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We organise a national event which involves volunteers coordinating a local event once every two years. Previously we advised them to set up a bank account under the name of the event, and receive cheques to that, and pay out costs eg for venue hire from that. Now banks are less keen, as it doesn’t make them much money just to have the account used for a short time.
But it’s also not ideal to ask local attendees to make their cheques payable to the local organiser.
We could get everyone to make their cheques payable to the main charity, but that gets us into the hassle of organising payments for venue hire etc from the main charity for up to 40 local events.
I think you need to get a grip on this process – while I agree that it may be easier to receive a net donation from your local orgaisers, they will be better able to raise funds if the money is paid in through the organisation’s accounts, and you will be better able to answer the questions when the Inlkand Revenue decide to audit your accounts – an infrequent but potentially scary process!
If you are receiving a sum which you regard as significant, it is not unreasonable for you to put in place some procedures which ensure the sound stewardship of the funds. I know money is dirty and inconvenient, but it’s why most of us are here!