SOME ORGANIZATIONS engage in charitable activities, or corporate philanthropy, to give back to the society what the society invested in them. For example, a successful communications company can open up a free sports training facility for young people to maximize on their sports potential or keep them out of trouble. On the other hand, firms can also engage in charity so as to identify with the society in a bid to attract more customers. Some companies engage in tree planting activities so that people can see that they are concerned with environmental issues, thus gaining favor in the public’s eye.
Whatever your selection criteria or reason for selecting one charity over another, or starting one of your own, it is important to recognize a few basic facts that you should apply as you consider engaging in corporate philanthropy:
- You should first consider whether or not the charity work you choose best represents your company’s goal and vision. Don’t rush to join a charity drive without knowing what it stands for. Research the pros and cons of engaging your company in a particular organization’s mission and how it will affect your customers and their opinion of you. Some customers may be offended by charity organizations that lean toward a certain political party or social cause. For example, if you donate your employees’ time for a political rally, your customers who oppose that politician or party may view your efforts unfavorably.
- Charity organizations are supposed to be non-profit. Even if you make a lot of money from activities or receive donations, make sure that you direct them toward their original cause. You’ll be required to give a detailed account of how you spend money and the total assets in your possession by preparing an income and expenditure account and balance sheet. Like when you open a children’s home; it’s expected that all the profits you get in terms of donations should be directed to the kids’ welfare.
- Avoid starting charity organizations for selfish economic reasons. There are some large international companies that open up a lot of charity organizations in foreign countries so as to avoid taxation and proper valuation by the government. During taxation, they transfer some of their financial assets to accounts of these fake charities in the pretence of donations; the level of taxation they will be subjected to by the government will not reflect the company’s true financial position. Charity organizations opened by these unscrupulous firms are registered under separate names that don’t reflect any association with multinationals that started them. It therefore becomes difficult to trace the source of income for such charities because they are many and under different names.
- Finally, you should know the various forms of donation available to your charity of choice. This way, you can analyze your own abilities and work with them to best suit both organizations. Some common forms of charitable contributions include money, time, labor and event sponsorship.
In conclusion, you have to receive state authorization before starting a charity course. The state will research your organization’s background profile to see if you have ever had issues with the law, particularly in regard to your finances. If it is found that you have pending court cases and a past of law breaking, then your proposal to start the course can be revoked. Your financial position will also be assessed so as to ensure that the venture is not a joke or unethical façade for something else.