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Swedish charity pays millions to telemarketer

TT/The Local · 27 Oct 2010, 09:13

Published: 27 Oct 2010 09:13 GMT+02:00

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The National Association of Home and School (Riksförbundet Hem och Skola) received slightly more than 42 million kronor in donations during two campaigns last year.

However, nearly 34 million kronor in contributions went to a telemarketing company, according to an investigative report SVT's Uppdrag Granskning programme published on its website on Wednesday.

The programme will air a report about its investigation on Wednesday evening.

The agreement between the agency and Pool Media gives Pool 800 kronor for every 1,000 kronor donated, the report said.

The agreement with the telemarketing company is not only very expensive for the agency, it is also very long, extending to 2027.

Neither Pool Media CEO Morgan Falk nor Hem och Skola Chairman Ronny Kanstrup were willing to discuss the details of the contract with SVT.

In an application for state subsidies, the agency stated it has 40,000 members, of whom at least half are students or parents. The large number of reported members resulted in the organisation receiving 675,000 kronor in state subsidies last year.

Story continues below…

However, the organisation actually has about only 3,900 members. The remainder that are reported as members are companies, municipalities and counties that donated money to its campaigns, according to the report.

According to Swedish Collection Control, which controls collections to other charitable organisations, including BRIS (Barnens Rätt i Samhället) and Save the Children, the rule is that at least 75 percent of the money should go back to the organisation.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:23 October 27, 2010 by StockholmSam
"Neither Pool Media CEO Morgan Falk nor Hem och Skola Chairman Ronny Kanstrup were willing to discuss the details of the contract to SVT."

Of course they weren't interested in discussing the details. It is an obvious corruption kickback scheme between Mr. Kanstrup and Mr. Falk. Both men will walk away from all of this rich and happy, assuming the Swedish legal system performs as usual.
10:17 October 27, 2010 by Rishonim
Indeed StockholmSam. This is corruption 101 and nothing will be done to those fat cats. They probably have political clout since it is a charity organization and the ones who will get screwed are the donors and childrens.
10:58 October 27, 2010 by eppie
How bad I find this, it is not corruption. It is the advancement of capitalism in fundraising. If you can pay a company to fundraise for you and do it better than you would be able to do yourself it fits within all the laws of capitalism. In the US there are companies providing signatures for petitions and in return get paid for this. I think we should seriously look at these excesses of our western 'democracy'.
10:58 October 27, 2010 by EtoileBrilliant
What's Steve Ballmer got to do with any of this ;-)
11:38 October 27, 2010 by Tennin
80% is a bit too extreme for their cut.
15:30 October 27, 2010 by ironman294
A real charity would only spend 10% or less on overhead. If they told donors how much was actually going to overhead they would not receive any donations. Cannot a Swedish government monitoring council shut down this "charity" and take back all the money from the telemarketers and put it towards orphanages and the housing shortage mentioned in the article above?
16:19 October 27, 2010 by Swedesmith
As much as I am in favor of those who have helping out those who have not, one must be very careful about which charity you donate to. Some are little more than scams.
19:30 October 27, 2010 by janswed
I have to say here in Canada this is common, I used to give to charities sponsored by the Police and F irefigther organisations untill it was disclosed that over 75 procent went to the overhead collection co. That was the end for me.Never again. And by the way completely legal,not so moral perhaps.
21:30 October 27, 2010 by Ruby Harrold-Claesson
The information in this article that 'Hem och Skola' is a national association dealing with child custody issues is incorrect. Hem och Skola is in fact the Parent-Teachers' association and they are only interested in school matters.

According to the information in this article the organisation boasts of 40,000 members whereas its only has 3,900 members. Well, this is not the first time that a Swedish organisation "blows up" the number of its members in order to get subsidies. In the late 1970's the social democratic youth organisation, SSU, filled its membership lists with the names of their pets, their grandparents etc - in order to get more money from the state.

Also, congrats Hem och Skola and Pool Media to a very lucrative and well negociated contract. The contract must have been negociated by your most brilliant minds!

Ruby Harrold-Claesson


President of the Nordic Committee for Human Rights

00:32 October 28, 2010 by Toonie
"How bad I find this, it is not corruption. It is the advancement of capitalism in fundraising. If you can pay a company to fundraise for you and do it better than you would be able to do yourself it fits within all the laws of capitalism."

It's the Big Business 'Something-for-Nuthin' model. This isn't real business, which offers a product or service and relies on satisfied customers to make a living. It's a scam, since it is not transparent. If it's 'legal' in the sense that it's not strictly against the law, then there is something very wrong with law-making. Don't know how you're set in Sweden these days, but folks in the UK have had a bellyful of the 'New Labour/Thatcherite/Clintonite/Bushite' model of 'being extremely relaxed about people becoming filthy rich' (as Lord Mandelson put it). He added 'provided they pay their taxes', as he was duty-bound to say, but didn't seem particularly eager to propose (or fund) methods of making sure they did so. The astonishing situation, politically, is that we now have a Conservative-Liberal coalition govt that is way to the left of the previous Labout govt in what it actually does. Labels don't mean a thing. Give 'em hell, whoever they say they are. We've all surely had enough of these jokers.
05:50 October 28, 2010 by Da Goat
Finally someone has found a way to screw small children and donors without getting in serious trouble, while gaining much pleasure, as well as getting well paid!

at last a legal form of paedophilia! and one can be dickless and still pull it off!
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