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Thanks for the post. Good to see good news stories.



hi Beth
My 19 year old son is working for the Baptists in Brazil. To get there he had to raise £2000. His biggest fundraiser was a public headshave promoted through Facebook which earned him (or rather BMS) £1,100.
However I think one of the important building blocks over the last 5 or 6 years has been an annual Christmas gift of £30 to his grandkids by my father in law to be given to charity. The children have to pick their own charity and write with the cheque. They often get personal letters from CEO's and have appeared in charity newsletters. This teaches them (a) giving is a good habit, and (b) there are rewards for getting involved.
PS - he gives them nice gifts too!


Hi Beth, this is a great post. I'm far from having children of my own, but I do think about ways to get my hypothetical kids involved in the community at an early age. These are great ideas that I can use with my nephew for now! Thanks!


Barbara Kelly

Make it a family affair: I'm linking you to a conversation on ammado, a global communications and giving site, that describes how a family can create a funding community with the beneficiaries it chooses and then display their values/choices in a family giving circle.....

The conversation also includes links to two articles in the Wall St Journal about family giving.

Thanks! Barbara Kelly,

Vincent St. Paul

You probably would change your mind about Ammado if you knew that its owners, Peter Conlon and Anna Kupka, did NOT PAY staff at their other company, Xsil, last year and have still refused to pay them in spite of court judgements against them.

I always laugh when I see them try to claim that they "care" about other people. More than 40 people spent last Christmas in serious financial trouble because of Ms. Kupka and Mr. Conlon. That includes children and pregnant women and people with mortgages. And the worst part is that Xsil assets were sold for $2.3 MILLION early in 2009 and Mr. Conlon and Ms. Kupka STILL won't pay people's salaries. How "charitable" is that?

Please don't just take my word for it. The evidence is out there:

You're free to make up your own mind, obviously, but I would hope that nobody would want their kids copying the owners of Ammado. Ever.

I would suggest that if you want to give to charity, give DIRECTLY to charity and not to Ammado.

Anna Kupka

Dear Beth, it’s Anna from ammado, thank you so much for mentioning us, we would be more than delighted to work with any charities and help them with their fundraising; and of course they can just come and sign on to

Please allow me to clarify a couple of things in relation to the above post which mentions Peter Conlon and I. The statements in the post are false and are clearly defamatory under Irish Law. This may explain the reason why the person is using a fictitious name to hide his identity. If he were to publish his real name then we would certainly institute proceedings against him in the Irish courts.
Peter and I both left Xsil 3 years ago and the company only failed last year. While we stayed on the board of Xsil, it failed under a different leadership primarily due to its inability to generate the next generation technology despite spending several €millions of funds in R+D to do so and partly due to the start of the global financial crisis which hit the semiconductor capital equipment industry earlier than many other industries. While Peter was running Xsil, it was one of the most profitable companies in Ireland and one of the big success stories in the semiconductor industry worldwide. In his last year as CEO the Xsil group of companies made a pretax profit of €8.5 million on sales of €38.3 million. In October 2008 the directors of the Xsil companies were presented with a situation where Xsil Ltd could no longer continue as a going concern. The Xsil group situation is very complex and the executive management had left. The directors are being advised by an insolvency partner at one of Ireland’s top commercial law firms. The issues involved in winding down the Xsil group of companies are very complex as it had operations in several countries around the world. A public blog is not the appropriate forum to address these issues.

Suffice to say that under Peter’s leadership Xsil was completely professionally managed and this was recognized by the many awards the company won including: The Sunday Times - Management Team of the Year Award, Deloitte & Touche Fast 50 Award, the Irish Software Association Company of the Year Award, the Tornado Finance Award, the Price Waterhouse Coopers National Innovation Award. Xsil was also listed as one of the Red Herring Top 100 Private Companies in Europe.

Peter himself has also been honoured with many awards over the years, such as Ernst&Young Industry Entrepreneur of the Year, Person of the Year by the Irish Software association, he was nominated by Morgan Stanley for the Computerworld Honours Award for his endeavours in ammado and he serves on the boards of several nonprofits/colleges.

Thank you for allowing me to clarify this, Beth.

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