On its website, Ship4Charities describes itself as “a shipping logistics company that donates to charity for each package shipped.”
But an in-depth investigation by "Glistening, Quivering
Underbelly" indicates that the organization may be executing an
elaborate charity donation scam, one using legitimate charities as its
In the fourth installment of an exclusive five-part investigative
series, “Glistening, Quivering Underbelly” reveals more fraud and
deception by Ship4Charities.com, the truth about two more "charity partners", and one outrageous claim that truly takes the red velvet with buttercream--that's cake, folks!
VELO-CARDIO-FACIAL SYNDROME EDUCATION FOUNDATION, INC.
The Velo-Cardio-Facial Syndrome Educational Foundation, Inc. (VCFSEF) is an
organization comprised of both professional and lay people whose purpose
is to educate the public, the scientific community, families of
individuals with Velo-Cardio-Facial syndrome, and individuals with
Velo-Cardio-Facial syndrome (VCF) about this common genetic disorder.
Based in Dallas, the VCFSEF supports an international network of resources and support information.
When contacted by Miss Fortune about its partnership with Ship4Charities, Executive Director Dianne Altuna responded via email. In her message, Altuna said that although she wished she could speak about Ship4Charities, "we were ready to launch this program two years ago, but have not as yet".
But that pesky little bit of business housekeeping didn't stop Ship4Charities.com from promoting its new "partner" on Twitter and Facebook...and collecting money on its behalf.
Ship4Charities.com still features VCFSEF on its site as a "favorite cause" although the group will never receive a nickel of the money raised in its name.
Focus: HOPE's Mission was adopted on March 8, 1968 and has remained
consistent ever since. The Detroit-based organization is committed to its mission as
well as its proclaimed values: recognizing the dignity and beauty of every person, we pledge
intelligent and practical action to overcome racism, poverty, and
injustice and to build a metropolitan community where all people may
live in freedom, harmony, trust and affection.
Although Ship4Charities.com began promoting its partnership with Focus: HOPE nearly a year ago, a spokesperson confirmed in an email what she told Miss Fortune during a phone conversation about the organization's relationship with Ship4Charities.
The Focus: HOPE spokesperson explained that the group's Facilities Manager had discovered Ship4Charities and recommended it to its Development Manager. The spokesperson confirmed that Focus: HOPE was "new to Ship4Charities and we hadn't started to promote it yet" and that organization had not received any funds donated in their name via Ship4Charities.
Although Ship4Charities has been collecting money on behalf Focus: HOPE for almost a year, the spokesperson confirmed the organization had yet to receive any donations.
VETERANS JUSTICE OUTREACH
But here's Miss Fortune's personal favorite. Call it balls, call it cojones, call it chutzpah--just a few of the choice words you can use to describe this brazen act.
Are you ready for this? Ship4Charities.com claims to "give generously to Veterans Justice Outreach". But there it is on the order screen, a "favorite cause" drop-down window for Veterans Justice Outreach.
Holy Eric Shinseki! Ship4Charities actually wants you to believe that it's giving money to a program completely funded by Uncle Sugar?
OK, so it's just collecting money to "give", since it's pretty clear that Ship4Charities believes charity begins at home.
According the the Veterans Administration, the Veterans Justice Outreach initiative "limits the criminalization and unnecessary arrest of Veterans suffering
from acute and persistent mental illness through a targeted outreach
program including many experiencing homelessness. VA Medical Center
teams work to ensure that eligible justice-involved Veterans either
currently experiencing homeless or reentering communities from
incarceration receive appropriate mental health and substance abuse
services. This outreach initiative involves collaboration among VA
Medical Center points of contact, local law enforcement, and treatment
services to provide for the needs of Veterans helping to avoid
subsequent arrests and involvement with the criminal justice system."
And this initiative is funded through the Department of Veterans Affairs and administered by local Veterans Justice Outreach Coordinators in each
Yes, that's right. You all do your own donating every April 15!
Ship4Charities claims an affiliation with and financial support of a taxpayer-financed program?
Why, your girl Miss Fortune may have finally found herself a federal case!
PART 5: COMING SOON