Fee Free April!

March 24th, 2014

With all the appeals & nominations raising huge funds at the moment, we decided that we wanted to do something to make sure charities get the most out of your hard work.

Join us for Fee Free April where we will cover all banking & credit card charges for the month so that 100% of your donations will go towards the charity.

Simply create your fundraising page here to get started. You can link images & a personal blog to your page & share it with your friends & family to spread the word!

If your favourite charity isn’t on the site yet then please let them know it’s completely free to get set up. Contact us if you have any questions!

Guest Post: The Guys Who Won Jailbreak14!

March 12th, 2014

Can one get to Sydney in 36 hours without spending any money? No? Think again.

Our trip was one that involved planning, blagging, luck and some more luck. We managed to secure sponsorship for our journey before departure, but by no means did that mean that our trip was an easy task. We blagged our way to the airport. Almost missed our connecting flight. Landed in Sydney with 15 minutes to go. Got funny looks at every interaction with airport staff. And at the beginning of the day, we almost had to cancel our trip as our stuff went missing on the streets of Dublin. The list goes on… But without all of what happened, would there even be a story?

By the end of our trip we were tired, sleep deprived and jet lagged. But it was totally worth it. We had no plans whatsoever for the duration of our stay in Sydney and thanks to luck and a wonderful person, we ended up staying there for free.

Jailbreak14 is an event that raised over €36000 for charity, more than triple the amount it raised the year before. Impressive to say the least. And hopefully this is set to continue next year.

What did we as participants get out of it? An experience that we will never ever forget.

Perhaps you’ve already made your mind up about doing it next year. Perhaps not. Just do it. No regrets.

How We Keep Your Donations Safe

July 23rd, 2013

Recent news has seen a couple of on-line donation facilities potentially leave charities out-of-pocket.

Sponsor.ie wants to reassure all our charities and users that this could not ever happen through Sponsor.ie because we have measures in place to prevent these problems.

All donations made through Sponsor.ie go in to a dedicated ‘Client Account’ – this is not our main account and therefore is not used to pay any costs associated with the running of the business, eg. rent, wages, hosting costs. All donated moneys are ringfenced in this account and can not be touched until our monthly transfer.

Every month, the appropriate amounts are transferred to the charities (less our percentage fee). At this point our total fee is also transferred out of the account in to our main account.

More than that, because we only charge a small percentage fee (and no monthly fees or one-off fees) our charities can never be out-of-pocket.

Where one or two organisastions have allegedly gone wrong is that they were able to dip in to the donation amounts to pay costs and losses they had made elsewhere. This is totally unacceptable and puts so much good work at risk. We encourage all charities to doublecheck with their suppliers to ensure they also have the appropriate measures in place to protect their donations.

Sponsor.ie Launches Donation Phoneline!

July 17th, 2012

We love on-line! You love on-line!

But not everyone does. A quarter of Irish people still don’t use the internet. Lots of people are still hesitant to make a donation on-line. We all have friends and relatives that don’t trust the wicked world wide web.

That’s a problem for the charities that are trying to move their donations on-line to reduce their costs. And it’s a problem for you, as a fundraiser.

That’s why Sponsor.ie has launched a donation telephone line for all our charities and all our fundraisers. Starting today anybody that wants to sponsor you or donate to your favourite charity now has the option to pick up the phone and speak to a HUMAN! You’ll get through to one of our lovely Donor Care staff who will process your credit card or laser card donation.

This service doesn’t cost any of our charities or fundraisers anything extra. It’s an amazing service to the thousands of little charities out there who don’t have the time to constantly man a phone and don’t have the money to pay for someone to do it.

Initially the phone line will be open Monday to Friday 9:00am to 5:30pm. We plan to extend this over the coming months until eventually all you lovely charities and fundraisers around the world have a donation line open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at no extra cost.

We think this new feature will reduce costs and increase the amount of money you raise for all the fantastic causes you love.

Won’t that be amazing?

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Sponsor.ie is announced as a winner of eircom’s Start Up Initiative!

July 6th, 2012

We’re delighted to announce that this past month we have been named as the third and final winner of eircom’s Start Up Initiative!

Start Up is an initiative designed to nurture and reward Ireland’s entrepreneurial spirit. The initiative was open to all businesses less than two years old and the aim was to develop a community of active and successful entrepreneurs and provide an opportunity to network online with businesses across Ireland.

Upon entering the competition we were asked to share our motivation for setting up Sponsor.ie and our journey so far via a short video which was filmed by eircom’s video team.

