Who isn’t familiar with the good works of Ronald McDonald House? As kids, we sold World’s Finest Chocolate bars to support the charity and even dropped a coin or two into the plexi-glass donation boxes at the restaurant register before we scooped up our fries. We were doing good so that Mickey D’s could do good.
Apparently, it’s not all good.
You see it turns out that McDonald’s is allegedly a minor financial supporter of its own Ronald McDonald House Charities and should immediately stop linking longtime spokes-character Ronald McDonald with it, says a consumer advocacy group in a recent report dubbed “Clowning Around with Charity: How McDonald’s Exploits Philanthropy and Targets Children.”
The 30-page report, funded by Corporate Accountability International and The Small Planet Fund, charges that McDonald’s is mostly using the charity as a branding device for its food sales because the corporation, itself, contributes so little to the charity. While McDonald’s reaps 100% of the “branded benefit” from the charity, it contributes only about 20% of the money, the report charges.
The report does not accuse McDonald’s of doing anything illegal with its namesake charity. The issues it highlights are ethical. Among the report’s recommendations: McDonald’s should rename Ronald McDonald House Charities and fire Ronald McDonald as a spokesman.
McDonald’s reportedly has no such plans.
Even McDonald’s customers, the report charges, contribute as much as 1.5 times more to the charity than does McDonald’s itself.
Turns out, all charity isn’t good charity after all….