Legitimacy concern over some Givealitte pages

  • 17/07/2015
Michael Gousmett (Photo: 3 News)
Michael Gousmett (Photo: 3 News)

A woman is awaiting sentencing after she faked a terminal illness and set up a Givealittle fundraising page.

But it seems there is a new online fundraising campaign almost every day.

The family of Chiefs assistant coach Andrew Strawbridge set up a page to raise funds for a Samoan hospital, a woman started a page to help Greece, and shockingly the sister of the Charleston shooter set up a funding site asking for donations, after her wedding had to be rescheduled because of the massacre.

Charity Sector researcher Michael Gousmett, says he is surprised at just how many appeals are on the Givealittle site at one time.

"When I had a look at the site, I hadn’t seen it for some time, but I spent some time last evening having a very close look at it and there is something like 3415 different appeals actually on their various categories."

Since the conception of the Givealittle website, $31.3 million has been donated to various causes.

That number, which is constantly rising, concerns Mr Gousmett who says there is no way of telling if the cause you are donating to is legitimate.

She says this goes against the Charities Act, brought in to regulate the charitable sector, ensuring entities comply with certain obligations.

"At the end of the day, I could find no assurance as to how that money is being accounted for, all I could find is that it's being held in a trust somewhere. This is why we have a charities regulator; this is why we brought in the charities act 2005.

"So while this is an excellent idea… I do have concerns about the ability for people to set up a page, to raise funds. There's absolutely no way to contact that person to discuss what that fundraiser might be applied to," he says.

3 News