donations

pound notes

Payroll Giving – a great way to donate to charity

Payroll Giving is a scheme run through HMRC which allows employees to make simple, tax-effective donations to any UK charity or good cause. Employees can give to any organisation recognised as charitable by HMRC.

Employers who pay employees or pensioners through PAYE must set up a Payroll Giving scheme through a Payroll Giving agency, using the list of organisations approved and monitored by HMRC to set up a scheme.

Deductions are made each time payroll is run by the employer, with the donation taken from employees’ pay before tax but after National Insurance. The donations are then sent to the Payroll Giving agency who pass them on to the chosen charities. Some agencies charge an administration fee, although the employee can opt for the fee to be deducted from their donation.

Advantages of making a donation to charity through payroll giving are:

  • charities get more of your donation because giving comes out of your salary after National Insurance, but before tax. This means that you get tax relief on your donation which can be passed onto your charity.
  • charities can rely upon regular donations.
  • reduces administration for charities because donations are made before tax, charities don’t have to claim gift aid.

As an employer, most corporate organisations realise how important Corporate Social Responsibility is, both for their reputation as a responsible business and a good employer. By having a payroll giving scheme, businesses can offer a genuine employee benefit and boost their CSR at the same time. Choosing a charity for the whole organisation to support each year can also be a great employee engagement activity, with additional fundraising events from time to time building team spirit and pride in the organisation.

And finally the good news from HMRC is that employers can deduct any costs of running the scheme from their business profits before tax.

Details on the HMRC website

 

 

cyber attack

Free Cyber Security Webinar 18/7/19

Three quarters of charities haven’t invested in cyber security, despite 22% of UK charities of all sizes being targeted by attackers last year. 44% of charities aren’t protecting themselves from cyber attacks because they simply don’t see themselves at risk, leaving them vulnerable to costly security breaches (the average cost of a cyber breach to a charity in 2019 is nearly 10k).

But cost shouldn’t be your only concern — funders, supporters and beneficiaries are increasingly asking for charities to show how they are protecting data and taking cyber security seriously. It is increasingly a priority issue for organisations. 75% of charities (vs. 53% in 2018) now rate it as a high priority. Among these organisations, the most common attacks are:

  • phishing emails (80% of businesses and 81% of charities experiencing breaches or attacks)
  • others impersonating their organisation online (28% and 20%)
  • viruses or other malware, including ransomware (27% and 18%)

Many charities are taking action on cyber security as a result of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) but could take a more proactive approach around staff engagement and training:

  • 49% of charities, directors or trustees are only updated once a year or less on cyber security (if at all)
  • Only 29% the staff dealing with charity cyber security have the right skills and knowledge

In a survey, just over half of charities identified cyber security as a key priority, but almost three quarters said they hadn’t invested in cyber security.

A great starting point is to have a look at the Government’s 10 Steps to Cyber Security and for your board of trustees to recognise their responsibilities in protecting information and not merely as in IT issue.

Learn the common cyber attacks and how to spot the danger signs by taking part in the free National Cyber Security Centre webinar https://charitydigital.org.uk/ncsc-cyber-essentials/ on Thursday 18th July.

 

 

 

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The Big Give Christmas Challenge

One donation, twice the impact.

The Big Give runs the UK’s biggest match funding campaign, The Christmas Challenge. For 7 days, it offers supporters of registered UK charities the opportunity to have their donation doubled.

How does the Christmas Challenge Work?

The Christmas Challenge is a match funding campaign where donations to participating UK charities are doubled. The match funds come from two sources – charities secure some of these (pledges) over the summer. These funds are then boosted by funds from a Big Give Champion who contributes to the match fund. This collective pot is used to double donations from online supporters when the campaign is live.

After the campaign in 2018, charities reported:

  • 94% attracted new donors
  • 63% said that current supporters gave more
  • 89% increased their confidence in online fundraising
  • 73% reported an increase in profile having taken part in the campaign
  • 50% said they received a pledge promise from a new supporter

Who is eligible to take part?

You must be a UK-registered charity with a Charity Commission number or tax-exempt status.

Submit Stage 1 Application by 19th July 2019

Complete Stage 2 (Collect your Pledges) by 30th August 2019

Check your eligibility and click here to get started

 

 

lottery

Local Authority Lotteries Generating Local Funding

Community lotteries are becoming increasingly popular. The idea is to make a positive difference to communities, passing as much money as possible on to good causes while allowing people to choose where their money goes. For local authorities a lottery can be used to raise funds to cover expenditure on local community projects, arts centres or parks and leisure facilities. 

Historically, local authorities have awarded grants to support voluntary organisations, but funding has been reduced following central government cuts and the lottery provides the means for community groups to help themselves fundraise using their page on the community lottery website.

Locally, there are currently 4 community lotteries in operation: Guildford, Surrey Heath and Rushmoor are run by the lottery operator Gatherwell, and an independently operated lottery in Tandridge. The success of others around the UK suggests that this is an idea that will be adopted by more local authorities trying to bridge the gap between services and funding.

How does it work?

