Charity grant recipient asks, "Where's the money?" - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Charity grant recipient asks, "Where's the money?"

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DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. -

A kidney transplant patient says it was at a star-studded fundraising event that he was awarded a grant to help him with mounting medical bills. But, behind the glitz and glamour are serious questions about how this charity manages its money.

For a few years now, "The Not Alone Foundation" has held an annual fundraiser. It's own Web site say that with the money raised it provides "financial assistance" for people with chronic kidney disease.

CEO Mark Dodd said this at the 2013 event, "We're the only foundation, or well one of the very few, that raises money to help individuals get on the kidney transplant list."

In the audience that night was Cliff Trowers.

"It was a nice gala. Everybody was dressed up. We had a few celebrities out there. People in corporate America was being honored," a recent kidney transplant recipient.

That was March 2013 and Mr. Trowers said he received a $1,000 grant. But did he get the money that night?

"No, I did not."

A couple of weeks later?

"No, I did not," he said.

It's now the end of August 2014. A year and a half after Cliff Trowers was awarded what he calls a much-needed grant. But he says he's still asking, "Where's the money?"

He says he has texts exchanged with CEO Dodd to prove it.

"When will I get my money?"

Another text reminded Mr. Dodd, "I haven't heard from you in weeks."

But, finally, after a barrage of back and forth messages, a breakthrough.

"I got $500 after your investigative report during the early part of the summer," said Cliff Trowers.

The FOX 5 I-Team looked in June at "The Not Alone Foundation's" big claims. We found it is not a "partner of Georgia Transplant Foundation" as advertised. The well-respected, fundraising organization said its not affiliated.

The foundation CEO, Mark Dodd, admitted to us that "The Not Alone Foundation" is not registered as a charity with the Secretary of State's office or the IRS.

He told us last June, "It's a lot of paperwork."

In a recent email, Dodd wrote that he's in the process of "restructuring and becoming compliant with both state and federal laws that were an issue."

But despite the questions, Cliff Trowers was still hopeful. In addition to the $500, he finally received another $250 check.

"I got it in the mail. I put it into my account. A few days later, it bounced."

Mark Dodd said he apologizes. He made a mistake and should have given Mr. Trowers the grant money immediately. Dodd says he's going to make sure he gets it soon.

Cliff is not letting this get him down. He has a new kidney and a new take on life. He and his family have catching up to do.

"I get to wake up Saturday mornings and cook breakfast for my daughter, watch cartoons, simple things you take for granted."

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