Crossroads PM Inc: charity review

This is a charity review of Crossroads PM Inc (CPM), an organisation that seeks donations online and is a ‘Member Organisation’ of Missions Interlink[1]. (Including the answers to the questions that the Australian charity regulator, the ACNC, suggests that you ask.)

For the last review, see here.

Is it responsive to feedback?

  • I sent them a draft of this review. Like last year, they…did not respond.

Is CPM registered?

  • As a charity, yes.
  • CPM is a New South Wales incorporated association.[2]
  • It holds three business names: Crossroad Bible Institute, Crossroads Prison Ministry Australia, and the one it uses on the website, Crossroads Prison Ministries Australia.
    • It says – ACNC Register – that it is also known by the names Crossroads Prison Ministries, CBI Australia, Crossroad Bible Institute, and Crossroads PM Inc.[3]
  • CPM operates in Australia, per the ACNC Register, throughout Australia.
    • It still doesn’t have the necessary registration to conduct business interstate (an ARBN).
    • It said in the Annual Information Statement (AIS) 2017 that it didn’t intend to fundraise next year, but it forgot that it has an online invitation. This would explain the lack of explanation for the absence of any fundraising licences.

What do they do?

  • See here.
  • CPM operates overseas, per the ACNC Register, in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Tonga.

Do they share the Gospel[4]?

  • Yes

What impact are they having?

  • No information found.

What do they spend outside the costs directly incurred in delivering the above impact, that is, on administration?

  • This is not disclosed, and the expenses are not classified to allow an estimate to be made.

Do they pay their board members?

  • The constitution is silent on paying board members.
  • From the expenses, it appears that no such payment is made.

Can you get a tax deduction?

  • No

Is their online giving secure?

  • PayPal is used, so yes.

Is their reporting up-to-date?

  • Yes (lodged six months after their year-end, two days before the deadline, and three weeks later than last year).
    • But if you are considering a large donation, I would ask for more up-to-date financial information – the accounts are for a year end that is now over six months ago.

Does their reporting comply with the regulator’s requirements?

  • AIS 2017: No
    • Two of the figures under ‘Expenses/Payments’ are incorrect.
    • The association number is incorrect.
    • Online fundraising has not been disclosed.
    • ‘Activities’ is not particularly about 2017.
    • No outcomes are reported.
  • Financial Report 2017: Yes
    • CPM slipped below the threshold for reporting this year.
    • However, it submitted a Report anyway.
    • Unfortunately, the ACNC does not require such Reports to comply with the law (and CPM’s doesn’t).
    • However, their membership of Missions Interlink requires them to “have available for [their] members and supporters a clear and appropriate financial statement which has been approved by its auditor.”
      • If ‘appropriate’ is defined as what professional accountants should do then, like last year, the Report is clearly ‘inappropriate’:
        • One financial statement is missing.
        • Two of the other three financial statements are materially different from what is required by the Accounting Standards.
        • Almost all the usual Notes to the accounts are missing.
      • The auditor has again used the wrong Auditing Standard.

What financial situation was shown by that Report?

  • Surplus as a percentage of revenue decreased dramatically from negative 3% to negative 27%.
    • Despite the significant decline in donations, ‘Salaries’ increased by 124%.
    • Assets now exceed liabilities by only $44K (down from $107K).

What did the auditor say about the last financial statements?

  • The auditor, Troy Vander Noord, Chartered Accountant, gave a ‘clean’ conclusion (it was a review, not an audit).
    • But before you decide how much comfort to take from this conclusion, please re-read the section ‘Financial Report 2017’, above.

If a charity, is their information on the ACNC Register complete/correct?

  • Almost – there’s a name missing and an extra name included under ‘Other Name(s)’.

What choices do you have in how your donation is used?

  • None

Where were your (net) donations sent?

  • Other than all over Australia, CPM operates in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Tonga. The AIS 2017 says that no $12k of grants were made for use in Australia – but this amount matches a line item called ‘South Pacific Expenses’ – and none overseas. There is no disclosure beyond this.

Who are the people controlling the organisation?

  • Not shown on the website, but per the ACNC Register (under ‘Responsible Persons’) they are:
  • The committee is three short of the number required by the constitution.
  • Although the guarantee by the members in the case of a winding up of the association is described in the Notes – an unusual inclusion for an association – the number of members is not mentioned. We cannot therefore assess the accountability from this quarter.

To whom is CPM accountable?

  • Not claimed, but CPM is a member of Missions Interlink.
    • For one opinion on the strength of this accountability, see the section Activities in this review.
  • CPM is also accountable to the ACNC.
  • And to the New South Wales regulator of incorporated associations.

 

 

  1. Missions Interlink have an old website address for CPM.
  2. But still, over a year after the change, in its old name, CBI Australia Inc.
  3. The last one is its legal name (and therefore an incorrect inclusion), two are two of the three business names it holds, and three are unregistered.
  4. Good living and social concern are important [to the cause of evangelism], but they are not uniquely Christian graces…I’ve met a lot of fine Hindus, Muslims and atheists. Just living the life is not going to bring someone to Christ. There is much more to it than that. We must help people, certainly, but we must also share with them why we are motivated to do so. We must stand against injustice, poverty and need, but we must at the same time point to the One who brings justice and who can meet the deepest need. Until they know our reasons, how can they come to know our Lord?” [Dan Armstrong, the Fifth Gospel: The Gospel According to You, Anzea Books, pp. 13-14.

 

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