Advice for treasurers
Counting, banking and reporting the money raised is a vitally important part of your Christian Aid Week activities! Here are is our advice on everything treasurers need to know.
Please also read our coronavirus guidance to help you stay safe handling donations this Christian Aid Week.
Treasurers' advice for Christian Aid Week
Thank you for giving your time so generously to help us count, bank and report on the money raised during your Christian Aid Week activities.
We are immensely grateful for the time you give each year for Christian Aid. Below is our guidance and advice to support your vital work. For Christian Aid Week 2021, please also follow the advice on cash handling to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission.
Before Christian Aid Week Group treasurers should:
- Contact representatives from each church in your Christian Aid group. Explain how to handle donations and deal with Gift Aid declarations and let them know they will need to count how many envelopes they collect, regardless of whether or not they are empty.
- Provide church reps with relevant paying-in stationery and return envelopes. We recommend writing your group or church name and reference number on stationery and envelopes before passing them on.
- If your group has a Christian Aid bank account, check that it has two up-to-date signatories and enter the account balance on 31 March on Form A.
If you are holding a house-to-house collection all treasurers should, find someone willing to be an independent verifier to check collections, expense claims and payments to Christian Aid against Form A. Details of who this can be are below.
Immediately after Christian Aid Week treasurers should:
- Remind everyone responsible for handling money to pay it in promptly. As soon as you have received all completed Gift Aid declarations and sponsorship forms, send these in the Freepost plastic bag provided by 6 July each year.
- Foreign currency should be placed inside the Freepost plastic bag with your Gift Aid slips. Please be sure to store the Gift Aid slips securely (for example in a locked filing cabinet) as they contain donors’ personal details. Ensure you include your group name and reference number on the front of the Freepost plastic bag.
- You can post cheques and CAFS direct to Christian Aid in the white freepost envelope which has a tick box if you need the contents acknowledged. When you are filling in the money returns form (Form A) please remember to tell us how the funds were raised for any CAF or charity vouchers received and include them in the total.
- If you held a house-to-house collection, keep a record of the collectors’ names and addresses, with the streets they collected on and the amount raised, so that we can demonstrate that we have met our legal requirements. Please inform your collectors that you are doing this and store the list somewhere safe for seven years. On the money returns form (Form A), please record the total number of collectors involved and the number of envelopes that were collected through house-to-house activities. This should include the envelopes returned with nothing in them.
- Destroy and recycle all collector badges and authorisation certificates.
- By 20 July each year complete the money returns form (Form A) This must then be signed by you (as the Christian Aid Week treasurer) If you held a house-to-house collection you must ensure the Form A is checked and countersigned by your independent verifier.
- If you have a Christian Aid group bank account return this form with a bank account statement.
- Send the money returns form (Form A) and any supporting documentation to the office indicated on the paperwork.
- Recycle leftover paying-in stationery.
- Please retain all other supporting documentation, including banking counterfoils, receipts and lists of collectors. Please store documentation securely for seven years, and in accordance with Data Protection guidelines.
What should I know about handling donations?
- Envelopes and collecting tins must be opened in the presence of two or more unrelated people.
- The organiser or treasurer must be present when donations tins/envelopes or buckets are being opened. Donations must not be left unattended and tins and buckets must be sealed when in use.
- Keep clear records of your income and banking and always bank proceeds as soon as possible. This includes cheques which can be banked in the same way as cash or returned in the freepost envelope included in the treasurer’s pack or available at caweek.org/resources as soon as possible. If your cheques are of a high value, we recommend banking locally or using an enhanced postal service.
- Please ensure the group or church name and OR reference number is present on all banking stationery, so that all donations can be accurately allocated.
- Gift Aid slips should be stored securely until they are transferred, for example in a locked filing cabinet, as they include donors’ personal details.
- When opening envelopes please make sure the gift aid declared is legitimate, that the correct amount is recorded on the gift aid slip and that gift aid is not inadvertently filed for CAFs and Charity vouchers.
- Supporters in Scotland must follow the extra protocols as identified in the Public Charitable Collections (Scotland) Regulations 1984,information on this is included within the money return form (Form A) for Scotland including information about the issuing and opening of envelopes and cans and the recording of their contents.
How do I classify our fundraising?
- House-to-house – include the total amount collected door to door in Christian Aid Week envelopes.
- Delivery only Collections – include all donations for envelopes delivered but not collected from individual homes.
- Big Brekkie – include money raised through Christian Aid Week breakfasts (please show net amount. The net amount is the total after deductions).
