“Real Housewives of Atlanta” star Cynthia Bailey is being accused of scamming moms straight out of her Bailey Modelling Agency School of Fashion in Atlanta, where the company accepts money for services they never seem to fulfill.
According to one mom, Dorothy Lewis:
“Cynthia Bailey is on the Atlanta Housewives and my daughter talks about her and my granddaughter talks about her. Lewis says her granddaughter, who is seven and named Paris Davis, is “bubbly, loves playing, singing, dancing and likes modeling, very talkative.”
Anytime Paris takes a picture, “she does her own poses,” Lewis said. So after seeing Bailey on Real Housewives of Atlanta, Lewis looked up her agency and found a photo contest for babies and kids.
“The only thing I had to do was submit her photo and then I had to submit an entry fee on the website,” Lewis explained.
Lewis paid $20 to enter Paris into the “big kid” category for the month of January.
The Bailey Agency promise? Each month a winner will be chosen in each category with the winners featured on TheBaileyAgencySchoolofFashion.com. “To me it’s like playing the lottery. Your chances are slim but what if? That would be exciting if you win,” Lewis said.
The problem? The Bailey Agency hasn’t updated the winners since October 2013, but the site has continued to collect money.
“It’s just not right to be advertising that you’re going to do one thing and take people’s money from around the country and you’re not following through on what you’re saying,” Lewis said.
On top of that, until CBS46 started asking questions, the website stated “a portion of the proceeds … will be donated to the Atlanta Diaper Relief.” The nonprofit folded six months ago.
CBS46 reached out to Bailey and she responded with: “We didn’t even realize it folded until we reached out to her to let her know we were going to be changing it over.”
The agency now gives a portion of the money to Kile’s World, the foundation started by Tameka Foster Raymond in honor of her late son.
Reports also claim the agency collected over 79 entries and $1,580, while the winners weren’t being updated. But the contest is supposed to pay out $450 a month in prizes, in this case, losing money.
“Do you have anything to say to those moms or those grandmothers who were concerned their money wasn’t being used for what it was intended?” reporter Jennifer Mayerle asked.
“First of all I think that’s a very negative approach to the whole situation, that’s not like their $20 wasn’t being used for what it was intended for. It’s just a matter of us being in transition on our side and we were just behind on the website. But now it’s updated,” Bailey said.
Bailey promises to issue a refund to the participants in the contest and also released the following statement:
“The program is not revenue driven. The Bailey Babies Contest was created in the spirit of giving moms with young babies a platform to give their children exposure. This was a fun & inexpensive way to involve young babies in the school since they are obviously too young to participate in any of the other school programs that are offered.
The program was also developed for the purpose of extending our brand out to people outside of the Atlanta area that support and want to be a part of The Bailey Agency. I apologize for any negligence on my part as far as my staff not keeping the website properly updated. I hope after receiving all the correct and updated information from me personally, you can appreciate the sincerity of my intentions. I appreciate you for bringing this important matter to my attention. I can assure The Bailey Babies mommies that this will not be an issue going forward. Thank you for providing the opportunity to address this matter.”