When Solicitors Call...


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When you get that telephone call when you walk in the house from a hard day's work, are in the middle of a meal, or have just sat down to relax, you may be annoyed and let your "FACS guard" down. Keep the following in mind before you agree to anything. Ask these questions to the voice at the other end of the line.

  1. What is the specific purpose of the organization?
  2. Exactly what kinds of programs and services carry out the purpose?
  3. Does your group provide services to my local community? If it is a police or firefighter organization, does any of the money benefit my local departments?
  4. What percentage of my contribution is used for the charitable purpose?
  5. How much of my contribution goes toward salaries and other administrative costs?
  6. Are you a paid solicitor or a volunteer?
  7. Does the organization have an annual report that contains a detailed financial report? Is there other written information about the group for me to review? (Ask for copies!)
  8. Is the group registered as a charity?
  9. Will my donation be tax deductible? (Call the Internal Revenue Service at 1-800-829-1040 to check if the group is exempt.)

If a telephone solicitor is unable or unwilling to answer these questions, insist on written material before making a decision to donate.

DO NOT BE PRESSURED INTO MAKING AN IMMEDIATE DECISION.  Report questionable contacts to the Attorney General's Office at 904-487-1963.