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      Annual Scrooges and Angels list released for 2009

      In the following news release, South Carolina Secretary of State Mark Hammond announced today the fourteenth-annual Scrooges and Angels for 2009. The ten Angels and one Honorary Angel were recognized at a press conference and honored with a reception in the Secretary of State's Office following the announcement.

      The Angels honored represent organizations that exemplify charitable giving in South Carolina. The Angels recognized, with the percentage of their program expenses that went toward the program activities, are listed below. Those recognized are in alphabetical order, and are not ranked by the Secretary of State.

      Angels for 2009

      • A Father's Place, Conway, SC 88.1%
      • A Place for Hope, Inc., Rock Hill, SC 83.1%
      • Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, Dublin, OH 89.2%
      • Dress for Success Worldwide, New York, NY 92.7%
      • HopeHealth, Inc., Florence, SC 89.8%
      • Metanoia, North Charleston SC 88.5%
      • Palmetto Conservation Foundation, Columbia, SC 90.1%
      • Pendleton Place, Inc., Greenville, SC 95.0%
      • Trinity Housing Corporation, Columbia, SC 93.1%
      • Volunteers in Medicine Clinic, Hilton Head Island, SC 82.8%

      The Angels were selected by review of financial reports submitted annually to the Secretary of State's Office. The following criteria were considered: the charity must have been established for at least three years; has collected revenue greater than $20,000; 80 percent or more of the revenue must go toward the charities' program goals; makes good use of volunteer labor; and receives minimal funding in grants. The panel also sought to showcase charities with different missions, and chose charities across South Carolina and the United States.

      Secretary Hammond also recognized an Honorary Angel this year: Honor Flight South Carolina. Based in Columbia, Honor Flight South Carolina is taking World War II veterans to see the National World War II Memorial and Arlington Cemetery in Washington, DC, free of charge. "Our World War II veterans are dying at a rate of 1,400 per day. It is only right that we do all we can to see that they get the honor they deserve, and give them the opportunity to experience the Memorial dedicated to their service and sacrifice," said Secretary of State Mark Hammond.

      The designation of Scrooge is based upon the charitable organization's failure to spend a high percentage of their collections on the stated program activities and/or the high use of paid (professional) solicitors. The Scrooges chosen, with the percentage of their program expenses that went toward the program activities, are listed below. Those recognized are in alphabetical order, and are not ranked by the Secretary of State.

      Scrooges for 2009

      • Cancer Support Services, Dearborn, MI 23.6%
      • Heart Support of America, Corryton, TN 28.9%
      • Intl. Assoc. of Firefighters, Local 793 (Columbia Firefighters), Columbia, SC 22.4%
      • Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund, Arlington, VA 14.3%
      • National Wheelchair Basketball Assoc., Colorado Springs, CO 39.5%
      • Police Protective Fund, Inc., Los Angeles, CA 23.9%
      • Reach Our Children, Inc., St. Louis, MO 23.5%
      • Survivors and Victims Empowered, Manheim, PA 31.1%
      • United States Public Policy Council, Fairfax, VA 31.7%
      • Veterans of Foreign Wars of the US, Southern Conf., Oklahoma City, OK 18.2%

      The Scrooges were selected by review of financial reports submitted annually to the Secretary of State's Office. The following criteria were considered: the charity had given 40 percent or less of the revenue to the charities' program goals; collected revenue greater than $20,000; had many complaints filed against them; and spent a large amount of money on the use of professional fundraisers rather than volunteers.

      "As Secretary of State, I have the duty of enforcing the Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act, and of protecting the public against "Scrooge" organizations that want to take advantage of our giving spirit" said Hammond. "Charitable solicitations across the state have increased in the last two years because more and more people are in need of assistance. Even though times are tough, South Carolinians continue to be some of the most generous people in the nation and always answer the call when it comes to defending and helping the less fortunate. However, there are those who would take advantage of our generosity. So I ask that you check out any organization before you contribute your hard-earned money. Please visit our Website at www.scsos.com; select the "Charity Search" button to access information on charitable organizations, or call our Charities Division at 1-888-CHARITI (242-7484).

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