- Public street collections – include money raised using buckets and tins in public areas such as supermarkets, shopping centres, railway stations and on the street (please deduct expenses relating to these collections and show the net amount).
- Church collections – include money collected in church services after any deductions (please show net amount).
- Youth fundraising – include money raised by youth and children’s groups (please show net amount).
- Other Christian Aid Week fundraising events – include money raised by events such as concerts, parties, dinners, fêtes or cake sales, and sponsored events such as bike rides, walks and swims, after any deductions (please show net amount).
How do I deal with expenses?
Clearly mark any expenses for H2H and delivery only in the appropriate section of the money returns form (Form A).
Expenses relating to fundraising events or other activity (for example, hiring a hall or buying prizes) should be deducted from the money raised.
Important note: please ensure you deduct all expenses before paying Christian Aid Week funds to Christian Aid. Christian Aid cannot reimburse costs of fundraising at a later date.
Does my groups bank account need to be included on the form A?
Yes, but only if it is a Christian Aid bank account. Some Christian Aid committees have bank accounts that are used to hold money raised for Christian Aid during the year (these should not be confused with church bank accounts).
When will I receive an acknowledgement of my payments?
Once we have received the money returns form (Form A) or been informed that we have received all your payments for Christian Aid Week we will send your group or church a final acknowledgement. You can also request an acknowledgement through your bank giro slip for any payments you make into the bank.
Does my Form A need to be checked?
The Christian Aid group treasurer is responsible for completing your Form A, making sure the form is verified by an independent person if a house-to-house collection took place, and returning it to Christian Aid. Please pass on all supporting documentation to your independent verifier. See the FAQ below on who can be your independent verifier.
The duties of an independent verifier are:
- checking consistency of the amount raised through house-to-house collections with the money returns form (Form A)
- checking consistency of expense claims with the money returns form (Form A)
- confirming that all collections undertaken by your group have been accounted for
- checking that money has been paid to Christian Aid
When all these duties have been carried out, the independent verifier should sign the money returns form (Form A) Once you have also signed it, you should return it to Christian Aid
Who can be our independent verifier?
Your independent verifier should be someone who is not influenced, or perceived to be influenced, by either close personal relationships with you or by involvement in the financial administration of Christian Aid Week such as a spouse of a member. The Christian Aid Week organiser cannot be your independent verifier.
Your independent verifier should check the completed form alongside banking counterfoils and receipts, lists of collectors and any other relevant supporting documentation.
How does Christian Aid reclaim tax paid by UK taxpayers?
For tax to be reclaimed by Christian Aid, the donor must fill in the Gift Aid declaration on their envelope with their full name and address, including postcode, and amount given. The people who open the envelopes should check the amount inside against the figure stated on the Gift Aid declaration. Where donors have completed their name and address but left the donation amount blank, enter the total donated on the form. Please send all completed Gift Aid declarations by 6 July each year using the Freepost plastic bag provided, being sure to write your group reference number on the bag or use one of your group stickers. We cannot claim Gift Aid unless we can match up the envelopes with the money paid in. (Please only use bags with an address in Worksop. You should discard any others.)
Please note that tax cannot be reclaimed on charity vouchers. If someone has filled in the Gift Aid declaration on an envelope containing Charities Aid Foundation vouchers or similar, please destroy and discard this declaration. For Christian Aid to claim Gift Aid on donations recorded on sponsorship forms, please follow the instructions on the forms, then return them along with your Gift Aid declarations using the Freepost plastic bag provided.
Which banks can I use?
We recommend Barclays Bank. Our slips can be presented at other banks but acceptance is at the discretion of the branch and other banks may not accept large amounts of cash.
I’ve received an old style £10 note. What should I do?
The old paper £10 notes will no longer be legal tender from 1 March 2018. However, if you do get any old £5 or £10 notes, Barclays and most banks will still accept these so keep them to one side and take them to the bank when you pay in your money.
If you have any problems please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I pay in at the Post Office?
If you have a post office paying in card you can reuse this each year to pay in funds. If you need to order a card please contact email@example.com and we can process a card to pay in funds for your church group.
Please note that the Post Office has recently changed its policy and branches no longer have to accept loose coins from customers making cash deposits. For all denominations of coin below £1, only full bags will be accepted.
Payzone payments are no longer available – if you have Payzone card please destroy it.
Returning your form
Please return the money return form (Form A) as soon as possible, and no later than 20 July each year. It should be returned together with your Christian Aid group bank account statement (if applicable).
Please retain all other supporting documentation, including banking counterfoils, receipts and lists of collectors. Please store documentation securely for seven years, and in accordance with Data Protection guidelines.