Don't be conned by bogus charities!
25th February 2010
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I was sent this through an email the other day by Angela Smith Thurrocks Local MP, and thought it may be of interest to yourselves.


Don't be conned by bogus charities!

We get a number of 'charity' collection sacks delivered to our homes but how we can tell if they are from a genuine charity or are just a scam to raise money? People have raised it with me as your Member of Parliament and also in my position as the Charities Minister. Some charity shops rely on house-to-house collections of goods to sell in their shops - but unfortunately there are bogus organisations who appear to be collecting for charity but are merely selling the goods for profit and costing the genuine charities at least £2 million each year. How can you tell? Well, first look to see if the sack or leaflet has a registered charity number (you can always check this by calling the Charity Commission on 0845 300 0218 or by checking on line at and read the small print. An organisation that vaguely states that it will help 'sick kids' or 'abandoned animals' is unlikely to be a genuine charity if there's no more information than this.

If you're really not sure, why not just drop your goods into the local charity shop. And, some charity shops even offer a 'gift aid' scheme whereby the government will pay back the tax on the value of your goods that they sell. The Barnados shop in Corringham and the Sue Ryder shop in Laindon both have a gift aid scheme and the St Lukes Hospice shops in Basildon and Corringham are just starting it now.

Tell Me What You Want...

I've just spent a cold but sunny morning at Pitsea Market talking to local residents about what they want in terms of health, social care and housing services. Too often people in offices decide what services should be provided in an area and this can lead to gaps in the care or support people need. So Essex County Council and the Primary Care Trust are working with the charity Turning Point, and talking to local people who use or would use their services to ask what they want and what would best address their needs. The plan is that all the information collected in the course of a year will better identify where the problems areas are, so all the agencies involved can work together to provide the healthcare and associated services people really want and need. There are community researchers from Pitsea and Vange (Steve, Katy and Sue) who are the ones who really know the area. It's a good idea but it'll only work if when all the information is collected those planning servcies take on board what's been said.


Angela Smith

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Andrew H

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I have been the director of thebestof Thurrock since September 2008. I hope you enjoy your experience upon visiting this site and I would encourage you to use some of the fantastic businesses that appear...

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