A General Meeting of DSMG on September 28 endorsed a change to the company constitution to support our efforts to secure Deductible Gift Recipient status as a Cultural Organisation.
For some time, DSMG has been pursuing DGR registration but the bureaucratic hurdles have been quite challenging. DGR status allows donations over $2 to be tax deductible for donors and DGR registration will allow the company to pursue fundraising beyond government grants.
Earlier this year, the company established the BNI Cultural Purposes Fund as a separate account that will be the company's public fund to receive DGR contributions and hold them separate from our general operating funds.
The company's key priorities integrate Caring for Dharug Country, Culture and Community, but the requirements for DGR registration require quite different things for public benevolent, environmental, arts and cultural, educational and other sorts of organisations. After much discussion (and exploration of the various guidelines and state and federal government requirements, we decided to register first as a Cultural Organisation in NSW. In time we hope to also pursue registration of a BNI Dharug Environmental Purposes Fund and a BNI Dharug Building Fund - but given the complexities both will be some time in the future.
So, the focus of our Public Fund and the activities we aim to support through this have now been included in our revised company constitution. Our cultural purpose is now defined as follows:
The company operates as a Cultural Organisation principally through the promotion, protection, recognition and advancement of Dharug culture through visual, performing and community arts, film, literature, craft, Dharug language, and fostering connection with and belonging to Dharug Nura through ceremony and other activities that promote social well-being, economic opportunity and environmental improvement.
We will develop and deliver programs and activities that will support, sponsor and promote:
performances, exhibitions and other Dharug Arts and Cultural activities on the BNI;
artists, performers and individuals through awards, prizes and scholarships to assist the production works or development of public understanding of Dharug Arts and Culture and the BNI;
activities in literature, music, performing arts, visual arts, crafts, design, film, video, television, radio, community arts, Dharug language or movable cultural heritage through activities on or associated with the BNI;
Dharug Arts, Cultural and Ceremonial activities on the BNI.
We will also pursue collaboration with other cultural organisations including local government authorities, museums, galleries and corporations to support, sponsor or promote Dharug Arts and Culture and welcome proposals and ideas from members, partners and the wider community.
The Board thanks members who provided unanimous support for this initiative and we will update the website as our applications for DGR slowly negotiate their way through the bureaucratic maze that we have ventured into. Once tax deductibility for donations is available, we will be sure to let you all know and will welcome your further contributions.
Any enquiries can be directed to Richie Howitt, Director-Finance via the DSMG email - firstname.lastname@example.org
A copy of the amended constitution is available here