Page:Our Common Land (and other short essays).djvu/111

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A WORD ON GOOD CITIZENSHIP.

abstain from distinctly unwise charity unless we are among them, unless we are ready, too, to consider with them about each human soul, which is to them and to us inexpressibly precious, what is at the moment the wise thing to do. Have most gentlemen any idea how much this work needs doing in the poor districts of London? The Charity Organisation Society came forward now some years ago to try to get the donors of London to meet and consider this question in detail in every district in London. It undertook to look carefully into all cases brought to its offices, and to report the results of its inquiries. It did not undertake to make additional gifts except where they might secure enduring benefit, but it said to the donors, “Associate yourselves, relieve after due thought, after investigation, and in conjunction one with another.” That Society has made great way; it has established offices in every district, and has provided an investigating machinery of inexpressible value, of