'Financial concerns' raised at Wakefield charity Penny Appeal

The Penny Appeal at Cross Street Chambers.
The Penny Appeal at Cross Street Chambers.

"Potential financial concerns" at Wakefield's Penny Appeal are to be looked at by the regulator, The Charity Commission.

The Government department has announced that trustees of the charity, which provides aid for crisis-hit countries, had submitted a serious incident report.

Dragons' Den star James Caan sat next to Adeem Younis at Penny Appeal in 2017.

Dragons' Den star James Caan sat next to Adeem Younis at Penny Appeal in 2017.

The Commission said it is not currently conducting a formal statutory inquiry into the charity but added: "We are currently assessing this information and have contacted the trustees for further information. While this is ongoing we are unable to comment further.”

It comes after reports of a raid at the Cross Street offices were quashed by a spokesman for the charity.

He told the Express: "Penny Appeal is unable to comment at this stage as regards a self referral made to the Charity Commission.

"An internal investigation has yet to report to the board of trustees, and any comment at this stage will prejudice the inquiry.

"At this stage the board can confirm there is no significant risk to existing operations.

"We have been made aware that messages are circulating on social media stating that Penny Appeal have been the subject of regulatory action including a raid on our offices.

"The allegations are untrue. Penny Appeal continues to operate as usual and is not the subject of regulatory intervention nor has there been a raid at our offices."

Set up in 2009 in by Wakefield entrepreneur, Adeem Younis, it offers assistance for providing food, water and medical supplies to countries across the world.

Mr Younis, has has picked up multiple awards for his work, was also given the approval of former star of TV's Dragons' Den and entrepreneur, James Caan who was impressed by the operation when he visited in 2017.

With a multi-million-pound turnover and hundreds of staff, the charity bought Wakefield College's abandoned Thornes Park campus last year.