Fundraising Requiring Civcom Presence


#21

Two people should count it anyway, regardless.


#22

The amount of money involved in most bag packs it’s a team effort to count it all.

I think it depends on the unit and the situation, at my old unit staff and Civ Com counted the money together and then I as the OC used to take it and put it in the safe until their was a chance for the Civ Com to take take it to the bank. (We used to bag pack on a Christmas Eve). Now by the strict rules the Civ Com should have taken it, buts what’s more secure the Treasurers Study or the OC’s Safe?


#23

IME we organised a bag pack - Cadets and ALL Civcom turned up, but NO uniforms so we cancelled because the Civcom has never been authorised to supervise Cadets in any situation.

And it is Civcom who should arrange these things as they are the fundraisers - that bit came in 2016.
And as for counting the money, maybe it is a good thing to share the job, for verification purposed but some posts make it sound as if they dont Trust the Trustees, who are after all responsible by statute whereas a Uniform is not, and the cash handling certificate is something within the Treasurer’s remit, but if the Civcom pull together you dont need uniform help in counting or securing money, beside which Civcom do not, and cannot have, access to Sqn premises to suit themselves.

In a recent case, someone thieving charity money has won a three year holiday - the judge saying that donors had an expectation that charity money is not stolen - and I think that should include all instances of misappropriation.


#24

has this question been answered? either by your CWC or other?

it would seem lots are completing a “best practise” approach but interested to know if the questioned has an answer and if the situation has been resolved


#25

No. It’s on going.


#26

The CivCom can authorise sqn staff to handle monies by issuing a cash handling certificate.
Indeed, every squadron should have one to cover receipt of cash for canteen, or as payment for courses etc.

I see no reason why the CivCom couldn’t equally authorise via that certificate the handling of money collected via fundraising.


#27

As the CWC is responsible for fundraising what is the problem with making them get off their backsides. People seem to want to treat them like relatives people avoid, as opposed to an integral and necessary part of an Air Cadet sqn.


#28

I think the civcom should get out there and fundraise on their own. No need for uniform presence at all!


#29

Because they aren’t able to and if they don’t who else will?


#30

In theory, a great idea.

In practice, there’s a good chance that they’ll say no, quit and then leave you with no civcom and in a deep hole.


#31

Why a theory? It’s what should be happen.
You must have had some very odd times with CWCs, if the suggestion is that the CO says “that’s your thing to do” and the CWC do a smart one to the right.
I all my years of knowing of and working with CWCs, apart from the odd disruptive individual, they have all taken the fundraising seriously as their thing, with others chipping in ideas and getting a few quid out of people they know.


#32

You’re lucky then.

Our experience with Civcoms generally consists of not having one, desperately begging for volunteers as we’re not allowed to run the squadron without one and then having a load of well-meaning people doing the minimum, because no one else will.

[caveat - we do now have a whole new Civcom, so hopefully things will be different this time]


#33

Fully agree with that observation.
Our CivCom would write to local supermarkets get a date and then tell us the date and crack on and do
It.
When it came to fundraising nights the CivComm were there but were never involved organising it was always the staff.

When we were finished the OC was to bank it all
And then tell them what it was we raised luckily we have always had trust worthy OCs who didn’t run with the money


#34

I find myself wondering if all these negative CivComm experiences originate from there not being more info on being a CivComm member. I don’t mean ACPs, I mean actual training info and explanation.

I’m not naive - I do understand that some of this takes place already, and that not all parents are doers.

But when ever I have explained the need for support which ultimately benefits their own children, something positive usually happens.

Uniformed experience is clearly variable, but I just think that if the organisation was far less woolly in defining the role of CivCom members and more publicly acknowledging the trusteeship role - and actually promoting it rather than suppressing it - then the calibre of Civcomm members might universally rise across the board.


#35

Just to illustrate my previous point and perhaps highlight the delicate balance between legal responsibility and ACO control which could be far better handled by the organisation …

From the latest Charity Commission Newsletter …

Quality and transparency has fallen in charity accounts

Our recent review of charity accounts has found that just over half of charities are meeting the public benefit reporting requirements.

Just 70% of trustees’ annual reports and accounts in the public reporting review met the basic benchmark of user requirements.

The quality benchmark was based on recent research into trust in charities which found that ‘ensuring a reasonable proportion of donations make it to the end cause’ and ‘making a positive difference to the cause they work for’ were the most important factors for public trust and confidence in charities.

The main reasons why charities’ accounts submissions did not meet the basic benchmark were:

  • failure to evidence that accounts had been subject to independent scrutiny by an auditor or independent examiner, as required by law
  • not providing meaningful information about their charity’s purposes or the activities carried out to achieve those purposes

Also, just 52% of trustees’ annual reports in the public benefit reporting review met the public benefit reporting requirements.

Trustees are falling short on the requirements to explain activities carried out by the charity to further its purposes for the public benefit, and to provide a public benefit statement.

It is important that you explain the activities your charity undertakes and the impact you have. We want to see charity thrive, so charities must be clearer about who they help and what difference they are making.


