Portal Helps Charities Complete 2013 AIS
14 January 2014 at 11:19 am
In the first six months since its release on acnc.gov.au, over 15,000 charities have logged on and completed (11,000) or commenced (4,000) the 2013 Annual Information Statement.
ACNC Commissioner Susan Pascoe AM recently wrote to all charities to introduce the ACNC Charity Portal and to inform charities reporting on the standard financial year that they have an extension to submit their 2013 Annual Information Statement.
“I have extended the reporting deadline for charities using the standard 1 July to 30 June financial year from 31 December 2013, to 31 March 2014, given that this is the first time charities have had to submit this information,” Pascoe said.
“We estimate that about half of Australia’s 58,000 registered charities report on a standard financial year, so this extension gives those charities a little extra time to complete their first Annual Information Statement.
“In addition to providing an extension, we have opened the ACNC Charity Portal to help charities complete their Annual Information Statement online, have published a range of guidance and education tools, and have advice staff available nine hours a day to answer calls and emails.
“We have also worked with large groups and charities to facilitate bulk lodgement for reporting. To date, over 1,000 Annual Information Statements have been submitted via bulk lodgement, and we expect this will continue to rise.”
Caroline Whitby, Manager of Philanthropy at The Trust Company, recently lodged over 300 Annual Information Statements through the ACNC’s bulk lodgement process.
“Earlier in the year a group of representatives from a number of private trustee companies met with the ACNC and we discussed the common issues that we anticipated,” Whitby said.
“It was great that the ACNC took our concerns on board and worked fast to develop the bulk lodgement form to simplify this process for us. We have found that working with the ACNC staff has been a simple and straightforward experience. They have always been willing to provide helpful advice to assist us.”
The information charities provide to the ACNC is largely uploaded to the ACNC Register. The ACNC Register gives members of the public and donors a reliable source of information about all registered charities. The ACNC has analysed the submissions to date and has noted that:
The majority (35 per cent) of submissions have been from charities in New South Wales, followed by Victoria (23 per cent) and Queensland (19 per cent). Western Australia accounted for 9 per cent, South Australia 8 per cent, Tasmania 3 per cent, the Australian Capital Territory 2 per cent, and the Northern Territory 1 per cent.
Charities who reported that they work to help people overseas most commonly listed India, Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.
In terms of charity size, small charities – those with annual revenue of $250,000 or less – have led the way accounting for 67 per cent of submissions. Medium charities (annual revenue between $250,000 and $1million) have accounted for 16 per cent and large charities (annual revenue of $1m and over) 17 per cent.
The “advancement of education” has been the most common charitable purpose among the charities that have submitted their 2013 Annual Information Statement. A close second and third were; “the relief of poverty, sickness, or the needs of the aged”, and “the advancement of religion”.
Charities that still need to complete their 2013 Annual Information Statement can log onto the ACNC Charity Portal at charity.acnc.gov.au, using their Australian Business Number as their username and the password that the ACNC sent in early December 2013.
Charities needing help and support can contact the ACNC by calling 13 ACNC (13 22 62) or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.