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Bureaucratic Double Speak


A friend kindly sent me the following story and it reminded me of another similar episode I personally experienced. Before I tell you my experience here is his story.

My daughter called me at work to say I was to phone “Josh” at the bank regarding my account. So, I called my bank and the operator asked me what Josh’s last name was and I explained that he hadn’t left his last name.
When she asked for his department, I said that I didn’t know.
“There are 1500 employees in this building, ma’am,” she advised me ra
Baloney Detectorther sharply.
After a few more brusque comments, I was becoming angry so I asked
her for her name.
“Danielle,” she said.
“And your last name?” I asked.
“Sorry,” she replied, “we’re not allowed to give out last names.”

As you will know we run a ministry called Christian House Sitters which has a two-fold aim.

Firstly we enable Christians all over the world to enjoy vacations that they may otherwise have found difficult to afford. This is done by offering all our registered sitters rent-free vacations and by offering our registered home owners someone reliable who will look after their home and pets free of charge while they are away. This has blessed hundreds of people all over the world.

Our second aim is to use all income received from our sitters registration (they pay £25 a year. Owners pay nothing) to support the Home of Peace Children’s Home in Kenya.

Because of this second aim we are a registered charity with the Charity Commission of England and Wales (reg number 1156786) under the name TLC Children’s Fund.

When we applied for registration we were asked for our aims and said:
“To provide for vulnerable children in Africa thorough the provision of funds for food, clothing, accommodation, education, medical expenses, etc.”
The Charity Commission wrote back asking “What do you mean by the word ‘vulnerable’?

We replied:
“These are children who are either orphans or who have only one parent who is unable or unwilling to support them. Without support these children will resort to living on the streets and rely on begging or stealing to survive. This is a major problem in that part of Kenya.
Before any child is accepted at Home of Peace the Administrator, Mr. Erick Owino, carries out a full investigation into their circumstances. This includes contacting the Area Chief in their home village, informing Children’s Services in Siaya, and interviewing anyone who knows the children or their family. The Dept. of Children’s Services receives a monthly report on all children accommodated at the home.”

They wrote back saying the word ‘vulnerable’ is not a word with a clear meaning and we needed to change our wording to.

“To relieve the needs of orphans and other underprivileged children and young people in Kenya in particular but not exclusively by the provision of funds for food, clothing, accommodation, education and medical care.

We did and they registered us.

Now the double-speak. Before anyone can be registered by the Charity Commission as a Charity Trustee they need to sign the official Trustee Declaration. Part of it reads as follows
“Working with vulnerable people”
Does your organization work with children or vulnerable adults?

I am confused. Double Speak

How can they ask about working with vulnerable people and then say the word vulnerable is unacceptable as it is not a clearly defined word?

Bureaucracy gone mad again.

If you are interested in Christian House sitters please Click Here

If you are interested in TLC Children’s Trust then please Click Here

My friend who sent me the Bank story also sent this which may help explain why people working for large organizations often speak in riddles.

Buzzword Bingo

How to play: Simply tick off 5 words heard in one meeting from the following list and shout out BINGO! It’s that easy!

Proactive, not Reactive
Win-Win Situation
Think Outside the Box
Take That Offline
On the Same Page
Strategic Fit
Gap Analysis
Best Practice
The Bottom Line
Core Business
Lessons Learned
Touch Base
Game Plan
In the Loop
Out of the Loop
Go the Extra Mile
The Big Picture
Movers and Shakers
Ball Park
Fast Track
A Done Deal
Empower Employees
No Blame
Stretch the Envelope
Knowledge Base
Total Quality
Put The One to Bed
Move the Goal Posts
Peel the Onion Back

Testimonials from other players:

“I had only been in the meeting for five minutes when I yelled BINGO.”

“My attention span at meetings has improved dramatically.”

“The facilitator was gobsmacked as we all screamed BINGO for the 3rd time.”

“I feel that the game has enhanced the overall quality of meetings per se on a quid pro quo basis.”

“People are even listening to mumblers, thanks to Buzzword Bingo!”

God bless you,




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About housesitters

ABOUT Christian House Sitters Christian House Sitters is a Worldwide ministry that started in order to provide holidays for Christians and sitters for owners who needed a reliable Christian to look after their home, pets and garden. House owners do not pay anything to have their property listed. House sitters are only charged £25 per year and in return for this some enjoy numerous holidays each year. All fees from membership go to sponsor food for children at the Home of Peace Children’s Home in Kenya. This only supplies about a quarter of what is needed to feed the children so we urgently need sponsors. All funds go via our Registered Charity TLC Children’s Trust Charity Number 1156786 website N.B. Joining Christian House Sitters does NOT commit you to sponsoring a child or giving any support beyond your membership fee to these children. Although naturally if you want to support that would be greatly appreciated. We have some regular sponsors and other people who give an occasional gift. All are greatly appreciated. ABOUT RAY & MARILYN We are Marilyn & Ray White. A fun loving Christian couple who have been in Christian work for over 30 years. Marilyn was born in England but moved to Zimbabwe as a baby. At the age of 16 she moved to South Africa. Ray was born in South Africa and grew up on a farm. We met in Johannesburg and got married in 1966. Ray worked in business for many years then he worked for YfC in South Africa then went on to Bible College and Pastored a church. In 1982 we moved from South Africa to England. In addition to his theological training Ray trained in Psychology and since moving to the UK he has lectured in Psychology, counselled for the NHS and opened a Christian Counselling Centre. Marilyn is also a trained counsellor and manager. In addition to the counselling we trained Christian counsellors both in our local area and by invitation in other areas of the UK. In total over 700 people completed the training courses. Many are serving the Lord by working in or through their local churches. We also ran a secular Stress Management business. We are now semi-retired and focus our time and attention on Christian House Sitters and Ray also serves as a member of our Church Leadership Team. Ray also has an active preaching ministry and runs Christian seminars on subjects such as stress management for church groups. He has written two books. A Christian book that is a very practical workbook on Christian commitment as applied to real life. The book looks at how we can surrender ourselves more fully to God. This is looked at under the headings of Physical, Mental, Social and Spiritual commitment. The book is called Let’s Get Serious. He has also written a secular book on Stress Management called Stress Overcoming this Potential Killer. (Ray was previously Chair of the International Stress Management Association UK). News Update This book has now been released as an e-book as well A few years ago we did a 2 month House Sit in France. Whilst there we felt the Lord leading us to set up a Christian House Sitting service. Since then we have done a number of other house sits. We believe this site will benefit many Christians around the world. Feel free to contact us (BUT please no spam) NOTE: If you want a fast reply the best way to contact us is via the contact page on the Christian House Sitters website God bless you, Ray & Marilyn

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