April 2011
From The Director


Due to the disaster caused by the earthquake and resulting tsunami on March 11 in Northern Japan, this month's article will discuss on how you can help those affected.  We will specifically focus on how to determine if a charity is legitimate and how to avoid those that are not.   

Our thoughts remain with all who have suffered since March 11, and we continue to hope for Japan's recovery.

Best Regards,

Imants Katlaps
Managing Director


In light of the disaster in Northern Japan caused by last month’s earthquake and subsequent tsunami, this month’s article will focus on how you can help in terms of pinpointing and donating to a legitimate and reputable charity.

Unfortunately, the creation of fraudulent charity organizations following natural disasters is not all that uncommon.  Sadly, some people use such situations to take advantage of people who genuinely want to help.  Here are some tips to help you weed out the con artists:

  • Don’t respond to unsolicited emails asking for donations
  • Don’t agree to give a donation to a telemarketer, and never give your personal details over the telephone
  • Make sure that the charity’s website is legitimate.  Frequently, a fraudulent charity will create a website that is identical to that of an actual charity.  Make sure that the web address you have entered is correct (without misspellings and with the correct suffix in the domain name).
  • Avoid giving to newly created charities.  It takes time to set up a non-profit organization or charity legally.  Anyone claiming to have set up a charity in the days following a natural disaster is likely trying to pull a fast one over on you.
Just as you would want to be sure of the legitimacy of any organization to which you entrust your money, you should also do the proper research on any charity to which you intend to donate.  There are quite a few good ones out there.
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