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Archived: NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS): mini-charity review

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Mini-charity review of NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS), an organisation that invites the public to donate to it, and that is connected, through Richard Menteith, to the CMA Standards C0uncil, Christian Management Australia’smajor new initiative, accrediting Christian organisations against a set of standards of good governance, financial oversight, and fundraising ethics.’

(Including the answers to the questions that the Australian charity regulator, the ACNC, suggests that you ask.)

Is it responsive to feedback?

  • When sent a draft of this review, on 30 March 2017, they…did not respond.

Is it registered?

  • Yes, as a charity.
  • STARTTS is a public company, a company limited by guarantee.
    • Not, as its ABN record shows, an ‘Other Incorporated Entity’.
  • There are three other charities with STARTTS in their name:
    • South Sudan STARTTS (should have ‘Limited’/’Ltd’ on the end)
      • It operates from the same address as STARTTS.
    • Friends of STARTTS Inc. (Y 10372-04 Associations) (shouln’t have the last part)
      • Donations to STARTTS go to this charity, not STARTTS, it operates from STARTTS’ premises, and the ‘Charity Address for Service’ is the email of one of the directors of STARTTS.
    • STARTTS Clinical and Facilities Trust
      • It operates from the same address as STARTTS, the ‘Charity Address for Service’ is the (work) email of one of the directors of STARTTS, and it shares two directors with STARTTS.
    • The financial statements are only for STARTTS, and although the Notes says that there are related parties, they are not identified. But does STARTTS control at least the last two charities?
  • STARTTS trades under the name ‘STARTTS’, but they have not registered the name.
  • STARTTS raises money on the internet. It has no fundraising licences[1].

What does STARTTS do?

Do they share the Gospel?

  • No.

What impact are they having?

  • Nothing systematic found.

What do they spend outside the costs directly incurred in delivering the above impact, that is, on administration?

  • The way the expenses are classified does not allow this calculation. (The information it too out-of-date anyway.)

Can you get a tax deduction?

  • Yes

Is their online giving secure?

What choices do you have in how your donation is used?

  • None. It all goes, without explanation, to another charity, Friends of STARTTS Inc.

Is their reporting up-to-date?

  • No (two and a half months overdue; last year they reported six months late).

Does their reporting comply with the regulator’s requirements?

  • Annual Information Statement 2015 (AIS 2015): No
    • Most of the figures in the ‘Income Statement’ do not match those in the Financial Report.
    • No outcomes are reported.
    • ‘NSW STARTTS’ is not an ‘Other name’.
  • Financial Report 2015: Yes (except that it is well out-of-date).

What financial situation was shown in that Report?

  • Too out-of-date to be relevant.

What did the auditor say about the last financial statements?

  • Too out-of-date to be relevant.

If a charity, is their page on the ACNC Register complete?

  • Yes. But
    • ‘NSW Startts’ is neither a trading name nor a business name.
    • ‘Responsible Persons’ is incomplete.

Who are the people controlling the organisation?

  • The 11 people here:
  • None of whom are the (two only) responsible persons shown on the ACNC Register:
    • Lachlan Murdoch
    • Richard Menteith
      • Richard is a director of Christian Management Advancement Ltd, the organisation that is introducing a set of standards for Christian organisations, compliance with which will allow display of the CMA Standards Council seal.
    • The constitution requires a minimum of eight directors.

To whom is STARTTS accountable?

  • To the ACNC.
  • And, as a company, to ASIC.



  1. Opinions vary on whether an internet invitation qualifies as ‘fundraising’.