Charity regulator encourages safer giving for Cyclone Idai Appeal


We are issuing advice on how to donate to charities working to relieve the humanitarian crisis still unfolding in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

This follows the launch of the DEC Cyclone Idai Appeal by the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) on Thursday 21st March.
DEC member charities and their local partners are working closely with the authorities across the affected countries to provide immediate assistance to those in need.

Public support is essential for charities delivering emergency shelter kits, food, water purification tablets and urgent health assistance – so it is vital that donations reach genuine charities.

We want people to be able to give confidently to charities working to relieve the humanitarian crisis, such as through the DEC appeal to its member charities.

The DEC has brought together 13 leading UK aid charities to maximise fundraising and quickly deliver effective emergency relief. They are all registered charities.

Most fundraising is genuine, but we are warning that fraudsters and criminals may sometimes take advantage of public generosity at times of increased giving, using various methods such as fake appeal websites, email appeals that falsely use the name of genuine charities, or appeals from fake charities.

It is important that the public donate safely to genuine relief efforts by following a few simple steps before giving:

  • check the charity’s name and registration number on our online register of charities – it can help you make an informed decision before donating by providing information about each charity, including its charitable purposes and activities, registered contact details, and its compliance and financial history and accounts
  • take care when responding to emails or clicking links to a charity’s website to ensure that they are genuine – instead, search online for your preferred charity to check you have the right web address
  • if you have any concerns about the legitimacy of a request for donations that appears to come from a charity, don’t hesitate to contact that charity directly to request further information
  • when approached by collectors on the street, check whether they are wearing a proper ID badge and that any collection tin is sealed

If you think that a collection or appeal is not legitimate, report it to the police. If you think the collection is fraudulent report it to Action Fraud over the phone at 0300 123 2040 or online.

You can also complain about a charity on our website.

Any concerns about fundraising standards should be sent to the Fundraising Regulator.

More information about the Cyclone Idai Appeal is available on the DEC website.

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