I disagree with your post and I believe that many, if not most, of charitable donations are poorly spent
Really? I'd be interested to hear why you think that. Are you speaking from personal experience? Have you been involved with different charities and been dismayed or shocked when you looked at how poorly run or wasteful they were?
I gave just one example of what my parents did. But, I was surrounded by people that worked for Christian missionary agencies, and non-religious organizations overseas while growing up. They all did a wide variety of things from straight religious work, education, running hospitals, building houses, schools, wells, teaching better agricultural techniques, etc...
All of that was funded by donations to the non-profits that they were working for. If you want to call that other work "quais-charity" I guess that's up to you. But, I've been involved in the grass roots with many different non-profit's and that's pretty much what the vast majority of them do.
I can't think of a single organization out of the dozens that I personally interacted with that simply handed out cash to people.
Dude I was a missionary for a few years. But that's not the point. And your personal experiences (and mine) are irrelevant when it comes to looking for the unbiased data about whether there is waste in the world of charity. Do you agree?