SolarBuddy Gift Acceptance Policy

1. Overview

SolarBuddy.org Ltd is an Australian registered DGR Type 1 (ABN 56 612 567 825).

SolarBuddy Inc is an USA registered public charity 501(c) (3) (EIN 84 -3937145).

Henceforth in this Gift Acceptance Policy both SolarBuddy.org Ltd and SolarBuddy Inc, are referred to as SolarBuddy.

SolarBuddy encourages the solicitation and acceptance of gifts for purposes that will help it to further and fulfill its mission.  The following policies and guidelines govern acceptance of gifts made to SolarBuddy.

SolarBuddy’s mission is to gift safe, reliable, effective and innovative solar energy solutions to people who live daily with the devastatingly limiting effects of energy poverty. SolarBuddy’s programs and partnerships aim to connect people and communities across the globe, combining education and sustainable innovation with purpose. SolarBuddy believes that ending energy poverty will transform lives forever, providing future generations and our planet, with the opportunity to thrive.

2. Ethical guidelines for Gifts

Gifts shall support SolarBuddy’s vision, long-term direction, and goals

SolarBuddy will not accept gifts from groups or organisations that

  1. Encroach on the organisation’s integrity;
  2. Are too restrictive in purpose and are deemed to restrict its liberty of action;
  3. Could cause damage to its reputation;
  4. Place unreasonable additional costs or burdens on the organisation or that are too difficult to administer
  5. Expose it to uncertain risk or possible liability
  6. Are for purposes outside its mission

 

3. Types of Gifts

SolarBuddy accepts gifts, donations, grants and funds from individuals, foundations, organisations, associations, employee groups, corporations and other donors. All gifts are considered final, and are subject to this policy. The following types of gifts are deemed eligible for acceptance by SolarBuddy.

  1. Outright gifts of cash, cheques (checks), credit card contributions
  2. Gifts of cryptocurrency.
  3. Publicly traded securities (including stocks, mutual funds and bonds)
  4. Other Gifts, including Gifts in Wills

 

3a Cash

These gifts may take the form of credit/debit card, cheques (checks) and cash. Cash gifts are reported as at the date the gift is received by SolarBuddy. If the gifts are transferred electronically, the donation date is reported as the date of the gift (if available) otherwise the date the funds are received into SolarBuddy bank account may be used. Plans for direct handling of cash including transfer process, recording and reporting must be approved by the Gift Acceptance Committee. 

These gifts are deemed eligible for acceptance by SolarBuddy.

3b Gifts of cryptocurrency

It is SolarBuddy policy to sell immediately upon receipt where possible but in no longer than 5 working days from receipt to its account and convert to cash.

These gifts are deemed eligible for acceptance by SolarBuddy.

3c Securities

These gifts may take the form of publicly traded securities (including stocks, mutual funds and bonds) and must be gifted via SolarBuddy’s preferred method (online platform). The value of the shares is determined on the recognised gift date which is established when the donor relinquishes control of the shares.

These gifts are deemed eligible for acceptance by SolarBuddy.

3d Other gifts

Gift in Wills (Bequests), life insurance policies, and gifts of residual interest.

  • Donors and supporters of SolarBuddy will be encouraged to make these gifts. These will not be recorded as gifts to SolarBuddy until such time as the gift is irrevocable. When the gift is irrevocable, but is not due until a future date, the present value of that gift may be recorded at the time the gift becomes irrevocable.

All ‘other gifts’, including but not limited to gifts in wills, gifts in-kind, gifts of property or non-traditional gifts, should be evaluated by the Gift Acceptance Committee prior to acceptance.  

 

Gift Acceptance Committee – Compliance

There shall be one SolarBuddy Gift Acceptance Committee (the “Committee”). The Gift Acceptance Committee shall consist of

  1. No less than three members.
  2. Members of SolarBuddy Senior Leadership.
  3. Such other members as appointed by SolarBuddy CEO.

The Committee is charged with the responsibility of reviewing all gifts from individuals that are valued at $10,000 USD or more, any ‘other gifts’, and any plans for accepting cash which is not directly received into SolarBuddy’s bank. The Committee is responsible for properly screening and making recommendations to SolarBuddy CEO about gift acceptance and when appropriate, accepting or rejecting those gifts.

The Committee shall be responsible for determining the following before the gift is accepted:

  1. the identity of a major donor where possible, or the reason for anonymity
  2. market value of the gift in kind
  3. whether gifts in kind will be immediately sold or kept, and if kept for what purpose.
  4. if the donor’s requests and requirements mean the gift is consistent with SolarBuddy’s mission and goals
  5. that due diligence process is in place in terms of transferring, recording and reporting gifts of cash which is not directly banked to SolarBuddy.

The Committee may review any gift made to SolarBuddy at any time, including those that have already been accepted, at the direction of SolarBuddy CEO. In rare circumstances SolarBuddy may deem it necessary to refund gifts because it is in the best interest of SolarBuddy or because the conditions agreed to in accepting a gift cannot or will not be met.

 

Gift Acceptance Committee – Decision Making

All final decisions on the restrictive nature of a gift, and its acceptance or refusal, shall be made by the Committee. In deciding whether to accept or reject a gift the Committee shall: 

  1. review all information it deems necessary to make a final decision including receiving legal advice, and
  2. make all final decisionsby majority vote.

The Committee shall seek the advice of legal counsel in matters relating to acceptance of gifts when appropriate.  Review by counsel is recommended for:

  1. where the gift is property, in-kind or non-traditional,
  2. if it involves or may involve the law of another country
  3. documents naming a SolarBuddy entity as Trustee
  4. transactions with potential conflict of interest that may invoke Australian Tax Office (ATO) or Inland Revenue Service (IRS) sanctions
  5. where the gift is unusual or other instances in which use of counsel is deemed appropriate by the Gift Acceptance Committee or the CEO.

SolarBuddy will inform the donor of circumstances which require it to use legal counsel to assist with a gift, for example to review transactions with potential conflicts of interest or to assess any tax or other legal implications in accepting a gift. The donor may be asked to bear the cost of this tax or legal review.

6. Gift acknowledgement and receipting

Within a reasonable time after receiving a Gift, SolarBuddy shall furnish the applicable donors with

    1. a gift acknowledgement letter, 
    2. a charitable tax receipt will be issued for all eligible donations in accordance with country specific regulations (Australian Tax Office (ATO) or Inland Revenue Service (IRS) requirements) including by using reasonable efforts, the gift date, amount of cash given, or description of property received.

 

Stewardship

Stewardship or the reporting to donors on the impact of their gift is a vitally important part of the responsibility in accepting a gift. Timely acknowledgements will be sent to all donors and, where appropriate, special recognition of certain gifts will be given. This acknowledgement demonstrates SolarBuddy’s commitment to maintaining long term donor relations and maximising the support of the mission.

 

Independent Legal and Tax counsel

SolarBuddy.org Ltd is an Australian registered DGR Type 1 (ABN 56 612 567 825).

SolarBuddy Inc is an USA registered public charity 501(c) (3) (EIN 84 -3937145).

and are entitled to receive income tax deductible gifts and tax-deductible contributions.

SolarBuddy urges all donors before making a gift to seek independent legal, financial and tax advice in matters relating to their gift and the resulting tax and estate planning consequences. SolarBuddy is not able to provide such advice to donors.

 

Changes to Gift Acceptance Policies

These policies and guidelines have been reviewed and accepted by the Gift Acceptance Committee of SolarBuddy. The Gift Acceptance Committee of SolarBuddy must approve any changes to or deviations from these policies.

 

Approved by Simon Doble – Founder & Global CEO
August 2022

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