Care: At least some of the information about this charity is no longer current. Use the ‘Search charity names’ box to see if there is a later review. If the latest review has a message like this, you are welcome to make your case for an updated review via email to email@example.com.
This is a review in the series ‘Organisations accredited by the CMA Standards Council’. The CMA Standards Council is ‘a ministry of Christian Ministry Advancement’, with a mission “to help build faith and trust in Christian organisations, be they churches, charities, schools or otherwise, to enable them to achieve more effective outcomes.
‘Churches of Christ in Victoria & Tasmania Inc’ was accredited in May this year.
The charities’ regulator, the ACNC, in their article, Donating to Legitimate Charities, gives “some things to consider to help you make sure your donation is going where it is intended”:
1. Check the charity’s name.
2. Ask for identification from anyone seeking a donation.
3. Be careful of online requests for donations.
4. No tax deduction doesn’t mean the charity is not a legitimate one, and
5. Find out more about how the charity says it uses donations.
1. A search on the ACNC Register for ‘Churches of Christ in Victoria & Tasmania Inc’ gives no result. Changing to the website name fares no better. But dropping ‘& Tasmania Inc’ from the name finds a registered charity: Churches of Christ in Victoria & Tasmania (CCVT).
An ASIC search confirms that the ACNC has registered the name incorrectly – an incorporated association like CCVT must include ‘Inc’ or ‘Incorporated’ at the end of its name. It also means that the name on the CCVT website is wrong.
2. There is nothing in CCVT’s material to suggest that they use either door-to-door or street collectors.
3. The CCVT website is secure. However, for the one giving option that takes online donations, there is nothing about the security of your information.
4. CCVT’s ABN record (via the ACNC Register) says that a tax deduction is not available.
5. The use of your donations
Context See here.
Shares the Gospel? No
Financial Report 2019
The audited statement of what CCVT did with their money is the Financial Report 2019 on the ACNC Register. The quality of the directors’ decision-making shown in this report should give you pause before donating:
- They disclose (Note 16) that CCVT controls two (indirectly three) other charities
But these two charities have not been consolidated (that is, their transactions and balances included in the CCVT accounts), and there is no explanation for that decision.
- The directors believe (Note 1) that all 130+ churches and their members, all 39 staff [Annual Information Statement 2019], and all those customers contributing to the $997K sales revenue [Financial Report] can ring the CCVT office and command ‘reports tailored so as to satisfy specifically all of their information needs’.
- What this means is that it is likely that if you are reading this, then the financial statements are not the kind that have been prepared for you.
- The directors do not explain why, if their charity PCCC (see above) is not included in the CCVT accounts, they include property assets belonging to PCCC (Note 2).
- The directors do not explain how the audit remained an ‘independent audit’ when the auditor both prepare the financial statements and audited them[Note 17].
- Include two non-standard material items without explaining them.
- The 130+ churches are not included as related parties [Note 16].
Where the donations went
If you still want to know where the money went, here’s the expenses for the year (from the Statement of Profit or Loss and Other Comprehensive Income, with last year’s figures in the second column):
CCVT did not include their Directors’ Report (or similar) in the Financial Report 2019, so we don’t know the composition of the board when the accounts were signed.
From the website, these are the directors now:
This David Oon?
This Rick Wright?
The ACNC Register has Sum-Oi Kirkpatrick instead of Esther Kirkpatrick, but wepresume that it is the same person.
Nothing systematic found.
CCVT sees feedback as valuable (the Complaints Policy, here):
We sent CCVT a draft of this review. They….did not respond.
- Link added by us. ↑
- Emphasis in original. ↑
- However, four months later they have yet to be entered in the Give Confidently Directory (http://www.cmasc-generosity.net.au/directory.php). ↑
- A section in the article, Donating and Volunteering: ↑◦ Focus on the nature of the charity’s work, its beneficiaries and the impact the charity is having in the community.◦ Is it clear what the charity is trying to achieve and how its activities work towards its objectives?◦ Would you like to spend your money, or time if volunteering, to support these objectives?
◦ Is the charity being transparent about its activities? ↑
- They don’t even acknowledge in the footer or on the ‘Contact’ page that they are incorporated.) ↑
- Presumably it’s the Victorian one of these two: ↑
- . ‘When Helping Hurts by Brian Fikkert and Steve Corbett says this about sharing the Gospel: ‘A host of contextual issues determine the best manner and the appropriate time to present the gospel verbally, particularly in militant Muslim or Hindu settings. But without such a presentation, it is not possible for people to be personally transformed in all their relationships, which is what poverty alleviation is all about’ [Kindle Locations 1262-1264, Moody Publishers]. ↑