The Dark Side of Charities

Have you ever gotten an email from a Nigerian prince who wants you to give him money? If you have not, that email is coming at some point.

Charity scams are fairly common. The people running them are willing to exploit some peoples’ want to help out and give back to the community. If you are one of those people who want to give to a charity, good for you. It takes a rare kind of person to donate and help out.

However, it is always a good idea to be in the know before you throw your money at the nearest cause.

There are a few simple common sense points to follow:

First and foremost – if the person soliciting you does not have any real information regarding its organization, you are probably getting scammed. Ask the solicitor about the details: the name of the organization, where it is located, its phone number, the name of the solicitor, and, most importantly, how much of your contribution actually goes to the fund itself. If the solicitor will not give this information, chances are you are getting had (

Also, if guilt is a factor in the solicitation, do not give. Often times, scammers will utilize the guilt of those who want to help in order to get their money.

Thirdly, get in the know about the specific charity. Check the watchdog organizations that look over charities. There should be information about the charity you are giving to ( whole page). For the sake of saying it, never, ever, ever give away your credit card number, account number, or social security number to anyone over the phone. No real charity will ever ask for this information.

Giving to charities is never a wrong thing to do. In fact, it is one of the most rewarding places your funds can go to. However, do not become the needy yourself by giving your important information to fraudulent charities. Contact your local Better Business Bureau if you think you are a target of a charity scheme. You can also contact Project Know Fraud by calling 1-877-987-3728 to report a fraud ( bottom of page).

Chris Buchheit

Chris Buchheit

Chris Buchheit was born under the hot Floridian sun during some year in the 1980s. There he studied school matters until moving to North Carolina in 1999. Possibly due to the fact that his mom had enough of him being inside all the time, he quickly got involved in community affairs via the Boy Scouts of America, where he learned the values of citizenship, morality, duty to God and country, and that the biggest kids get to boss around the smaller ones. Chris attained the rank of Eagle Scout in 2004, and still values the rank as one of his proudest achievements. Beginning in 2006, Chris began attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he quickly learned the value of basketball and poplar trees. Since attending UNC, Chris has been double majoring in Asian Studies, with a concentration in Chinese, and Political Science. When he isn’t slaving over his honors thesis, looking up a bunch of Chinese Characters, volunteering, or mindlessly browsing the same websites over and over, Chris enjoys writing short stories and novels. Much to his roommates’ annoyance, he also spends his free time learning to play the guitar. Above all else, though, Chris values God, his family, and his friends. For the future, Chris plans to apply to Georgetown to further his studies in Political Science, hopefully with a concentration on China. Pending acceptance into Georgetown, Chris would like to study while gaining professional experience in a government job in Washington DC.
Chris Buchheit

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