RSPCA tops the media ratings with abandoned cats appeal

The RSPCA claims the top spot in this month’s NGO Watch for the second consecutive month, with the Red Cross and Cancer Research UK also staying in the top three.

The RSPCA launched an appeal for more homes for stray cats in the South East. A report from the charity ind­icated that the number of cats abandoned in the South East had increased by 18 per cent. This was picked up by outlets including BBC News.

Similarly, the Red Cross gained positive media coverage after criticising the international community for not trying harder to find missing people around the world. Its report, released on the International Day of the Disappeared, highlighted that the number of missing people in Iraq now stands at 375,000.

Cancer Research UK gained a high level of coverage surrounding the major government initiative to re-label cigarette packets with shocking images of the side effects of smoking. The Telegraph reported that the images are to be placed on all cigarette boxes by 2009.

Amnesty International shot up the table to fifth place after it changed its position on abortion, saying it is acc­eptable in cases of rape, sexual assault and incest. The new position outraged Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland, who quit the organisation in protest.

Meanwhile, Oxfam was subject to criticism from smaller NGOs after it was accused of monopolising fundraising opportunities at the London Marathon. The Guardian said smaller charities have to turn people away who want to run for them.

Commenting on the deb­ate surrounding its 25 guaranteed spaces, Oxfam stated that it was ‘very happy to have those spaces’ but it would not get involved ‘in debates between smaller and bigger charities’.


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