This is one of the most ridicules digressions in a forum I have seen for some time.
Is Theravāda selfish? The reality could be mixed.
When on alms-round in BKK I often would pass by the homeless, and would give them offerings right out of my bowl. I was admonished for this by senior bhikkhus, that the laity did not like seeing this because they give to bhikkhus to make merit and think this merit is diminished when the offering is not consumed by the bhikkhu, which is purely superstitious bunk. Yet at the wat, and after the morning meal, we all gave excess food to the temple boys and beggars who came by.
As far as I know, the Washington Buddhist Vihāra (home to B. Bodhi in his early years) still provides a feast on Thanksgiving for the homeless, coordinated and distributed by the monks.
The attitude I have personally received from senior bhikkhus toward humanitarian-aid in general has been that the Saṅgha should not get involved. But there are many cases of bhikkhus, famous and obscure, who help meet needs locally or extended; and these efforts may be received by the public with either praise or blame depending. One endeavor which receives mixed feelings in Thailand is Wat Phra Baht Nam Phu in Lopburi which offers a on-site hospice program for those dying of AIDS; much of the Saṅgha disapproves and the Thai government is embarrassed by an effort which they ignore, otherwise the laity are sympathetic generally.
From what I see, Theravāda has a great deal of support and facility, and even though this is shared somewhat ad-hoc, if the effort could be organized and coordinated between its institutions the result could be amazing.
“I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.” – Henry David Thoreau, Walden, 1854
Secure your own mask before assisting others. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)