Scrooges and Angels List Of SC Charities Released - WSPA.com

Scrooges and Angels List Of SC Charities Released

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Charities will be asking you donate, but is your money going to the designated cause? Charities will be asking you donate, but is your money going to the designated cause?
COLUMBIA, S.C. -

During the holiday season, and throughout the year, charities will be asking you to donate. But is your money going to the designated cause?

South Carolina Secretary of State Mark Hammond has released the 18th annual Scrooges and Angels list. It includes 20 charities - 10 that have gone above and beyond in making sure their money is donated to their cause and 10 that are giving less than 40 percent of their donations.

This year's Angels include:

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Columbia, Inc., Columbia, SC 85.6%
  • Camp Pee Dee Pride, Florence, SC 96.6%
  • Debi’s Kids, Inc., Charleston, SC 90.3%
  • Fort Mill Care Center, Inc., Fort Mill, SC 97.6%
  • Healthy Smiles of Spartanburg, Inc., Spartanburg, SC 83.1%
  • Hitchcock Woods Foundation, Aiken, SC 88.2%
  • Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society, Parris Island, SC 88.3%
  • Second Helpings, Hilton Head Island, SC 80.2%
  • Southeastern Guide Dogs, Inc., Palmetto, FL 84.6%
  • Tamassee DAR School, Inc., Tamassee, SC 81.8%

Healthy Smiles of Spartanburg executive director Kitta Cates says the agency provides free dental care to children in Spartanburg between the ages of 4 and 18. They're able to put more than 83% of the money they get because they work "lean and mean" she says. "We have some great volunteers who work with us. The partnership that we have with the Spartanburg Community College takes care of a lot of the overhead we otherwise would have in our budget," she says.

To be selected as an Angel, the charity must have devoted 80 percent or more of its total expenditures to charitable programs. On the other hand, Scrooges keep more money than they give to a cause. This year's top offenders include:

  • Army Historical Foundation Inc., Alexandria, VA 16.4%
  • Breast Cancer Survivors Foundation, Inc., Aventura, FL 19.3%
  • Feed Our Veterans, New Hartford, NY 25.6%
  • Firefighters Charitable Foundation, Inc., Farmingdale, NY 7.0%
  • Gaffney Elks Lodge BPOE #1305, Gaffney, SC 11.9%
  • International Union of Police Associations, AFL-CIO, Sarasota, FL 16.8%
  • Law Enforcement Officers Relief Fund, Sarasota, FL 0.9%
  • Louis D. Simmons American Legion Post 215, Inc., Columbia, SC 3.2%
  • Roger Wyburn-Mason & Jack M. Blount Foundation for the Eradication ofRheumatoid Disease, Fairview, TN 34.7%
  • Walker Cancer Research Institute, Inc., Aberdeen, MD 32.4%
We called the contact number listed with the Secretary of State's office for the Louis D. Simmons American Legion Post 215 but got no response. We physically went to the building and knocked on the door but no one answered.

We were able to contact the leader of the Gaffney Elks Lodge BPOE #1305, the other "Scrooge" from South Carolina on the list. Linda Simmons told us, "I would like to find out how he came up with these figures, where they came from and what we can do to get it corrected because what we give in Cherokee County is unbelievable." She says the lodge donated to The Humane Society, Meals on Wheels, and to an Alzheimer's charity, and paid expenses out of their own pockets.

The Scrooges and Angels list is updated each year. Hammond also gives tips on how to detect a phony charities.

Don't give money if you receive a bill or invoice from a charity you haven't pledged to. You should also never give money to a charity if they are vague about what cause the money goes towards.

"South Carolinians continue to be among the most generous people in the nation; however, we must guard against those who want take advantage of our generosity. I ask you to research charitable organizations before you give to make sure high percentages are going to the organization’s program services," said Secretary Hammond.

You can check out a charity through the SC Secretary of State office's website, here. You can also call 1-888-242-7484. There are also over 50 charities from the Upstate that are suspended currently, to see a full list,click here.

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