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FL-Based Charity Judged Worst

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Associated Press
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The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

An investigation by the Tampa Bay Times and The Center for Investigative Reporting found the Kids Wish Network spends only about 3 cents of every dollar it takes in on helping dying children and their families. That much money going to professional solicitation companies to get donations is why the Florida-based charity is at the top of the list of America's 50 worst charities. 

The Times points out that many charities rely on corporations to solicit money, but the ones that made the list spent the lion’s share of their money on those types of solicitors. A review of IRS filings shows Kids Wish Network spent about 90 percent of  the $27 million it raised over the past decade on corporate solicitation.

Critics of professional solicitors say they can use unethical approaches; for example, telemarketers persuaded a 72-year-old woman with dementia to give $15,000 to three of the worst charities in the country. 

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.