Gransnet forums


to be asked to contribute?

(84 Posts)
granoffour Thu 08-Feb-18 12:01:45

I have recently joined a local bookclub - only one meet-up so far . Everyone seems very nice (there are about 8-10 of us). All new faces to me even though I've been in the area for a few years now. The one lady is moving to Spain next week so I got an email from one of the women asking to contribute £15 towards her leaving gift. I've only met her once and haven't had more than a brief chat. I rely on my pension and I don't have a lot of spare cash. I wouldn't object if she was a friend of course but I don't want to cause bad feeling though as I've just joined the group. It's a bit awkward. Any ideas on how I should handle this?

baubles Thu 08-Feb-18 12:05:36

That sounds unreasonable to me. I wouldn’t contribute £15 to a gift in those circumstances. Is it a new group that you’ve just joined, have all the others known each other for longer?

grannyactivist Thu 08-Feb-18 12:09:41

In your shoes I would offer a fiver and explain your situation just as you have on here. People who can afford such money are often simply unthinking and I doubt would take umbrage.

granoffour Thu 08-Feb-18 12:11:29

It's an established group - an acquaintance told me her friend was in a bookclub and set it up for me. I get the impression some of them have known each other for a long time but I didn't get a chance to chat with many of them. The couple I sat next to were very welcoming and not clichey at all.

Crafting Thu 08-Feb-18 12:13:56

£15 is a lot of money. Unless the others are all very good friends it seems a huge amount for a leaving gift. I would suggest a reply like the explanation you gave here and make a small donation or say you will give her a small gift yourself (nice bookmark or something).

gillybob Thu 08-Feb-18 12:21:57

Just as others have said. Explain that you are happy to make a token gesture to the leaving gift but can't afford £15 considering you barely know the lady.

glammanana Thu 08-Feb-18 12:39:58

A token gift and a card will certainly suffice and I'm sure it will be appreciated by the lady.

Notagranyet12 Thu 08-Feb-18 12:40:41

Yes, I think all those comments are dead right. £15 is a huge amount to spend on someone you have only met once. It's a shame you've been put in this awkward position though, the person asking should have realised that this really wasn't on. You are definitely not being unreasonable.

Alexa Thu 08-Feb-18 12:59:23

I have never heard of such huge contribution to a simple leaving gift ! As has been said just explain you cannot afford more than £1 -£2. Even that would be too much for folk who are on only the basic old age pension and who want to join the group.

Charleygirl Thu 08-Feb-18 13:03:59

That is a ridiculous sum of money requested even if you had known her a while. I do not see why you contribute anything other than maybe a card especially as you have never had any dealings with her.

ninny Thu 08-Feb-18 13:12:50

Perhaps the email went out to all the members of the book club automatically. Just ignore it.

Squiffy Thu 08-Feb-18 13:23:26

I'm really shock at the amount requested, even if you'd been a member for a longer time! It would be far more diplomatic and sensitive to have a collection bag/box/whatever and let people donate the amount they wish. Even long-term members may feel rather ambushed!

Luckygirl Thu 08-Feb-18 13:27:24

I agree that £15 is a lot, even if you knew her better and had been in the group for a while. It would have been better to just ask for contributions rather than setting a figure.

I do think you should just say that you are happy to give £x as finances are tight and leave it at that.

What a peculiar position for you to find yourself in.

Nonnie Thu 08-Feb-18 13:46:04

I agree. Either ignore it and they can assume what they like or explain why you don't feel you can contribute so much.

If you ignore it and someone chases you then simply explain why you don't feel £15 is appropriate and that you would rather do a small thing yourself than contribute less than the others as that would be unfair to those who had contributed the full amount. No one could object to that but they might to you giving less than everyone else.

I'll bet you are not alone.

OldMeg Thu 08-Feb-18 13:55:06

Just ignore the request.

BlueBelle Thu 08-Feb-18 14:00:40

Even in an established group I wouldn’t give £15 and for someone I d only met once for a brief chat I m afraid I would ignore it totally surely with most ‘group buys’ it’s either left to you to put what you can in or given a small token amount like £2 or £5 at the most
I certainly wouldn’t give her a personal card and/or gift as you don’t know her at all

HurdyGurdy Thu 08-Feb-18 14:12:50

Blimey - I must be tighter than tight. If I'd only met her once, and had no more than a brief chat with her, I wouldn't be contributing anything at all.

Not wishing to sound unkind, but she would mean nothing to me, and wouldn't leave any kind of a gap by not being there.

It would be different if I'd known her for a long time. But even then I think £15 for a leaving present is a lot. Donations should be voluntary and only what the donor wishes to give.

HurdyGurdy Thu 08-Feb-18 14:14:26

And I don't think you should be justifying why you can't/won't donate or if you do choose to donate, justifying the amount you give.

BlueBelle Thu 08-Feb-18 14:18:30

I totally agree Hurdygurdy my feelings also

maur59 Fri 09-Feb-18 09:39:40

I would just give a card

harrysgran Fri 09-Feb-18 09:47:03

I know how you feel where I work we are often asked to contribute to presents for those I hardly know .I am on a small income compared to other colleagues so I either just give what I can afford or if it's someone I know well I buy my own small gift .Don't stress about it if these people don't accept this then maybe it says a lot about the type of people they are.

Sparklefairydust Fri 09-Feb-18 09:49:34

I would expect it's an email that just got sent to everyone, I would either just ignore it or reply saying you've only just joined and so don't feel able to contribute, I think anyone would understand that. It is a lot of money though even if you had been there a while.

Fran0251 Fri 09-Feb-18 09:51:55

Was it a "round robin" request, just sent to the whole group without much thought? In which case the advice above is right and appropriate and you wouldn't be expected to contibute much, if any.

Nanny123 Fri 09-Feb-18 09:54:29

I hate it when collections do the rounds and you are asked to give a certain amount. Peoples financial situations can vary so much - you should be asked to contribute what you feel is appropriate for you

Butterflykisses Fri 09-Feb-18 10:08:45

I would imagine the email was a round-robin one for all the members of the group. I'm sure none of them would expect you to contribute so much after such a short acquaintance. A carefully chosen bookmark or a couple of pounds would be fair in my view. Explain if you feel you should, but please don't feel under pressure. x