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Children's Cancer Center warns of sham fundraisers.

Summary: The Children's Cancer Center of Lebanon warned supporters of fraudulent operations pretending to fundraise for them, after an organization operating under the name Swiss Services sold toothbrushes at popular nightlife areas and claimed the proceeds went to the center.

BEIRUT: The Children's Cancer Center of Lebanon warned supporters of fraudulent operations pretending to fundraise for them, after an organization operating under the name Swiss Services sold toothbrushes at popular nightlife areas and claimed the proceeds went to the center. In a statement released Thursday, the center said it had received a number of inquiries about the legitimacy of the fundraisers and added that they have "no relationship with the center."

The Children's Cancer Center "does not rely on the method of fundraising in the streets and on roads, and does not resort to the method of random telephone calls or knocking on doors to request donations," the statement said.

The statement came after Joe Maalouf, host of the LBC show Hawa al-Horriye, invited Omar Alaf, the head of Swiss Services the group that has been distributing the toothbrushes and collecting purported donations and the cancer center's fundraising manager Nisrine Tannous, to appear on his show.

On the show, Alaf maintained that Swiss Services was a legal organization with a team of volunteers that was legitimately trying to help the cancer center. Maalouf mentioned Badaro and Mar Mikhael as among the areas where the organization was distributing its goods.

Tannous said the center had refused cooperation with the group because it did not approve of the fundraising methods and had asked it not to use its name. Despite this, the center continued to receive reports that Swiss Services representatives were claiming to be collecting donations for the center.

Swiss Services also posted a picture of a donation for $1,000 made to the Children's Cancer Center, but Tannous said it was made in the name of Alaf personally, not the name of the organization.

Maalouf asked Alaf where the rest of the money raised had gone: "In three days, you're gathering $1,000, right? In two months, how much are you taking in? Where is the money?"

In its statement released Thursday, the cancer center urged anyone with information about organizations collecting money in its name to call 01-351-515 or 70-351-515 to report the case.

The center also included information on how to donate through its website, along with online donation forms.

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Publication:The Daily Star (Beirut, Lebanon)
Geographic Code:7LEBA
Date:Oct 26, 2018
Words:418
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