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How to get CSR Funding for your NGO ?- Internal Control System

Why a company having huge CSR funds and want to implement genuine projects, should give funds to your organization ?  This is the question you should ask to yourself and do not indulge into the malpractices as mentioned in this part 1 of this CSR series.

How to get CSR funding for your NGO?-PART 1

Most of the organizations are good at what they are doing in terms of implementing projects and grass root work, but they are not good in maintaining documentations and showing their good work to the world. Read this Part 2 blog, where I mentioned how you should showcase your good work.

How to get CSR Funding for your NGO ?- Program Quality – PART 2

Before we go ahead with Part 3 of this series regarding maintenance of Financial and Internal Control System, look at this latest news regarding spending Rs. 2,80,00,00,00,000 in last three years under CSR by the companies.

Accounting and Financial Control System

When you are approaching companies for CSR funding, it is almost prerequisite that NGO’s Accounting and Financial Control system is matched with the industry standards. You have to remember this:-

  • Regular Accounting (zero backlog)
  • Accurate Accounting
  • High Quality of Supporting (Single rupee spent hast to be  supported by Bills and Vouchers)
  • Strong Internal Control System
  • Watertight Cash Management System
  • Efficient Advance Management System

 

Statutory Compliance

No company will be ready to fund your organization if you have not followed all the Statutory Compliance. As a first step, list down the following compliance and check which  you followed in your organization. For remaining compliance, why you are not following it. Take expert opinion whether it is applicable to your NGO or not.

  • 12A – 80G
  • TDS
  • Income Tax Act
  • GST
  • FCRA
  • PF
  • ESIC
  • Professional Tax
  • Trust and Society Act

 

Governance

How your NGOs working is governing by the members ? Is your NGO is  one man army? Is it look like Proprietorship or Partnership Firm? Whose taking decision and how? These are some of the questions which may be asked at the time or per-scrutiny of project.

  • Authority Matrix
  • Decision Flow
  • Rotation in the Board Members
  • Election or Selection procedure of new board members
  • General Meeting and Executive Body Meetings
  • Maintenance of Minutes of such meetings
  • Intimation of Change in the Board Members

 

Policies

Following policy documents should be prepared and implemented in the NGO

  • Financial Policy
  • HR Policy
  • Accounting Manual
  • General Work Policy
  • Anti Corruption Policy
  • Gender Policy
  • Child Policy, if applicable

Hope the above information will be useful to you in getting CSR funds. We will discuss in next part of this series on how to approach companies for CSR funding.

Part -4 How to approach companies for CSR funds? – Coming Soon

Disclaimer : This blog is purely for the education purpose and author is NOT providing any services to get CSR funding.

Pros and cons of per/km Travel Policy of NGO ?

In earlier posts, we have seen what should be good NGO Travel Policy.  As questions asked by many of my readers regarding each traveling policy in detail,  I inspire to write a blog on each  Traveling Policies prevailing in the NGO sectors in detail and also its advantages and disadvantages. Today, Let us take a traveling policy used by many NGOs, from small one to huge one, which is per kilometer charge to project.

Charging per kilometer to Funding Agency

We all know that NGOs have to agree on a specific budget with Funding Agencies. Many of the NGOs have decided per kilometer rate and charged to Funding Agency and created a Fund with whatever name, be it Vehicle Maintenance Fund, Vehicle Fund, Traveling Fund Reserve…. etc.. Now from this fund, actual expenses for travel (Fuel, Servicing, Oil etc…) is paid. Is this an ideal policy? In my opinion a BIG NO. One should avoid this policy. Lets us discuss positive and negative points of this travel policy of ngo. Start with Negative.

Why one should avoid this policy?

  1. The amount charged to Funding Agencies may or may not be same as actual total expenses of travel. This lead to generate surplus amount in your Vehicle Fund in your Balance Sheet at the end of the year.
  2. This give wrong impression, that you are saving some money from year to year from Projects supported by funding agency.
  3. Some NGOs even raise a Bill of Traveling to Funding Agency as support. This will lead into double entry of Income and expenses. First time entered as income in Grant Received and Project Expenses and second time Traveling Income by raising invoice and actual travel expenses. If you are doing this , stop it immediately.
  4. By using this you are violating terms of Project Agreement with Funding Agency. Because you agreed to spent budgeted money on specific Project. However when you adopt this policy, you are saving some money and not actually spending all as per agreed budget.
  5. As per FCRA rules, you have to spent Foreign Grants for the purpose it is received. You can not create reserve or Vehicle Fund  from FC money.
  6. When Vehicle Fund gets accumulated from year to year and showing balance of considerable amount on Liability side on Balance Sheet, it is assumed that you have that much amount in your Bank or FDs on the assets side correspondingly. This sometime become obstacles in getting fund from Funding Agencies.

What is the solution then ?

In my opinion, Actual expenses of travel to be booked to project. In supporting, original fuel bills, maintenance bills should be attached. In second level supporting, a Log book should be maintained. In case of more than one project, bills and expenditure should be divided proportionately.

Summary

Try to adopt that Traveling policy which suits your organization and your funding agencies more. My advice is, if you are following this travel policy, add one clause in the agreement with funding agency.

 

What should be Good NGO Traveling Policy ?

ONE of the main question asked by funding agency before approving any budget is what is your NGO Traveling Policy? In NGO Traveling Expenditure is one of the major component of total budget, whether traveling for Project Implementation, Advocacy, Training, Monitoring, and thus there must be  particular NGO traveling policy for the organization.

IN this article, i would like to focus on which points to be keep in mind while framing traveling policy so that it becomes best.

Good NGO Traveling Policy is one which is in Writing

You may be have one of the best traveling policy and procedures implemented in your NGO, but if it is not on paper, it is useless. Traveling policy must be in writing and must be part of the NGOs Working Manual

Good NGO Traveling Policy is one which is Approved

After framing NGO traveling policy, it is advisable to approve and authorized by trustees or by board members or may be by chairman and secretary.

It should not be rigid

NGO Traveling Policy should not be rigid, in the sense, that one rate or one rule for traveling expenditure can not apply to all types of travelling

It should frame according to Types of Traveling and conveyance

There are different are types of traveling and conveyance we can see in NGO. Sometimes traveling expenditures are reimbursed, sometimes NGO is having own vehicle, sometime staff use own vehicle for project work, sometimes funding agency provide vehicles or provide funds to purchase vehicles. So NGO traveling policy should includes all these possibilities.

Supporting and proof of Traveling

NGO Traveling Policy should includes which type of supporting or proof staff has to give to account and finance department after traveling. It may be Traveling Summery Sheet or Monthly Conveyance Statement or Log Book etc..

Avoid CHARGING of Traveling Expenditure to Project

Some of the NGOs are following practice of charging fixed per kilometer amount and transfer this to some pool or fund and then fuel and maintenance are paid from that pool. It is strongly recommended not to follow this type of practice of “charging” Expenditure to Project.

Summary

Apart from above points, there may be many other points to be consider while framing traveling policy depending upon the nature and work of your NGO. But, one has to keep in mind all the above points to framing good traveling policy.

Hope this will help you in your NGO, if you have any question,  you can ask here or chat with us. Also your comments are welcome on the above subject.