Charities carefully vetting clients

Habitat For Humanity puts applicants through a rigorous process.

Posted: Dec 23, 2019 11:38 PM

MASON CITY, Iowa - A woman in Northwood is still behind bars after ripping off a charity by faking cancer. We were curious what other charities were doing to stay ahead of fraudsters.

We checked in with Habitat For Humanity of North Central Iowa. They tell us they use a very stringent application and screening process. Habitat checks with the applicant's landlord, friends, neighbors and banks to make sure they are not trying to scam the organization. Melissa Schoneberg, executive director, says they follow the national guidelines for screening their clients.


“Nationwide, Habitats have dealt with different kinds of scenarios, so we've been able to learn from them and we do a lot of things to make sure the things the families are telling is are true,” She said.


Families who participate in Habitat For Humanity are also required to give service time to the organization. Schoneberg says that requirement also helps weed out those who might be looking for a handout.

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