For groups in Surrey Heath, once a voluntary organisation has met the criteria and been accepted for the lottery, they are given their own Surrey Heath Lottery page which can be shared with their supporters and used to generate ticket sales. Groups keep 50% of all ticket sales made on their page and the funds are paid to them directly each month.

The draw for the Surrey Heath Lottery takes place every Saturday night with results posted on the lottery website, Facebook and Twitter. 60% of ticket sales go to good causes – 50% to the voluntary group’s own cause and 10% to a fund supporting all good causes in Surrey Heath.

There is no fee but your organisation must provide services benefiting residents, have a constitution and bank account and have no restriction on membership. See the terms and conditions here.

Interesting to note that by comparison the National Lottery contributes 28% of ticket sales to good causes while the Health Lottery contributes just 20%

 

 

free

Small Charity Week 2019 – Share Your Skills

We know you’re dedicated, thrifty, resourceful and excellent at networking.

The strength of being a small charity is the trust in our cause from the local community. Being established, embedded and connected allows us to offer person-centred, quick decisions and long-term solutions.

The disadvantages of being small are the lack of human resource, time and budget for running costs.

This Small Charity Week I wondered how I could help you with those challenges and had a lightbulb moment as I looked at all the bookmarked pages on my internet browser.

We use free versions of apps and tools to save time, read blogs and join webinars to access free training and network with other voluntary groups and charities for free expertise and resources.

Here’s a run down of our favourite, free (or reduced cost) things:

Social Media is time consuming but essential to raise your profile. We use Hootsuite to set up our posts for the week ahead – the free version allows scheduling of 3 different channels. Pocket to save articles and links that would make interesting content. Survey Monkey to find out what our beneficiaries are thinking. Mailchimp to create and send multiple emails. Pixabay and Unsplash for amazing free images to make our social media visually engaging. We create videos using Lumen5 and Mojo and use Canva for graphic-design of correctly sized media images

Technology and software are expensive, but for UK registered charities the Tech Trust offer discounted technology from world leading providers. We use Sage Accounting, Salesforce CRM and Microsoft Office and One Drive through this program. Website creation and maintenance used to be a dark art, but WordPress (or other website content management systems) make it easy to create and maintain simple free sites.

Training is important and free training not easy to find. VSNS offer volunteer management, trustee, social media and fundraising training. Surrey Skills Academy run courses throughout Surrey both classroom and online. NCVO Knowhow have templates, how-to guides and e-learning on hundreds of topics, some are member only access but small charity membership is free. Media Trust has a resource hub and offer free training – I’ve attended 2 amazing conferences in London in the past year. Webinars are also a great way to learn – you’ll find details in many of the fundraising blogs below.

and finally … Fundraising

We publish up to date funding information from local and national funders. I read lots of fundraising blogs (White Fuse, Charity Choice, UK Fundraising, Not for Profit Tech for Good ….), NCVO have a grant finder called Funding Central, Amazon and Facebook now have ways for users to donate (with Instagram likely to follow soon) and there are a variety of donation pages at little or no cost.

Currently, there are over 136,000 registered small and micro charities in the UK, making up 82% of the charity total. More than half of them (58%) have an income under £10,000. There are also estimated to be between 600,000 to 900,000 unincorporated organisations that are too small to register.

Our networking is second to none – so this Small Charity Week pay your knowledge forward and share your skills with other small charities. Make all our lives easier and our causes mightier!

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GASDS Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme

If your charity has events where you accept donations you should be reclaiming gift aid from HMRC using the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme GASDS. The maximum donation for which you can make a claim on the GASDS scheme is currently £20 but due to rise to £30 in April 2019, and it’s important to note that donations are not a membership or ticket fee

The rules are straightforward, you must already be registered for gift aid and have made a gift aid claim. Your charity can then claim a payment equivalent to gift aid on cash donations of £20 or less, without the need for the donor to complete any paperwork, or for the donor to be a taxpayer. GASDS Claims are made alongside Gift Aid claims using the Charities Online template provided by HMRC. Note that an individual donation can only be eligible for one type of claim. It is either eligible under Gift Aid or the GASDS but not both.

HMRC states that to make a GASDS claim you must have claimed Gift Aid in the same tax year as you want to claim GASDS and without incurring a penalty in the last two years. You must also have claimed Gift Aid in at least two of the last four tax years (without a two-year gap between claims). Your GASDS claim can’t be more than 10 times your Gift Aid claim – so if you receive £100 in Gift Aid donations in a tax year, you can only claim on up to £1,000 of small donations under GASDS for that year (when you actually submit the claim is irrelevant). The maximum GASDS claim is £2000.

I found a really good example on the stewardship.org.uk website:

A charity receives £8,800 in a tax year in eligible cash donations with documented Gift Aid donations of £800 and small cash donations of £8,000. The charity can make claims on all of its donations; £800 under the Gift Aid scheme, and £8,000 under the GASDS because the matching principle allows for a GASDS claim of ten times that of the Gift Aid claim for donations received in the same tax year. The charity will receive £2000 in GASDS (25% of £8000) which is currently the maximum and £200 (25% of £800) in Gift Aid from their £8800 donations.

Good to note that you should inform your supporters that they need to commit to Gift Aid to allow you to make a GASDS claim.

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