How MLMs take advantage of charitable intentions

We’ve seen a LOT of posts from MLM participants who are creating ‘Positive Packs’ to be given to people receiving hospital treatment or even spending time in a hospice. We thought we’d take a closer look at the numbers behind it all and what it means for the charity and the seller.

One Forever Living Business Owner was creating packs containing:

1 x Aloe Lips
1 x Aloe Vera Gelly
1 x Aloe Ever Shield

All donated in a branded Forever Living bag with a personalised gift tag attached.

She was selling these packs at a cost of £15 and it appears that 12 of them had been created and loaded into the boot of her car.

We looked into the costs and with her 35% FBO discount, these packs would have cost her £175.79 to buy. With the cost of the gift tags, we can assume that she was correct when she stated she wouldn’t make any financial profit from the £180 given to her. What she did gain was 1.128 Case Credits, Forever Living’s internal currency. A nice boost towards achieving the 4 Case Credits they aim to earn each month.

Forever Living charity costs

What is outrageous is that £180 has been diverted away from the charity and into Forever Living. People have given this money to support people in need and instead, their funds are going into a product-based pyramid scheme.

It took us a quick Google to find high street alternatives that meant 12 packs of similar items could be created for a total cost of £93.48. So packs could still be donated and the charity could have over £80 to spend as it saw fit. Or you know, give the whole £180 to the charity instead…

We found a post from another FBO who had also chosen to create packs and set up a Just Giving account for people to donate their money. Then when they realised that this meant the money went straight to the charity, they had to change it and ask for people to send money via PayPal, so the money went to her instead.


Donations intended for charity should go to charity, never towards a scheme where over 99% of the people who sign up in hope of earning some money, actually lose out.

Charitable people are awesome. Please help us to make sure the charity is the recipient instead of the MLM scheme.

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