#36

I’m not quite sure what training you could give in terms of fundraising as it mostly requires getting on and doing it.
In my experience “dances/socials”, quiz nights, stalls at local events with few ‘games’ along with ‘begging’ letters, have been the mainstay of fundraising work. Of course the lazy thing is subs.
One of the ‘favourite’ stall games at our church has been toy tombolas and the age group we have, may well have all manner of toys that parents are keen to get rid of. One of the ones that seems to make a mint at any church event, is the cake stall, which also does drinks. A combination of homemade / shop bought cakes and savouries, take on average £200 in three hours. One of the church wardens said people are willing to pay £4-£5 in a coffee shop for a coffee and “cake”, so the £2 we charge is nothing, which is bolstered as people will often buy whole/individual cakes and savouries to take home.

I wonder if some of those with a negative regard of CWCs go in with demands for thousands of pounds, which can take 2 or 3 years to amass, given large donation requests normally need a detailed submission, definite end point and fit within the ‘givers’ spec for donations.


#37

True … but one might start by declaring (and respecting ?) the true nature of positive and active CivComship.

So often it is quoted as a critical part of the organisation but then suppressed. My own experience is that squadrons who follow the spirit of the law and have a good relationship, can afford to sit back a bit and let the CivCom fly. Yes there are some variants, but not letting the cadets down is a massive incentive.


#38

I don’t know if you are right or wrong with this trustee stuff but one thing which concerns me is the type of individual you are looking to get.

In our sqn/ Wing we advertise all the time for staff; uniformed, CIs and CiVComm members. All we ask for from a CivComm Member is someone to give a few hours every few Months to have a meeting and help support the sqn. We get no one applying for CivComm, so we have to ask parents, friends, basically anyone to help out. we all know in today’s society no one really has time to help out unless they are dedicated to a cause. If you are saying if we change our approach from being a bogstandard civcomm sqn supporter to some all powerful charitable trustee thing and we will get more people and as you put it a better calibre then NO THANKS!
If you don’t want to help when your just Joe Bloggs but now you have some fancy title of trustee Joe Bloggs you want to help out, then that calibre is the self obsessed, Look at me, look how great i am Wahoo sqns can do without. I think you will find they are the type who will come along and start trying to dictate how things are ran, what is to be done and then we end up where we have problems with people over reaching and forgetting what they are there for… the Cadets not
Their own egos!


#39

Yes that would be a fair point and concern.

However, the real point behind this is not really me or any opinion I may or may not have. It is a reflection of the situation the ACO has created by seeking the benefits of charitable funding and yet refusing to openly acknowledge the responsibilities and conduct coming with that as de facto to people throughout the organisation. If the organisation were to be openly honest and face the fact (as it will increasingly have to with changes in charitable regulation on the way) that there is this tier in the organisation who are not just ‘hanging on the sidelines as a problem’, but who are willing to support their local squadron by putting their name, not to a volunteer agreement but to a legally binding and defined role that has been created by ATC-HQ (no one else), then the haze of misunderstanding will persist.

That haze is beneficial to ATC-HQ because were it to permanently clear, CAC would have hundreds, maybe thousands of uniformed volunteers questioning whether they really want to be a part of that structure. Your own scenarios highlight perfectly this area at a practical level.

It is not about power-hungry trustees - if it is then I agree, you have the wrong people. But it is about understanding and respect between pieces of a jigsaw. People support squadrons (or not) in different ways to build a team. A parent who is an accountant may feel more comfortable offering to be treasurer. Another may feel they can offer something else. It all comes together and the cadets do benefit. It is written into the rules by the ACO that charitable funding is present and that means there are legal precedents that have to be respected - not worshipped.

You must have trustees in your squadron. They are required for a correct operation of the squadron finances. The point being that the trustees commit themselves to being responsible for the physical and financial assets of the squadron that the CO commands. Situations where a squadron is limping along and being patched up by an interim arrangement cannot go on forever.

The biggest problem is undoubtedly the ACO talking the part but not openly admitting this to be the fundamental picture. Regrettably this removes the opportunity for discussion and planning (save for this forum). That perpetuates any friction and frustrations as the ACO wants to (understandably) control all factions of its operation, but cannot because of the decisions it has made to go down this route in the past. In law, the only people who can make financial decisions over the assets of the squadron are the trustees. There is no chain of command that has any right to over-ride that basic principle, yet keeping it hazy means avoiding such a difficult area for a uniformed organisation. Admittedly, it does also risk the over-inflated egos that you suggest. Regular readers here will know I am no fan of the latest ACP-11, but it is a mess. (If you have the inclination, try reading it through and see how many pages pass by before you are totally muddled at the interchangeable terms and contradictions).

My suggestion, however, was that based on the likelihood that most parents will want the best for their kids and some may even want to help support the efforts of others in achieving that, promoting a more positive image of CIvComs and trustees might in turn see a greater commitment and understanding in supporting the squadron. Is it any wonder that the typical profile of a CivCom member is being 1,000 years old and sitting in dark corners when that is how the role is seen? It is perhaps a little self-fulfilling?

Importantly trustees are also there to protect the squadron too - their sole purpose is to make decisions in the interest of the squadron’s cadets … not the ACO or Wing … your squadron. This is sometimes seen as wanting to control things, but the trustees are only responsive to the needs of the squadron and its CO. Once that is understood, then a good CO will use that to the squadron’s advantage.

One answer would of course be to move back to an MOD fully-funded corps such as the Army cadets without any charitable funding. But that isn’t going to happen soon.


#40

Can you all stop ruining my topic please.