The recent lawsuit by the family of Melinda Duckett is seeking an accounting of Team Trenton donations. It will be up to the attorneys to decide what that accountability is. The Better Business Bureau does define standards charitable organizations should meet. The Internal Revenue Service also has guidelines if they are seeking tax-exempt status by organizing as a 501 (c) 3 charity.
On a recent visit to the Jennifer Kesse site, the Orlando woman who went missing in January, there was an article about a missing child organization. A report uncovered by Channel 9 Investigates may make donors to Child Watch or any charity think twice.
Visit Child Watch and you will probably get the impression it is very involved in missing children. Per their website, they are a publicly supported charitable organization.
“…All of the programs and services provided by Child Watch are offered FREE to parents. Child Watch relies totally on corporate sponsorships and private donations.
Child Watch is a 501(c)(3) Tax-exempt charity and is a publicly supported organization as defined in sections 509 (a) and 170 (b)(1)(A)(vi) of the Internal Revenue Service Code…”
Based on the article I decided to re-visit the site. Normally you might not be concerned about some little things and maybe they are merely just my own pet-peeves. For instance, there are no “last updated” notations on any page so you don’t know if it was this year, last year or 2004 when references are made to previous years.
Click on Resources, Abduction Response Team, or Articles and all you will see is a brief “coming soon” on each page, the same message you would have received earlier this year. It might not seem strange except that they were founded in 1993 so you might think that information would be easily obtained.
There is an Annual Report, but it has no financial details provided. They do list scheduled events but not the year, just month and day. Try to contact them and your e-mail address may exceed the field length.
In the Channel 9 report it states,
“…The Wise Giving Alliance, part of the Better Business Bureau, found Child Watch doesn’t meet nine different standards for charitable giving. The group found there is no board of directors providing oversight, no audited financial statement to inspect and no annual report….”
Don Wood, President/CEO said it was not a big deal. It may not be.
Whether the issues raised are addressed is their decision. If nothing more, the standards may be useful to those seeking to make donations to Missing Children charities.