ShelterBox row continues as three affiliates quit Helston charity
Three international ShelterBox affiliates have severed ties with the charity as the fallout from the sacking of founder Tom Henderson rumbles on.
The Helston-based charity founded by Mr Henderson 12 years ago has helped thousands of victims of natural catastrophes all over the world.
But it has been thrown into crisis following Mr Henderson's dismissal as chief executive in July, when an offer to him to take on the role of president was also withdrawn. He is currently appealing against his sacking.
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It has now emerged that three of its international affiliates – France, Brazil and Norway – have left the charity's international fold with rumours that another four countries could follow suit. Reports also suggest that a splinter charity operating along similar lines as ShelterBox could be launched.
"International affiliates are self-determining bodies which set themselves up to raise funds and awareness in their country, with the support of ShelterBox headquarters," a spokesman for ShelterBox said.
"Each affiliate has a board which determines how they govern their activities and so far we have received the overwhelming support of those which account for 95% of our international affiliate funding.
"We continue to engage with those committed to the ShelterBox mission of doing the most for the greatest number of families and who ensure their actions protect the charity, its beneficiaries, services and reputation as required by our regulator the Charity Commission."
Some 50% of the charity's funds are raised abroad with Norway contributing 0.5%, Brazil 0.3% and France 4.2% of its total income last year. It is understood that France had its operations terminated by ShelterBox.
Last month a dossier of internal emails and reports, from an incomplete bundle, were leaked to the Western Morning News.
They suggested the sacking had sparked a backlash from some of the charity's affiliate organisations across the world, with demands that the board of trustees resign en masse and threats to freeze the charity's funds overseas.
The documents also suggest the reason for his sacking was so-called "related party transactions" to Mr Henderson's son John and his company.
The papers, which were sent to the WMN anonymously, show that respected businessman Sir John Banham, who later resigned from the board, raised serious concerns about the grounds for the sacking.
At the time ShelterBox said it was "deeply disappointed that misleading and partial information has been leaked to the press" saying it represented "a smear campaign against the board".