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Charities Board Welcome and The Rules

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Charities
40 replies 96.9K views
24

Replies

  • domgrimadomgrima Forumite
    8 posts
    I'm something of a newbie, but have seen references to the MSE charity fund. Having got a referral for an A&L account, from someone on this forum who kindly offered to pay back most of their end of the deal, I would like to pay some of it towards the MSE charity fund. How can I do so?
  • novellinovelli Forumite
    638 posts
    Quote And while being a registered charity does not completely rule out the possibility of abuse, the necessity for having

    a) a constitution or governing document which sets out the charity's aims, and

    b) a group of trustees who must always act in accordance with those aims and the best interests of the charity

    does make it harder to go 'off the rails'. As long as the trustees do their job, that is!
    unquote

    Tho we are not a registered charity we have been in existance for 10 years and have our own website, as well as all of the above. Yet my post requesting people to ocntact us if they were intersted in doing a parachute jump was removed??
    Its always the big charities who get the most support, when us smaller organisations who have no paid staff (unlike most charities), i think you should reconsider listing voluntary organisations that do have constitutions and comiittees etc, as they are always the ones that need the most help and have the unpaid workers!! Under the freedom of information act you can request information from us about any of our work including accounts etc, so you can also easily check out voluntary orgs, but once again we are discriminated against!!
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    Hi there, as per my pm I have referred this across to the team and will defer to their decision. However Martin was quite clear that this is the charity board and specifically said:

    1. Any links must benefit a UK registered charity. The details of the charity number and link to the website must be given.

    I understand the politics of this having an association with a voluntary group that cannot obtain charitiable status, but the rules seem clear to me.

    Also, the original post asked for direct contact by pm, which is actually against site rules.

    We can only wait for a moderator decision on this as I can't over rule Martin's regulations as I am only a BG.

    Soo
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
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  • novellinovelli Forumite
    638 posts
    Ok, i await their response, but do hope that this registered charity situation can be looked at. If a voluntary org are able to provide a constitution, committee details and any other identifying details, including website etc, they ought to be allowed to post requests, as I say its always us that have to really work so hard for no wages to get funding, whereas the bigger guys get the recognition and funding!!
    You do not have to be a registered charity to apply for all the lottery funding and most other funds, as long as you are not for profit, have a constitution and a committee, you are treated no differently to a registered charity, which is how it should be. We have nothing to benefit from becoming registered, but there are cost implications, not to mention time implications, our time is better spent helping the thousands of families we work with, rather than reams of paperwork.

    i am happy not to request PMs, but to put website details in the posting.
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    novelli, I understand why Martin said what he said as if voluntary groups are allowed then someone has to decide which should be posted and which can't, which makes far too much work for this board.

    Your group may be fine, but what if someone else wants to post a quasi Political group if we allow one we allow them all , what about extremist groups, who will monitor what is allowed and what is not? At least setting a rule where they must be a charity makes it easier for me as a BG to say yes or no, I don't have to make any decisions based on my own personal feelings which would of course be exceeding my remit anyway as I am supposed to merely keep the board tidy and on thread.

    Can I make another suggestion? Repost over in the MSE arms and open up it up for a full discussion.

    Soo
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
    New to Forum? Guide
  • Former_MSE_AndreaFormer_MSE_Andrea Former MSE
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    Hi

    soolin's said it for us really. Like you novelli it's simply a matter of funds. The site doesn't have the resources to pay for a team that could monitor the increased number of threads and we'd never ask the BGs to take on such a task so Martin had to draw a line.

    Andrea :)
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  • MSE_MartinMSE_Martin MoneySaving Expert
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    Novelli. Your point is well made. However this board was an attempt to help the many people who want to help out charities. While voluntary organisations do a lot of good - there is no easy and effective way to police it and it could result in people spamming.

    With a charity, the charities commission does the basic policing. Im really sorry not to be able to help, but please remember this boards only just been born.... in the past even charities couldn't post

    martin
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
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  • novellinovelli Forumite
    638 posts
    I do understand what you r saying, but once again its those who need it the most that lose out!!

    If anyone thinks for one second that ALL registered charities play by the rules and are never ever dodgy, then u are very sadley mistaken.
  • novelli wrote:
    I do understand what you r saying, but once again its those who need it the most that lose out!!

    If anyone thinks for one second that ALL registered charities play by the rules and are never ever dodgy, then u are very sadley mistaken.

    I would also point out that this is a money saving forum. This board is a concession Martin makes to help charity where we can. This site already gives a substantial amount of money to our chosen charities and we are trying to help charity where we can. Certainly your point is well made, but there is a limit on what we can do and how we can do it. We could simply remove this board altogether, but that isn't what we want to do.

    The system is by no means perfect, but we do what we can to help to the best of our ability and resources. We are certainly not saying that this board cannot evolve, but at present this is the best gesture we can make

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  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
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    novelli wrote:
    I do understand what you r saying, but once again its those who need it the most that lose out!!
    I would recommend your committee doing a 'cost/benefit' analysis of registering as a charity. Yes, there are cost implications, BUT you are wrong when you say there is no benefit. The main one is that any UK taxpayers who give money to your organisation could Gift Aid their donations. That could well cover those costs - especially when the Gift Aid toolkit makes it so easy to get that message across, even on things like sponsor forms! I quote:

    "Use Gift Aid and you can make your donation worth more. For every pound you give to us, we get an extra 28 pence from HMRC. So just tick here. It’s that simple."
    novelli wrote:
    If anyone thinks for one second that ALL registered charities play by the rules and are never ever dodgy, then u are very sadley mistaken.
    No-one's ever said that. The difference is that there is one single body who concerns themselves with the regulation of charities - the Charity Commission - and no such body for NFPs of other kinds. I have no doubt that your NFP is well governed and that everything is totally above board. But if in the future someone had concerns about the actions of your committee, who could they take those concerns to?

    Please don't imagine either that all charities do have paid staff and that all NFPs operate without any paid staff. In some cases it is more cost-effective to pay someone to do a particular job than to rely on volunteers, and there is nothing wrong with that. 'Horses for courses', as they say. The small charity I work for couldn't function without volunteers who give a great deal of time (and money, helpfully supplemented by Gift Aid!) but it wouldn't function well with a small paid staff.

    I hope no-one thinks I'm trying to argue with you about this: I know where you're coming from because I've helped run an NFP which struggled to raise funds and was excluded from some grant awards because we weren't a charity. We had our reasons for staying NFP. And your cost/benefit analysis may conclude that now is not the time to go down that path. But perhaps the decision should be reviewed regularly, because it's not an open-and-shut forever-and-a-day kind of decision.

    There are some stickies on the Small Biz & Charity Organisers board which may help your thinking!

    Good luck!
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