Charity Matters Jun/Jul 2017 ISSUE 73. Thank you for your continued support, you can find more articles on eZinematters.com

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Charitymatters

Charity Matters is a free eZine, published every two months, which we think you will find a useful and informative resource.
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SOME REAL CHARITY
"Charity begins at home" runs the saying, and no better example of this in action can be found than the speedy actions of hundreds of local people who donated food and drink, clothes, toiletries, money, blankets, sleeping bags, shelter and accommodation and their time for survivors of the tragic Grenfell Tower blaze last week that took at least 50 lives and injured hundreds, with the number of dead still rising.

This "Blitz Spirit" was provided by ordinary people of all ages, genders colours and creeds who just wanted to help those in their community who had not lost their lives but everything else, and who were not celebrities looking for any personal or corporate publicity for their efforts.

There's another saying, "Virtue is its own reward" that also seems appropriate here.

 

LOW
According to the Charity Fraud Line the number of frauds perpetrated on charities has increased by 30% in three years, with analysts claiming that more than £2 billion a year is stolen from the sector.

Favourite scams include conning volunteer charity treasurers into believing they were paying for building work done by someone else, and getting them to move monies via online banking, into fraudulent bank accounts run by the scammers. Four children's football clubs lost nearly £80,000, and Chester Zoo lost £1.26million in 2013 in this way. In the case of the zoo the money was transferred to a bank account in Weston-super-Mare owned by restaurateur Ashid Ali, 40, who then redistributed the money to 28 different accounts owned by three accomplices. All four men received suspended sentences, on the basis that the court heard that they were not the organisers of the scam but some of the implementers.

This wasn't the case with another scammer caught defrauding charities, Jonathan Louis Rivers. Rivers, 55 from Birmingham ran Wyvern Media, which pressurised its victims, including charities, into buying non-existent or useless advertising, and accordingly Rivers was jailed for six years last October, along with three co-directors who received from 20 to 40 month sentences, and another three co-directors and three members of staff who received suspended sentences. Rivers and his co-directors were also banned from running companies for three to ten years.

According to popular opinion fraudsters who target charities are "the lowest of the low".

 

MISGUIDED?
Claims that refugee charities are paying criminal gangs of people traffickers to ferry desperate migrants to their rescue boats moored off Libya have been made by a senior Libyan coastguard official.

According to the Mail on Sunday the official, Colonel Tarek Shamboor, has documentary evidence that charities pay the gangs, which charge up to £450 per migrant, and which are responsible for thousands of deaths by drowning as their unsafe and overcrowded vessels sink.

The accusations have been denied by the charities.

 

CLEAN UP AT PETPLAN
The RSPCA has welcomed moves by specialist pet insurer Petplan to dump its online-only dog breeder approval scheme and carry out telephone interviews with those applying.

Previously any breeder or supplier of puppies could apply for and get accepted onto the Petplan Breeder Scheme, which gave them a veneer of respectability and the right to advertise their dogs on the Petplan website. Accordingly a number of unscrupulous dog dealers, keeping dogs in appalling conditions and with a very high death rate, signed up.

Earlier this year police and RSPCA officers raided one "puppy farm" in Solihull approved for the Petcare scheme, and found "horrific" evidence of puppies being badly treated, resulting in owner Sean Kerr, 52, being given a six month jail sentence and ordered to pay £30,000 costs for causing unnecessary suffering.

 

FINES FOR FACEBOOK?
The NSPCC has called for heavy fines for Facebook and other social network companies if they fail to delete content that could harm children online.

Recently such content as child abuse pornography, hate preaching, racism and cannibalism has not been deleted by social media companies when it should have, although Facebook claim they are hiring 3,000 extra moderators to address the problem.

 

TUTOR STOLE FOR GIRLFRIEND
A Muslim I.T. tutor stole from his charity employer to pay for hotel stays with his secret Christian girlfriend.

Inner London crown court heard that Qasim Saeed ordered £25,000 worth of computer equipment on behalf of the Second Chance jobseekers charity in Walworth and then sold it to fund the hotel liasons. Saeed of Ilford admitted fraud and received an 18 month jail sentence suspended for two years, 150 hours of community service and an order to repay his employer in full.

 

SOME GOOD FROM BRAVE REMORSE
A dog-owner who was prosecuted after his three dogs died when left in his car without water or ventilation for five hours has told his story on camera to support the RSPCA'S annual DOGS DIE IN HOT CARS summer campaign.

Jonathan Theaobald, 66, from Peterborough left his three Staffordshire bull terriers in his car last year for five hours while he went to the gym. Although the weather was overcast the temperature inside the car reached an estimated 40C, enough to kill the dogs. Theobald pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to dogs, was handed an 18 week jail sentence suspended for two years, was banned from keeping pets for ten years and ordered to pay £1,900 in fines and costs.

In the RSPCA campaign film he tells viewers, tearfully, "I got it badly wrong. I misjudged the weather very badly. I've been prosecuted, I've been banned from keeping dogs and there's been ferocious publicity. But that's just rubbing salt in the wound........ the main thing is losing the dogs in the first place. The house feels painfully empty, we don't have dogs now and that's my fault. My carelessness killed them."

 

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Charity Matters is a free eZine, published every two months, which we think you will find a useful and informative resource. It is distributed monthly to approximately 22,000 selected charities based throughout the UK and is designed to help keep you abreast of issues of potential interest.

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