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The Best Phone Call Ever {written by one of our past volunteers at GA: Sarah Day}

January 13, 2011

Giving Anonymously: Hi, my name is Sarah, I’m calling from an organization called Giving Anonymously. Is Steve there?

Hesitant Woman: Um…what organization? Oh, yeah, Steve is here.

[shuffling sounds and woman calls out in the background, “Steve! Phone!”]

Steve: This is Steve.

Giving Anonymously: Hi Steve, my name is Sarah and I’m calling from a non-profit organization called Giving Anonymously.

Steve: [sounding irritated] Oh, no thanks, I don’t want it.

GA: [smiling and quickly interjecting] Steve, I’m actually not selling anything. This is going to sound strange, but our organization let’s people give money to their friends or family while remaining completely anonymous.

[At this point Steve sounds almost more skeptical so I charge on trying to convince him]

GA: We have a website where someone that you know made out a virtual check to you. I’m just calling to let you know that we’ll be mailing that check to you and to make sure we send it to the right address.

Steve: [still doubting but doesn’t sound like he’s going to hang up on me anymore] Um…this is…interesting…

GA: [I laugh out loud] Yes, it is a little hard to believe, I know. We encourage you to go to our website and make sure we’re legitimate. Check out our press tab and see what the New York Times has written or what NBC Nightly News has said.

Steve: Um, ok. [pause and Steve sighs audibly] Wow.

[At this point in the conversation I always get so excited. The recipient starts to believe what they’re hearing and it’s always incredible to get to listen to their first reactions as the idea sinks in.]

GA: So Steve, with your permission, I’ll read to you the address that your secret donor gave us so we can make sure to send the check to the right place.

Steve: ok, what do you have?

GA: [I read the address]

Steve: Yes, that’s correct. But I still don’t understand…If this is a scam…

GA: I understand this sounds really unusual, and you’re absolutely right to be skeptical. It actually is for real though — someone you know just wants you to have this gift with no strings attached, no expectation of return, no awkward feelings between the two of you.

Steve: Well, who is it?

GA: I’m sorry Steve, that’s the only thing I can’t tell you. We promise our donors that we’ll keep their identity secret.

Steve: Well, what do I have to do?

GA: When you get the check in the mail, it will come with a phone number for you to call and leave a thank you message for your secret donor. We’ll send that message to them so they know we followed through on our end and sent you their money.

Steve: [starts to cry on the phone] It’s just that no one has ever done something like this for me before!

GA: [I’m inspired even more at this point] I’m so glad that someone cares so much for you and has done this for you. Are you willing to accept this gift?

Steve: [still sniffling] Yes.

GA: Great. Well, it will be sent in the mail to you in the coming 2 business days. Be looking for it in the mail. Merry Christmas Steve.

Steve: Thanks. Merry Christmas to you, too.

Note: This was a real conversation but the names have been changed.

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 13, 2011 6:25 am

    David and I laughed so hard while reading this…loved getting in on that phone call.

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