Remember those four sham, interrelated cancer charities we heard about last year? Together, they cheated donors out of $187 million. Donors were under the impression that their contributions would go to cancer patients and cancer related research. In reality, donations were funding dinner dates, vacations, and even a boat!
All too often we hear negative stories about charities, so it’s a much appreciated victory to see the good guys win in the end. Agencies throughout fifty states, alongside the Federal Trade Commission, have worked for years to finally put an end to the unethical practices of these four charities. While the cases were closed in May 2015 for two of the charities (Children’s Cancer Fund of America and the Breast Cancer Society), the cases against the remaining two just closed.
Cancer Fund of America Inc. (CFA) and Cancer Support Services Inc. (CSS) scammed $75 million from donors! By decision of the court, the two charities must permanently cease operations. The order imposes a judgement of $76 million against CFA, CSS, and James Reynolds, Sr., the leader of these charities. Moreover, Reynolds is banned from profiting from any charity in the future. This is huge victory for donors!
So, how can you avoid being the victim of similar charity scams? Intelligent donors don’t give solely in response to heart wrenching appeals! They do their research to ensure that the charity in question is financially healthy, ethical and effective. Exactly, what Charity Navigator is here to help you do.
Unsure of how to make sure a charity does what they claim? Start by asking these questions.