Becoming involved in Start Up has been an excellent opportunity for Sponsor.ie! As a young company it’s great to be able to raise our profile and highlight the amazing fundraising that charities and individuals are doing for lots of worthy causes. As a winner we’ve been awarded a complete eircom telecoms package worth €2300 which we’re very excited about!

We’d like to say a very big thank you toeircom and the rest of the members of the judging panel including, First Step Microfinance, the Small Firms Association (SFA) and Small Business Can.

You can check out our video on eircom’sStart Up YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0sV0RWAmTs. You can also view over 150 other videos that have been uploaded by companies across Ireland showcasing their inspiring stories!

Thanks to everyone for all their support!

OPINION: Proposed Amendments to the Tax Relief for Donations to Charities

February 9th, 2012

I read via Fundraising Ireland yesterday that the ICTR has made a major breakthrough on charitable donations tax relief. The government proposal would see a blanket rate of tax relief of “around 30%” and that the benefit of all tax reliefs would now go to the charity, i.e. self-assessed individuals would no longer receive the benefit themselves.

So far the reaction to this news has been positive but, ever the cynic, I feel it’s important to look at both sides of it and make sure we know what we’re getting ourselves in to. You have to remember that the government are trying to increase tax revenue in all areas and have been making some pretty harsh cuts recently…so why this act of benevolence?

The current rules require individuals to donate over €250 in a calendar year before their donation can even be considered for tax relief. The charity must then ensure the individual signs a CHY2 Cert giving their permission for the charity to claim their tax back. The number of individuals who meet the criteria and also sign and return their form is disappointingly low due to a lack of understanding by many donors, a lack of resources by charities, and simple inertia of donors.

The Irish government has successfully set up a tax relief scheme that ensures the amounts paid out to charities are far lower than it could or should be. Compare it to the UK where ‘GiftAid’ allows a charity to claim relief on every single pound and permission can be sought from donors at the time of their donation. That’s a huge difference.

So let’s look at the proposed changes and the possible issues…

Firstly, the proposed composite rate: at the moment it’s said to be a delightfully vague “around 30%”. The Report of the Commission on Taxation proposed 20%!

20%?!

This doesn’t sound like the proposal of someone that is attempting to “support fundraising initiatives”.

Last year our tax relief campaigns saw 45% of people who return their CHY2 Certs at the higher rate of tax. If we assumed this was the current rate across the board and always will be then we would need to see a composite rate of between 31% and 32% to be fair.

The ICTR are proposing 33%. Fantastic. Love the ICTR. They know what they’re doing – this would be an improvement for all of our charity partners.

But anything less than 31% and essentially what we’re doing is reducing the amount of tax relief charities can claim. Not good, is it?

Suddenly the words “around 30%” are significantly more important. Our definition of “around 30%” and the government’s definition of “around 30%” are very different. It reminds me of the time a tour guide told me there was around a 20% chance of rain…while it was raining.

Secondly, charities receiving all tax relief from self-assessed individuals’ donations would be amazing and a huge injection…I think.

But what about the other side?

Let’s look at one of our fundraising campaigns from last year where we recruited just over 2000 donors for one charity. 5% of those donors were self-assessed for tax purposes (this campaign was slightly lower than our overall average).

Now, the average gift of self-assessed donors was €16.50 per month while the average gift of everyone else was only €15.39.

And what about attrition? A PAYE donor is much more likely to cancel than a self-assessed donor, because in real terms their donation is costing them more. Where 35% of your donors might cancel in the next year, you might find only 20% of your self-assessed donors cancel.

The tax relief these self-assessed donors receive personally is an incentive to keep donating and to donate more. By removing that incentive we will see donor retention decrease and average donations decrease.

But surely the benefit will outweigh the cost?

Perhaps not when you consider that a number of charities receive less than 30% of the CHY2 Certs that they send out (due to poor data, no resources for follow-ups, etc. – we can help! Sales pitch!). A number of smaller charities don’t even send out CHY2 Certs. So it’s not a huge stretch of the imagination to think that, actually, perhaps we need to keep this incentive to the self-assessed so they will continue to support us.

But the ICTR are a smart organisation. They have undoubtedly looked at the stats and know what they’re doing. The problem is that there aren’t that many stats out there. So it’s important you look at your own organisation’s figures and that you do it before May 2012 – the closing date for the receipt of submissions.
Let’s be sure this is what we want.

Regardless of what happens it’s fantastic to see the government talking about it and the ICTR continuing to do great work. Only through this united front will the regulations on charitable donation tax relief continue to change until the point that charities receive the full relief on every single donation.

