A POPULAR charity is appealing for people to keep an eye out for bogus fundraisers on the streets of Hampshire.
Clothes Aid is a charity that takes people’s old clothes and sells them on to European second-hand department stores, and since forming in 1996 has raised more than £10m which has gone towards partner charities such as Make A Wish and the NSPCC.
The charity is popular in the Portsmouth area.
But recently the charity has hit a stumbling block whereby people are posing as collectors for the charity.
Paul Taylor,the marketing officer for Clothes Aid, explained: ‘Our research suggests that almost two-thirds of collection agencies in the Hampshire region do not actually have a licence.
‘These bogus operators are defrauding the public and taking funds away from genuine charities.’
Letters are being sent to every local authority in the region requesting that more scrutiny is placed on clothing collections and asking licensing departments to deny licences to firms which do not adequately share their profits with charities.
Mr Taylor added: ‘It is incredibly important to us that the kind and generous people in and around Portsmouth are not put off donating their old garments to Clothes Aid.
‘We want to remind everyone who lives in the arae that donating their clothes to charity is an environmentally-friendly way of fundraising and that more money could be raised for charity if bogus organisations were eradicated.’
Collection officer Andy Payne said: ‘Every time we receive a tip-off about a suspicious clothing collection, we make contact with the local council to see if they have issued a licence for companies to raise funds in this way.
‘Some authorities are incredibly helpful, but sadly there are councils which do not even respond to our inquiries.’
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