One recurring question we get is how to open a bank account to receive money for your local group (or working group). The most straightforward solution is to open a bank account under one of the members’ name (or under the name of 2 or 3 of them). That works for small amounts of money. But it’s not ideal. You quickly run into transparency and liability issues. It’s also very hard once you need to hand the bank account over to new rebels.
What XR UK has done is to use an existing legal entity (Compassionate Revolution Ltd) and asked them to act as their “fiscal sponsor”. That means that the legal entity is holding money on behalf of the XR group and pays their expenses.
We have created such entity in Brussels that can act as a fiscal sponsor for any group for the climate justice movement (including XR, and FridaysForFuture groups) across the eurozone.
You first need to apply on https://opencollective.com/allforclimate/apply and add at least a second administrator (aka core contributor) of the other gender. We will then schedule with you a zoom call for a quick due diligence and answering your questions.
Whenever you have an expense, you can file it on that page. One of the admins of your group will have to approve the expense (up to you to define who should be the admins, you can easily change them anytime. We recommend doing a rotation to follow the XR principle of actively mitigating for power).
Once a week, the people managing the fiscal host (“All For Climate ASBL”), go over all the approved expenses to actually reimburse them (or pay directly the vendor if you submitted an invoice instead of a receipt). The fiscal host has no decision making power. As long as the receipt/invoice is legal and approved by one of the admins of your group, it will be paid.
To add money to your group (aka collective), people can make one time donations by bank transfer for free (to the IBAN number of the non profit entity). They need to go through the interface so that they can receive the bank details by email along with a unique number so that the fiscal host can attach the money received to your collective. The donor can also control the way they want to be displayed publicly (they can opt to remain incognito or to use the name they want).
You need to be a local group (or working group) of a movement for climate justice (FridaysForFuture, ParentsForFuture, XR, ...) based in the eurozone and active for at least 2 months.
You need to apply and add at least a second person as an admin of your collective. You must have at least one man and one woman. We will do a zoom call with you to do a quick due diligence.
We offer weekly office hours through Zoom to answer any question. Please book a time here.
Yes but to reduce the administrative overhead, we ask you to do a payout from that crowdfunding platform up to once a month to the paypal account of the fiscal host. It will show up as one entry in your public ledger on your collective page (e.g. “December donations on Chuffed.org / GoFundMe / ...”). Individuals who donated through such external platform, won’t show up as financial contributors.
A valid expense must show the legal name and address of the vendor, the amount, and the date.
There is no VAT on donations and we don’t get the VAT back on purchases.
For now, it’s people from XR Antwerp and XR Brussels. We will add more people from other local groups as we go. The statutes of the non profit are publicly available here. They had to be in French to respect Belgian’s laws, but we prepended them with a TLDR in English.
The governance follows the rules of sociocracy and the 10 principles of Extinction Rebellion. Our board is gender balanced and we actively mitigate for power.
Absolutely. This entity belongs to the community. As stated in the articles of incorporation:
“Effective members are elected annually by the community (defined as any member of any collective that is an adherent member of the association) through an “election without candidates” that will ensure a good gender and, if possible, age and regional balance. To mitigate for power, new members are favored over existing ones. They have full powers over the association.”
We are looking for accountants and lawyers but also for rebels who just want to help. Please reach out by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with a quick word about you, your availabilities and what you’d love to do.
You can also contribute financially by making a donation to our collective.
We are using a sustainable bank: VDK in Ghent.
It’s all volunteer based for now. We hope to be able to get some funding to help us cover the operating expenses (accounting, legal, …) and eventually some VLE (Volunteer Living Expenses) for the people that will spend time to do all the administrative work (so that you don’t have to). You can also help us by donating to our collective.
Here is the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that binds your local group to that non profit entity. It is the same as the one between XR UK and Compassionate Revolution Ltd that can you find below for reference. Two of you will have to sign it (can be done electronically).
Your group remains a fully independent unincorporated partnership.
Anytime. But you will first have to empty the balance that you have. You can do so either by filing expenses / receipts or by making a donation of the balance to another non profit organisation that is also supporting initiatives for climate justice.
Yes please. You should totally consider doing this if you have the capacity. We will actively help you. The more decentralized we are, the more resilient we will be.
Right now we only support euros. For other currencies, we invite you to consider creating another legal entity that can act as a fiscal host (see question above).
It’s the platform that we are using to keep track of the balance of each group. It also provides a profile page to make it easy for your group to file expenses, approve them and know at all times how much money you have in your account. It’s open source but we are using the hosted version on opencollective.com.