Simon Scriver is Director of Total Fundraising. He is scheduled to speak at events hosted by both The Wheel and Fundraising Ireland in March 2012.

Sponsor.ie Partner Prizes Launched!

December 2nd, 2011

We are delighted to announce the launch of Sponsor.ie Partner Prizes!

Partner Prizes are more awards and more prizes offered by companies, organisations, charities, individuals, musicians and more! Beyond Sponsor.ie’s own prizes, these extra prizes will give our fundraisers even more great free stuff. Our fundraisers are fantastic – they raise loads of badly needed funds for some of the most amazing charities around the world. They deserve to be rewarded!

Our first Partner Prize is brought to you by Dabba – an outside catering company that specialises in fresh tandoori food and eastern cuisine in Dublin and border counties. They are experts in tandoori cooking along with specialty curries from India, Pakistan, Nepal and the East. They specialise in parties & events large and small.

Dabba also run various market stalls around Dublin and the amazing prize they are offering is a free lunch for you and 3 of your friends! All you have to do is raise €3000 for your favourite charity and you’ll win The Dabba Award! You’ll win lunch for four and you’ll get a nice little Dabba badge on your Sponsor.ie profile page.

Please check out www.dabba.ie to read more about the.

Over the coming weeks and months we will be rolling out more and more of these Partner Prizes. Keep an eye out!

If you would like to offer a Partner Prize to our fundraisers then please get in touch.

More Fundraisers Achieving The Bronze Earner Award!

November 3rd, 2011

More and more of you guys have achieved the Bronze Earner Award! So far 9 different fundraisers have reached this milestone…so well done to you all!

Fundraisers earn the Bronze Award when they have raised €1000 for their favourite charities. You get a little bronze trophy on your profile page and get loads of respect from everyone here in Sponsor.ie! We are in awe of you!

Who will be the first to reach the Silver Award?

You can see the all-time Top Fundraisers here along with how much they have raised.

Here are all the people that have earned the Bronze Award so far:

http://www.sponsor.ie/malin2malahide/
http://www.sponsor.ie/grainne-callan/
http://www.sponsor.ie/brian-cavanagh/
http://www.sponsor.ie/alan-barry/
http://www.sponsor.ie/imelda-prendergast/
http://www.sponsor.ie/ros-drake/
http://www.sponsor.ie/richelle-twomey/
http://www.sponsor.ie/colm-mcdonagh/
http://www.sponsor.ie/david-russell/

Well done everyone!

More Fantastic Charities!

May 31st, 2011

Here are three more very different, but all super, charities which are sponsor.ie:

Dundalk Dog Rescue
Dundalk Dog Rescue is an entirely voluntary non-profit making organisation set up 5 years ago by a group of ordinary people in the community.  Their aim is to do whatever is possible to rescue unwanted dogs from our local Dog Pound and give them a second chance at life.  They all have full time jobs and any work they do for the rescue is in their own time.
Volunteers from Dundalk Dog Rescue go to the pound on a regular basis to photograph and record all of the dogs currently in.  These photographs are then posted on our own website and our Facebook page in the hope that the owners or possibly new owners might see them. We also post the photographs on a website http://www.petsireland.invisionzone.com/ which is used by many dog rescues, in the hope that other rescues might have people interested in adopting the dog.

Kidz Klub
Kidz Klub project motivates children to reach their full potential and to make healthy life choices. Enthusiastic caring volunteers serve as positive role models for children at risk. Interaction with children through weekly clubs and individual home visits consistently support and affirm each child. Kidz Klub project is based on Christian principals.

The Women’s Fund at The Community Foundation for Ireland
When women and girls prosper, entire communities succeed. The Women’s Fund fuels change in our communities by supporting the most innovative and positive solutions to the issues facing women in Ireland today. Their mission is to encourage philanthropy among women, improve the lives of women through social change grant-making, and educate the entire community about the benefits to society when the potential of women is realised.

Fundraiser of the Month Can Now Waive Charity’s Fees!

May 3rd, 2011

OK…let’s try something new…

Until further notice The Fundraiser of the Month can forgo their prize and can now instead choose to waive the 5% fee on all donations to their charity that month – not just the money they have raised, but all the money that charity’s fundraisers have raised!

This would mean sponsor.ie ends up paying all the credit card fees, all the bank fees, all the processing fees, etc. for your favourite organisation. 100% of the donations will go to the charity!

We’re starting this month where our Fundraiser of the Month Brian has decided to give even more to Meningitis Research Foundation. So 100% of all donations made to MRF in April are going to go to the charity.

We hope this extra step will help all you fundraisers and all you charities achieve your goal. Let us know what you think.