While most charity fundraisers are genuine, unfortunately some are fraudulent. The Charity Finance Group has revealed that hundreds of millions of pounds intended for charities are lost every year as a result of fraud.
If you doubt the authenticity of an email, letter, social media message or telephone call claiming to come from Mary's Meals, please contact us to check. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
Top tips for avoiding charity scams
What to look out for -
- Ensure that any online donations are made through our official website, or via authorised partners like JustGiving. You can check if a site is secure by looking for https and a small padlock image in the browser.
- We will not contact you unless you have donated to Mary's Meals or have asked to be contacted.
- Any emails or letters that we send will include our official logo, address and charity number.
- Check the address all emails come from. If the sender does not have a Mary's Meals email address, this could be a warning sign.
- Incorrect logos or links to websites unconnected to Mary's Meals may also be an indication of potential fraud.
- If you receive a suspicious phone call from someone claiming to be contacting you on behalf of Mary's Meals, hang up and contact us directly.
If you're unsure of anything or want to check with us before you make a donation, please don't hesitate to contact us by phone, email or via social media.
How to report fraud
If you know of, or suspect that charity fraud has taken place, it is extremely important that you report the incident to the appropriate agencies. Who you should contact depends on the 'type' of fraud that has taken place. Take a look at the guidelines below for a better understanding of who to call, and when.
If you are aware of an act of charity fraud that poses immediate or significant loss or harm then you should consider contacting your local police force. Read more about reporting online fraud to the police here.
If the fraud relates to online banking, cheques, your debit or credit card, or fraudulent activity in your bank account you should contact your bank or credit card company immediately. The bank will cancel any cards affected and may freeze your accounts while they investigate.
Let us know
Remember, if you doubt the authenticity of an email, letter, social media message or telephone call claiming to come from Mary's Meals, please contact us to check.