The start of 2017 has been positive for Bexhill Boxing Club (Bexhill ABC) as the club has started the year as a fully registered charity – a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO).
The club took the decision to become a CIO in consideration of the clubs future – specifically to recognise the club as a legal entity which enables us to enter into contracts as an organisation, and also open up further funding opportunities. The recognition of becoming a charity also implies that we provide charitable services for the good of the community, and have a good level of organisation within the club.
In the future, the club may want to enter into lease agreements to secure property, and continue to enhance our services. Our journey started at the beginning of 2016 as the club decided to form a committee building on firm foundations set by lead coaches Tone Godwin, and Terry Freeman. Godwin and Freeman worked tirelessly to build the club, and its membership base to become recognised on the England Boxing circuit with several competing boxers.
The clubs committee is formed of 5 individuals who are passionate about the club, its members, and the service it provides to the local community. The necessary roles were setup, alongside a few simple processes such as meeting agenda’s, minutes, and account practices. This stabilised the ‘inner workings’ of the club and ensured we had a central group to vote on any decisions required – this relieved pressure on various individuals as all decisions were made democratically.
Once the committee was established the clubs circumstance’s led us to enquire about getting established as a charity. Avoen Perryman (England Boxing – Club Support Officer) travelled to Bexhill to provide the committee with some guidance on the types of charity, pointing us in the right direction. We then took the time to document our club’s constitution which was relatively simple as templates are provided online. Once this was complete, and signed by all trustees / committee members along with a trustee declaration form we took the steps of completing the online charity application.
Our charity application was submitted just before Christmas 2016, and we were an approved charity by mid-January 2017. This included having to resubmit a form online as we forget to mark a simple check box! From setting up our committee to becoming a registered charity has taken us a year. However, in reality this could be achieved in as little as a month if you meet the income levels to register as a charity, and drive forward the creation of your clubs constitution etc.
Now we are registered as a charity we feel that the status of the club is formally recognised and gives us a firmer standing in the community, and sets firm foundations for us to grow. There are also opportunities to seek rates relief / tax benefits once we register the charity with HMRC.
We (Rian Witcomb, Tone Godwin, Terry Freeman, Richard Mabb, & Luke Jones) are proud to be the trustees of the club – but the club would not be what it is without our excellent members, all the parents / carers, and local businesses / organisation that have supported us and created the great community / family spirit that we have. We look forward to many more years at Bexhill Boxing Club (Bexhill ABC) and are sure that our new found charity status will give us the stability we need to continue with our ongoing success.
Well done to all at Bexhill ABC for your efforts and successes.