Question :
I want to create a charity side to my business. Step 1 is?

Question submitted 07/05/20 @ 11:30am
Industry: Social Enterprise (Community, Not-for-Profit, For Profit)
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    Hi there – follow this process, why, what, how
    – why do you want to do this – what is the reason behind doing it
    – what – what is it that you could do to fulfill or the options, what are the choices you have
    – how – once you decide on the what, how would you go after this.

    You may decide to give money to other charities or to set up your own charity.

    Explain a bit more if you like.


    Kia ora,

    It is best to first think about what positive contribution you would like to have and determine whether there are organisations already doing that. Could you support them in any way? If there is not, you need to think about how a charitable part of your business would work? Would it benefit from the profit from your business? How would it deliver the positive contribution to the community/environment that fits within it’s charitable purpose? Also, ask yourself why you would need it to be a seperate part? Could you incorporate it within your day-to-day activities?

    If you think that creating a charity is the right approach, I would recommend getting stuck into all of the information available from Charities Services. Check out https://www.charities.govt.nz/ready-to-register/starting-a-new-charity/ to understand the rules and the responsibilities that you must follow to register a charity.

    Ngā mihi nui,



    I think the most important thing is to determine with which charity you want to align, and how that aligns to your business purpose and values. For example if you’re a real estate company it might be a stretch for your customers to understand why you’re aligned with pet rescue, however it might be easier for them to understand
    the connection vs. something like contributing to the prevention of homelessness.

    Once you’ve determine which charity fits with your brand and your company purpose and values, think about how you want to contribute. Will it be a % of your profits, a $ value for every transaction, allowing customers to round up their purchase, or donate after their purchase from your site etc. Quantify what you think the impact you can have will be (ie will this be hundreds or thousands of dollars).

    Once you have that information, I’d do some research and reach out to a few players in the space you’ve chosen as your charity industry of choice. I’d ask them really pointed questions about how they would use your funding. Does it go directly to the cause, or will it be used on administration? What % of charitable donations do they take as administration fees etc. With which other organizations are they affiliated? That will allow you to make an informed decision on the best choice.

    Once you’ve determined the logistics of how you’re going to collect and disperse additional funds to your chosen charity, then I’d recommend a joint public relations plan to announce your partnership. That way you can both leverage each other’s audiences for your respective businesses, and further cement the relationship. This can take many forms, including traditional press media, emails, combined campaigns etc.

    I hope this helps~


    Just to add my recommendation – there are currently 27,000 registered charities in NZ and it’s tough to get your cause out there without a significant marketing budget. It can be administratively heavy to run your own charity and meet your legal obligations. It’s also taking up to 6 months to get new charities registered right now.

    As mentioned above, another option would be to channel your resourcing directly into an already existing charity that matches your values. There are many, many charities who would welcome a partnership. Do your due diligence and check out possibilities on the Charities Register – https://www.register.charities.govt.nz/CharitiesRegister/Search. You can also do an Advanced Search – https://www.register.charities.govt.nz/AdvancedSearch.

    Ka kite


    I’m not an expert, but I’m hesitantly poking my nose into this question as it’s an area I’m passionate about. Louise’s answer is spot on – why not make your desire to do good a pivotably part of your everyday business? Business is a fabulous resource for helping our communities, and it doesn’t have to be through just giving money away.

    The first question I would ask is – how involved do you want to be?

    If you want to do good but not actually be involved as such, then donating to an existing charity maybe the way to go. Remember in can be money or other resources (eg accountants time, staff training, materials etc). Personally I favour developing a close relationship with the recipients and understand what they do. If you are successful at business, just talking to you may be of benefit plus most charities can teach businesses a thing or two.

    If you want to be more involved, awesome. Why not share your passion with your team and harness their skills and knowledge. It improves what you can give – and provides a brilliant vehicle for exciting the people you work with.

    I’ve just published a book on seven businesses strategies for doing good and I’m sure others can to the list.

    Of course there is the old option of setting up a charitable foundation that the business donates to. Trustees can then apply those funds according to its purpose.

    and I simply have to say – good on you! Hope you enjoy the journey.

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