Duties of a Charity Treasurer

Written by angus koolbreeze
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Duties of a Charity Treasurer
Accountants for charities have a heavy responsibility to the board. They must keep the charity fiscally honest. (Accounting image by Guitar75 from Fotolia.com)

The responsibilities of a treasurer are numerous, especially in a non-profit organisation such as a charity. In such a setting, the founder and chief executive are not the people to whom you are primarily responsible, it is the Internal Revenue Service and the people whom the charity serves. As a treasurer you must be responsible when it comes to money.

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Bookkeeping

You must have excellent accountancy skills. According to the Voluntary Arts Network, you must be able to keep accurate records of how much money has come into the charity, how much has flowed out, and for what the money was spent. Keep your receipts. Also keep track of dates when someone donated money to your charity, or when you or someone else bought something in the name of the charity. You may keep a manual checkbook, but today computer programs exist that may make this task easier for you.

Oversight

According to the Centre for Voluntary Sector Research and Development, another responsibility you have as a charitable organisation's treasurer is to oversee the financial matters of the organisation. You are to develop, implement and enforce financial policies that are beneficial to the organisation. For that you are to be familiar with the fundraising laws of the land, including 501c3 information and associated paperwork. You are recruit people whom you can trust to aid you in financial endeavours.

Planning and Budgeting

As treasurer you're responsible for bringing to the board a budget that they will approve. According to the Voluntary Arts Network, you are to project the needs of the organisation and the monies necessary to meet those needs. You must stay abreast of actual income and expenditure so that you will be able to identify cash problems well before they materialise.

Communicate with Staff

According to the Centre for Voluntary Sector Research and Development, you are responsible for keeping the financial staff abreast of the financial issues relating to the charity as a whole. You must keep them abreast of what the policies and procedures are, as well as specific individual responsibilities among the staff members. As they change, you are the one responsible for communicating that shift.

Reporting

In the event of an audit, you are the one who must be ready to give a full account to the IRS about monies that you have spent, and why and how you as an organisation spent it. You must be able to account for irregularities in the account when the ledger doesn't quite add up. You must be able to present evidence that you are telling the truth.

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