Social Media Misinformation, Penny Appeal Update
With Ramadan now behind us, we wanted to offer a huge thank you to everyone who donated to our life changing appeals. Your kindness will continue to change lives around the world after we experienced one of our best Ramadans to date.
It is regrettable that during the blessed month of the Quran, there is a tendency for some people to focus on weaving misleading narratives about others rather than participating in the reflection and community spirit that is called for. False words have no place in this time of ṣawm.
Penny Appeal is addressing misinformation about our organisation spread on social media by the founder of a Muslim dating app, and fundraiser for a fellow Islamic charity. We encourage everyone to check information before believing and sharing it, and we urge our supporters to question the motivations and actions of those who seek to undermine our work and reputation.
Nevertheless, we know that these false accusations have caused distress among some of our communities, so we would like to summarise several key matters regarding our organisation and how we operate:
- The proportion of our expenditure which goes directly to charitable activities is higher than the UK average, and 89% of your donations go straight to those in need, as shown in our 2021/2022 accounts. Furthermore, our 100% Zakat policy helps to ensure every penny of Zakat directly benefits the people we support.
- Penny Appeal makes investments which are in the long-term financial interest of the charity – and by extension those who we support through your donations. This includes investing in premises which will decrease our costs long-term, and generate rental income which can be used to support charitable activity. In the short-term this investment does increase our costs, but it will help us deliver even greater impact moving forward.
- Penny Appeal has normal commercial relationships with various organisations in the Muslim and Islamic entertainment space, including British Muslim TV. None of Penny Appeal’s trustees have any share, ownership or part ownership of British Muslim TV. This is a relatively small market and therefore there are relationships between companies delivering services in this area which are normal and not improper. Penny Appeal discloses all information on this as part of our commitment to transparency.
- Penny Appeal seeks the highest standards in accountability. That is why we were the first Muslim charity to seek audit from a ‘big four’ accountancy firm, going above and beyond requirements. This put us in good stead to develop strong levels of governance, procedures and processes. Our auditors have never found any improper behaviour at our organisation.
- Penny Appeal is in regular contact with the Charity Commission, which is normal practice in the sector and helps us to continuously enhance our governance and processes. The Charity Commission is an active regulator and we regularly disclose the fact that we are in ongoing communications with them as part of our commitment to transparency, going above and beyond requirements. Penny Appeal has never been under a statutory inquiry by the Charity Commission.
We hope this will provide some reassurance to donors who may have questions following the groundless accusations we have sadly faced.
We stand accountable for every single penny donated and we will always welcome any further queries our donors and supporters wish to raise. Our doors are always open, please feel free to email us via: email@example.com or give us a call on 03000 11 11 11.
We would also urge supporters to read the analysis of experienced internal auditor and financial governance advisor Nasir Rafiq, which can be found here.
We thank you again for your support, and hope Allah (SWT) rewards us all for our sincere intentions and efforts. Ameen
FRIDAY 28 APR 2023