Volunteer Types: Accounting and Finance, Board Leadership
Organization types: Community and Social Services, Culture and Heritage, Education, Health and Diseases, Religion Related, Senior Citizens
Ongoing (more than a year)
Application Deadline: April 15, 2024
Posted on:

Ottawa Friends of Tibet (OFT) is a small Canadian charity whose mission is to serve disadvantaged Tibetan children, men and women in India, Nepal and elsewhere, and to increase public awareness and appreciation of Tibetan culture in Canada. OFT is entirely run by a volunteer Board and a cadre of members and volunteers who support the organization. Volunteers currently provide treasury and secretarial functions, event organization, communications, and fundraising.

The Treasurer is an officer and member of the Ottawa Friends of Tibet Board of Directors. The Treasurer reports to the Board and is responsible for bookkeeping, accounting, banking, investments, budgeting and financial reporting, including to the Canada Revenue Agency. In particular, the treasurer is responsible for:

Administration and Bookkeeping
● Offline management and archiving of all financial files according to Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) guidelines, in digital and/or hard copy formats
● Routine back-up of all financial files
● Maintenance of an up-to-date record of accounts and passwords
● Maintenance of the CanadaHelps DMS-based database of donors and supporters (responsibility shared with the Secretary)
● Maintenance of finance-related information in the OFT profile and in OFT campaigns on the CanadaHelps website

● Accounting for all income via the DMS or other sources (e.g., donations via other registered charities, personal donations, event sales) and expenditure (e.g., fundraising expenses, storage fees). This is largely done manually in the Master E-Ledger, an Excel-based system that automatically classifies by CRA line items, for income tax purposes.
● Manually updating the DMS with donations that come in outside of the DMS mechanism (e.g., by check, cash, e-transfer, or at events)
● Routine payment of all invoices, refunds
● Routine monitoring of the DMS database to ensure that tax receipts are being automatically and correctly issued.
● Transferring project contributions annually, and tracking receipts
● Routine monitoring of the bank account

Budgeting, Analysis and Reporting
● Making sense of financial data and sharing analysis and recommendations with the board for the purpose of decision-making re policy, investment, etc.
● Following an annual strategic planning session, preparation of an annual budget for Board approval
● Preparation of semi-annual and annual Actuals-to-Budget reports
● Preparation of fundraising campaign budgets, and reporting against them
● Annual filing to Corporations Canada
● Preparation and submission of annual tax return to the CRA
● HST and GST Returns

Management of Investments
● In collaboration with OFT’s President and its investment advisor, track OFT’s investments and make recommendations to the Board re investments and re-investments.
● Liaising with the investment advisor to effect the board’s decisions.

OFT is in the process of adopting and transitioning to the CanadaHelps donor management system (DMS), a data-based system for tracking income and tax receipting. The Treasurer will be responsible for managing and communicating this transition. The finance-related transition to the DMS is largely done, and all tax receipts are currently being issued in real time by the DMS.

Several challenges remain:
● Only the current Treasurer has taken part in the DMS onboarding, or been orientated to the various CanadaHelps tools and functions, e.g., the events page, participation in industry-wide fundraising events such as Giving Tuesday, training resources, communications functions. Once the new Treasurer has been trained, s/he will need to support other members of the board to adopt and use the technology.
● The OFT Master E-Ledger needs to be simplified and adapted to better couple with the DMS database. If this could be done by transitioning to Quickbooks or another d-based software, all the better.
● Setting up of DMS-based communications & marketing tools
● Defining DMS-generated financial reports that effectively capture and link financial information to reports to the Board and to the CRA.
● Tracking key metrics, such as current stewardship practices or the effectiveness of fundraising strategies.

How will this opportunity benefit the volunteer?
A retired person would benefit by keeping active intellectually, and by introduction to a Board and community of non-political supporters of the Tibetan cause -- some Tibetan, some not; some Buddhist, some not. A graduate student or recent graduate in accounting, international development or non-profit finance would gain valuable experience as treasurer in the not-for-profit sector at the same time as they contribute to a worthy cause.
How will the organization benefit?
The organization's board members -- and by extension, the organization's work -- will benefit from automation, financial analysis, and capacity building in the areas of accounting, bookkeeping and financial reporting.
Volunteer location:
400 Piccadilly Ave N


Jude Rand
@Ottawa Friends of Tibet
Time it will take to contact applicants:


This position would be great for: Adults, Newcomers to Canada, Seniors (65+), Young Adults (19-24)
Number of Positions Available: 1
Good for people interested in: Accounting and Finance, Board Leadership
You will be helping with: Children (0-10 years), Disadvantaged, Persons new to Canada, Seniors, Youth (11-15 years), Youth (16-18 years), Youth (19-24 years)

Volunteer Considerations

  • This position can accommodate persons with a disability
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