Tax payers that donate qualify for a tax deduction

Not everyone knows that if you have donated an amount to a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) and you are a tax payer then you qualify for a tax deduction.

 As an approved PBO Rape Crisis has the privilege and responsibility of spending public funds, which we derive from donations and from grants. In order to maintain our registration as a PBO we must of course ensure that we continue to comply with relevant legislation throughout our existence. Our annual income tax return enables the South African Revenue Service (SARS) to assess whether we are operating within the prescribed limits of the approval we have been granted.

 Rape Crisis plays a significant role in society as we take a shared responsibility with the South African Government for the social and development needs of rape survivors, their families and people affected by the trauma of someone close to them.

 Since the South African Government has recognised that Rape Crisis is dependent upon the generosity of the public, and, to encourage that generosity, it has provided a tax deduction for any donations made by a taxpayer.

 Having made a bona fide donation in cash or of property in kind to Rape Crisis as a Section 18A – approved organisation, you are entitled to a deduction from your taxable income if the donation is supported by the necessary section 18A receipt issued by our finance and administration manager.

 Should you have made a donation to us and you require an 18A certificate or receipt please write to Charlene Whittern on charlene@rapecrisis.org.za and include the following details:

  • Your name and surname
  • Your physical address
  • The amount you donated (or the value of the in kind goods you donated)
  • The date on which you sent the donation

She will then confirm your donation and send you the certificate via email as an attachment.

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Rape Crisis Finance Manager, Charlene Whittern, hard at work sending 18A certificates to donors.

Should you still wish to donate to Rape Crisis before the end of the financial year and thus qualify for a tax deduction please click here. You will be part of the work we do seeking justice for rape survivors, supporting their recovery and making sure the very same government you pay your taxes to rolls out ten new specialised sexual offences courts for hearing rape cases every year.

 Thank you for everything you have done to help us make sure that rape survivors make their own journey, in their own way and at their own pace towards recovery or along the road to justice, and for making sure that our government shares the responsibility for supporting them on that journey with us.

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SONA Schmona and Other Things in February

Nearing the end of February, we have a lot to reflect on, chew on and (eventually) spit out.  Both the State of the Nation Address (SONA) by our President, Jacob Zuma, as well as the Budget Speech by Pravin Gordhan, our Minister of Finance, left a bitter taste in my mouth.

During SONA, our country’s President aims to convey to everyone in South Africa what the state of this nation actually is. This event also marks the opening of Parliament for the year and, say what you want, it is exciting to see Parliament in full cry. For some general reasons to care about the SONA address, please have a look at the Activate! Change Driver’s Network page.  The issues that the President mentions and highlights during this address, will be the issues that get special attention from government in the coming year. As coordinator of the Rape Survivors’ Justice Campaign, I was particularly interested to hear the President’s expressed views on gender based violence, services for survivors of sexual offences and, of course, the importance of the rollout of sexual offences courts. It is for this very reason that I noted the President’s very loud silence on all of the aforementioned.

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The Rape Survivors’ Justice Campaign protested outside the Athlone and Khayelitsha Magistrate’s Courts during 16 Days of Activism to demand that all rape survivors have access to  Sexual Offences Courts. (Pic: Alexa Sedgwick)

With great hope I looked forward to the Budget Speech presented by Minister Gordhan a couple of days ago. His speech is important for two reasons. Firstly, he tells the country where government will get its money from and secondly, he tells us what the government’s spending priorities will be for the coming year. In order to fund the rollout of sexual offences courts, government would have to allocate a significant budget to the relevant departments to make courts with specialised services, personnel and infrastructure a reality for all survivors of sexual offences. Again there was no mention at all of the importance of support to survivors or the rollout of specialised courts to deal with sexual offences. This tells me that the chances are very slim that there will be an increased budget allocated to the rollout of sexual offences courts or the provision of psycho-social support to survivors.

Although the Department of Justice has, in 2013 already, promised to roll out sexual offences courts, we must not get disheartened when we realise that these issues are still very low on government’s current list of priorities. This situation provides a great opportunity for the Rape Survivors’ Justice Campaign, together with our partners and communities, to continue to lobby and advocate for the rollout of sexual offences courts to make sure that all survivors of sexual offences have access to survivor-centred justice.

SONA and the Budget Speech have again shown us that government is so preoccupied with other pressing concerns that it is a massive endeavour to shift their attention to sexual offences. However, when you follow us on Facebook, you help us sweeten the bitter taste that these two speeches have left in all our mouths. If we lobby and advocate strategically over the course of this year, who knows what will happen in #SONA2018…?

 

 

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Jeanne Bodenstein

Jeanne is the Advocacy Coordinator at the Rape Crisis Cape Town Trust and heads the Rape Survivors’ Justice Campaign. She likes wine, pizza and recently started growing herbs.

Meet our new Thuthuzela Coordinator

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My name is Nomnqweno Nomxhego-Gqada and I’m 35 years old.  I obtained my Bachelor of Social Work at the University of the Western Cape.

I’m a humble, goal-oriented and very persistent person.  When I was 18 years old, I joined Rape Crisis as a counselling volunteer.  Back then my interest was stirred by the lack of knowledge around the issues of gender based violence in my community, especially from young girls.  This encouraged me to get involved and make them aware of the issue while also imparting knowledge of available services around Khayelitsha.

My role as the new TCC coordinator is to lead and manage the Thuthuzela Care Centres’ counselling service team to ensure delivery of high quality counselling services to rape survivors. The three sites are situated in Heideveld CHC, Victoria Hospital and Karl Bremmer Hospital.

TCC’s are important in providing improved services to rape survivors both prior to entering and within the Criminal Justice System in order to minimise secondary victimisation and increase the effectiveness of trials so that conviction rates are increased.

With my team, we will provide a high quality service to reduce trauma experienced by rape survivors, and encourage them to report rape incidents.

My goal for the year is to provide a space for professional growth within the TCC team.

I can’t really pin point any challenges for now but my approach will be taking each one as it arises.

To someone who wants to make a difference, I would say “start small”.  It’s the smallest things that make a difference in a person’s life.  You don’t need to have money to make a difference, find a cause that shares your interests and volunteer.

Welcome to the team, Nomnqweno!