Friday, November 24, 2017

The Continuing Fraud of the RSPCA

The national RSPCA's 2016 budget was £143 million,
or the equivalent of $190,777,015 in US dollars, serving a human population of 56 million in England and Wales.

Of this sum, the RSPCA re-homed all of 8,000 dogs.

Except that they didn't.

Those dogs were actually rehomed by the RSPCA's independent branches, which the national RSPCA does almost nothing to support, and which it actively undermines in the charity marketplace by siphoning off local money using aggressive direct mail and online marketing campaigns.

In fact, the national RSPCA spent over £22.3 million on fundraising in 2016, which is 365 percent more than they spent supporting all local branches that are actually rehoming dogs and cats on the ground.

In short, over 94 percent of all RSPCA income was going to something other than helping dogs and cats on the ground.

Most of that money was going to pay for people to dress up as fake law enforcement officers.

Despite their store-bought uniforms and badges, the RSPCA actually has NO police powers or special enforcement rights. The whole thing is a pantomime.

The RSPCA also spent large sums harassing no-kill animal charities that are in direct competition with them in the charities marketplace.

The RSPCA also spent large sums of money harassing farmers putting food on the table, as well as legal fox hunts.

The RSPCA also spent money on very expensive "hospitals and animal centers" that actually do not provide free care to pets, but instead take in injured wildlife that, for the most part, should have been put down quickly and cheaply.

In short, the supposed "work" of the national RSPCA is actually a complete lie, its management a complete shambles, and the whole thing is perched on a tower of fraud, misrepresentation, and inbred thinking.


LRM said...

Disconcerting though it may be, donor prospect research IS widely practiced, especially among larger nonprofits. Planned giving is a vitally-important source of revenue. The key is performing it with sensitivity and discretion, two qualities that appear to have abandoned the RSPCA in practically every area where it matters. It is honestly difficult to imagine how this place has survived for nearly two centuries with such thoroughly mediocre 'leadership.'

PBurns said...

I have done nonprofit fundraising for over 35 years (still doing it), and while bequest and planned giving programs, along with capital campaigns, etc. are the norm, they never involved hiring outside investigators to badger the ancient and bewildered as the RSPCA has done.

The general goal in fundraising is to move the $20 donor up to the $120 slot, the $200 donor to the $5,000 slot, the $5,000 donor to the $50,000, etc. It's all about building a relationship, telling a story, and (hopefully) giving the donor some metrics of success.

The RSPCA is the worse kind of charity: a pure direct mail machine, fueled by emotion and fear-mongering, bent on targeting mostly elderly women.

Give the RSPCA 20 pounds, and they will spend it all getting you to donate 50 more, and on and on it goes.

In the end, direct mail mills like the RSPCA have little relationship with their members, and their vendors are heavily incentivized to get money out of "the list" any way possible, whether it is by selling the lead, sending fake bills, calling on the telephone, or overtly lying about where the money is going or how it is to be used.

Read this for details >>

LRM said...

I understand and appreciate what you wrote, not to mention your commitment. Hats off to you. Clearly, you have more than a passing acquaintance with best practices in the field. I hope you are having a good day.

My point was that some of these tactics exist, legitimately, even if unseemly. I would add that a number of worthwhile (and credible) nonprofits utilize both the membership model and direct mail, without resorting to unethical behavior. I doubt I need to tell someone with your experience how hard it can be to raise money, especially from individuals. (BTW--this is not to say that ROI for direct mail is generally strong for fundraising; outside of donor acquisition). But when you throw an incompetent board into the mix, it can become impossible.

Again--this is in no way a defense of the RSPCA’s behavior— quite the opposite.

My first nonprofit job was at a large Midwestern museum, where I witnessed firsthand how communications can be mishandled, unfortunately especially with the elderly who are, of course, a huge segment of the donor class. It’s part of the reason I no longer do fundraising. Resource development is exceptionally demanding and important work. Even when the mission is appealing, the personalities so often aren’t. RSPCA—is but an extreme example of it.

PBurns said...

I've written quite a bit about the direct mail of the U.S. Humane movement.

The Humane Society of the US and the ASPCA paid scores of millions od dollars out to settle a RICO racketeering lawsuit.

See >>

See >>

Other posts:





More here on why HSUS and the ASPCA and PETA are bad for dogs >>