who wanted to give directly to an organization with little overhead, little administrative and salary costs and could guarantee donations go directly to those who needed the help.
Millions of dollars given to several national nonprofits are used to fund administrative costs. My husband and I donated money to a friend of ours who is traveling to Haiti this week. She is collecting donations which she will personally use to pay for housing for homeless women, help them start businesses and pay school fees and other living expenses. Much of the money given through large organizations is coopted by corrupt government officials, misappropriated, misdirected and do not always go to the people who need it most.
Komen has altered its policy similarly to make sure funds go directly to the source.
Planned Parenthood does NOT offer mammography services. All it does is conduct cursory exams during check ups and initial baseline checks which can be done by the organizations which actually do the mammography, screenings and other treatment services.
I take them at their word that it was indeed a pure administrative decision.
|A Komen march for the cure walk|
One can only wonder whether the several dozen other middle man groups impacted by this decision will get the same support and donations to supplement the loss. I doubt it. It helps to have a brand name that evokes passion and empathy as PP has.
It’s interesting that those who claim they support women will turn their backs on the thousands of other organizations and health clinics that get funding from Komen all because a sacred cow in their eyes, PP, has been defunded. Then these same women say politics should be separated from health care for women. Maybe they should practice what they preach.
With a known brand, which does in fact do a lot of good for low-income women and women in general, PP can get sympathy when it loses a line item source of funding because its fanatical supporters will inevitably point fingers and step up to the plate to supplement any loss revenue source.
With this decision, PP has already replaced the lost revenue from Komen and is winning.
Komen’s brand however is suffering among many women, especially pro-choicers.
Why can’t we all get along?