Cheryl Spain, CEO of the Gift Trust
Nobody knows the remarkable work being done in our communities like our local government community funders.
However, local government funders may find themselves jumping through bureaucratic hoops in an attempt to support initiatives that are not registered charities. Through its fundholding, Gift Collective is able to help fund even the smallest of projects and reach further into communities.
Gift Collective is a joint venture of national donor advised fund The Gift Trust and Open Collective NZ, which provides fundholding to kiwi initiatives with charitable purposes. It enables groups with a charitable mission to raise, manage, and spend money transparently. They don’t need to seek charitable status, or worry about incorporation, registration, or opening a new bank account.
For funders, the Gift Collective takes the risk out of granting to less formal groups through an expert vetting process, automatic reporting, and transparent budget tracking. They support projects to follow best practice for managing their funds, and as an established charitable trust they can meet fundholder compliance requirements.
One group enabled by Gift Collective is Happen Films. This awesome little production company believes that the solutions to our problems are already in the community and that, by telling their stories, they can spread inspiration and information on how others are changing the world.
One keen funder learned about their work and sought out Gift Collective to smooth the way. Matthew Monahan from the Namaste Foundation says; “The Namaste Foundation wants to support organisations making a difference on the ground, regardless of whether they are registered charities.
“Happen Films is making documentaries about social and environmental issues in New Zealand, and Gift Collective allowed us to support them without any red tape or administrative hassle, whilst still ensuring their charitable credentials. We have supported their film about the Common Unity food project in Lower Hutt.”
Another group using the Gift Collective service is Aotearoa Refugee and Migrants Services, a social enterprise that has been working with the CALD (Culturally and Linguistically Diverse) and Ethnic Communities (migrants and refugees) for the past five years. They offer cultural bridging facilitation support, family resettlement support, and business start-up support with a team from the cultures of the people involved who speak their own language. Chiara LaRotonda from the Wellington Community Trust says; “The Wellington Community Trust suggested that ARMSS use Gift Collective as a fundholder because it allowed us to fund much more quickly than if we had to wait for formal charitable status.
“We were grateful for the extra layer of due diligence around charitable purpose that the Gift Collective provided, and we knew their processes would support ARMSS to get on with doing what they do best in their community.”
Whakapono – Believe is an art exhibition held in Whanganui to showcase the work of people on the recovery journey.
Its aim is to reduce the stigma associated with those recovering from drug addiction by giving the public an opportunity to see the artists as more than the drugs they took to survive the challenges they have faced in the past. The Whanganui Community Foundation wanted to fund the exhibition, but encountered the difficulties of offering funding to an unregistered group. Gift Collective made a grant possible.
Stephen Brandon from the Whanganui Community Foundation says; “When we were approached by Whakapono – Believe for a grant to put on an art exhibition by artists who have survived drug addiction to share their experiences and lower the stigma, we liked their objectives and passion.
“However, we could not fund them as an unincorporated group, as we traditionally only fund through Charitable Trusts, Incorporated Societies, and Marae. Gift Collective were the missing piece in the puzzle. We were able to grant through them as a registered charity; the exhibition organisers now have simplified, robust finance processes and financial reporting. “We now recommend Gift Collective as an option for any unincorporated group seeking funding from the Foundation.”
Offering its service throughout the country, the Gift Collective is able to work with your local government body to fund even the hard to reach corners of your community.
Please visit our website for more information: www.opencollective.nz/giftcollective.