CHILDREN can be tender souls. Pitch them a sob story and they often swallow it whole. Reflect the harsh reality outside the school gates, however, and they develop sophisticated strategies for making hard choices. That, at least, is the early experience of an initiative to teach philanthropy to young teenagers.
Two years ago the Big Give, an organisation which collates information about 6,000 charities worldwide in an attempt to foster philanthropy, asked the fee-paying Dragon School in Oxford to run a pilot programme. It gave the school £1,250 to donate to charity and asked 13-year-old pupils to decide where the money should go.