Avoiding Charity Scams Discussed at East Rock

Extension Agent Cristin Sprenger offered a 45-minute presentation to 29 East Rockingham Senior Center members and eight guests on Dec. 14.

Sprenger provided attendees with four pages of information that covered a checklist of precautions to help ensure that donation dollars benefit the people and organizations desired. Specifically, it was suggested that potential donors not be shy about asking who wants their money, rust their gut, and know the difference between tax exempt and tax deductible organizations.

Sprenger pointed out that she was sure the ERSC Director could offer detailed information on donations to VPAS, and Lisa quickly referred to the display board that holds lots of postage paid envelopes to the agency that members could use if they did choose to offer a donation.

One member quickly spoke up and said, “And, donations to VPAS are tax-deductible.” Mrs. Sprenger’s discussion led to much interaction with our group, and several members spoke of being a victim of a scam and others told of how they avoided falling prey to such activity.

Sprenger also told us how to reduce telephone and direct mail solicitations and said the telephone number for the Virginia Office of Consumer Affairs is 800.552.9963, and that the agency is available to discuss related concerns.

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