How to keep the NLCA sustainable

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'How to keep the NLCA sustainable' page

Donations through Charity Choice

By Lynne Arnold, outgoing NLCA Secretary on behalf of the Officers

Over the past year we’ve had a lot of discussions about keeping the NLCA relevant, accessible and open to the whole of the North Laine community. Many ideas have been expressed and initiatives have been set in motion to achieve this.  However, we have not, up until now, discussed how to ensure that the Community Association is financially sustainable.

Not an expensive organisation to run

In his annual report to the 2011 AGM, the outgoing Treasurer explained that the NLCA is not an expensive organisation, costing about £800-900 per year to run, excluding the cost of the North Laine Runner newsletter, as this is self-funding over the period of a year.  Our costs are about £300 for room rental, £360 for the website and about £200 for insurance, miscellaneous projects and events.

Reserves for a couple of years

Previously, we have funded the Association mainly through running the occasional bric-a-brac stall.  However, this is no longer effective and during the past few years we haven’t managed to raise much money. We currently have reserves that could cover our costs for a couple of years but, without a plan to bring in more money, we may not be able to continue.

Three options for the future

The Officers put forward three options for the Association:

(i)                 to run ourselves down to closure

(ii)                to become a membership organisation

(iii)               to seek other sources of funding, such as donations or sponsorship.

Implications of option 1

The implications of these options are that, if the NLCA closes, North Laine no longer has a voice within the wider community and there would be no way for us to advocate on behalf of residents' concerns.

Implications of option 2

If we were to become a membership organisation, we would no longer be recognised as a LAT (Local Action Team), as we could not represent the views of the whole of North Laine.

Finding other sources not easy

Finding other sources of funding is not an easy option either, as it requires us either to ask for money from residents (our neighbours and friends) or to seek sponsorship (with sponsors asking why they should do it and what they would get in return).

Agreed to ask for donations

At the February 2011 NLCA meeting, it was unanimously agreed that we should ask the residents of North Laine for a donation to ensure the future sustainability of the NLCA.

A constantly evolving community

This decision was made because it reflects the ethos that North Laine is a vibrant and constantly evolving community made up of many and varied people, each one of whom should have the opportunity to support and be supported by their community. It was therefore felt that it was a reasonable request to offer residents the opportunity to donate to the NLCA.

Registered with Charity Choice

To facilitate this decision, we have registered with Charity Choice, which will enable a secure way for residents to donate online. Our officers are also happy to accept cash and cheques on behalf of the Association (cheques to be made out to the North Laine Community Association).

How to donate online

To donate online, go to:

www.charitychoice.co.uk

We are also in the process of registering for Gift Aid, which will enable us to claim back the tax on your donation.  All we need to claim this is your name and address – this information will not be used for any other purposes.

Please help to keep the NLCA going

We hope that you will be able to spare a few pounds to keep the NLCA going well into the future.  Many thanks.


[Previously published in the North Laine Runner, No 210, May/June 2011]

This page was added on 07/06/2011.

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