Sun setting on the first day of winter directly out from the Venice pier. Photo by Kris Dahlin

Charity solicitation fraud

This year my mailman delivered numerous solicitations, including a package from the Disabled Veterans National Foundation (DVNF). It strongly suggested I make a donation in exchange for their gift of gardening gloves, greeting cards and ballpoint pens.  They were betting my donation would easily cover the several dollars they undoubtedly spent to procure and deliver the merchandise.

However, my response has been quite the contrary. Instead, their overblown “gift” has motivated me to research their organization and alert others not to donate; the DVNF charity is such a gross scam that it has been the subject of a report on CNN. In 2020, the DVNF’s IRS form showed more than 80% as “solicitation expenses.” Do I need to say more?

Charities incorporate the terms ‘veteran” or “warrior” in their names to appeal to those with a soft spot for the U.S. military. Unfortunately, too many deliver few benefits for the dollars received. Do check with before donating to make sure your hard-earned dollars will go where they’re supposed to go.

Michael Ernstof
Mar Vista