Photo courtesty of flickr user NH53 under the Creative Commons license.

The Further Pledge

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Some of our members want to give more than 10% of their income to their chosen aid organizations. Rather than simply increasing the percentage, they can choose to take the Further Pledge:

I recognise that I can use part of my income to do a significant amount of good. Since I can live well enough on a smaller income, I pledge that for the rest of my life or until the day I retire, I shall give everything I earn above a fixed baseline to whichever organisations can most effectively use it to improve the lives of others, now and in the years to come. I make this pledge freely, openly, and sincerely.

This is a serious commitment worth considering very carefully. We do not attempt to push our members into taking the Further Pledge: It is simply another way to give that some people prefer.

How does it work?

Before taking the Further Pledge, it is important to give serious consideration to the annual sum of money on which you are willing to live for the rest of your life (your “living allowance”). Note that this figure will need to be adjusted for inflation, or else it will be too small in real terms within a few years.

For example purposes, let us say that you choose $20,000 per year (to increase with inflation).

If you have children or elderly relatives to support, the reasonable costs of supporting them are not included as part of your living allowance. Nor are essential work expenses, educational expenses or payments on pre-existing debts. Whatever these costs come to (which may well change each year) is added to your total.

Let us say that they come to $5,000 each year, giving a total of $25,000 (to increase with inflation).

You will then need to take tax into account, to give a gross figure. The Further Pledge then requires you to give all earnings above this figure to the most effective charities.

Let us say that $25,000 of take-home pay is $30,000 gross (to increase with inflation). Any earnings above $30,000 should be donated.

If you are interested in taking the Further Pledge, please let us know. We will send you further information about exactly what the Further Pledge involves, and which expenses do and do not count towards your living allowance. As mentioned before, this is a commitment which should be considered very carefully before the decision is made.