Since inception, PEACE Punta de Mita has worked diligently to establish a strong governance structure, compromised of financial and operational control systems that manage the receipt of donations and the disbursement funds used to deliver services to the townspeople of Punta de Mita. Meeting this fiduciary responsibility on behalf of all PEACE stakeholders: our honoured donors, employees, charity recipients, and beneficiaries, is something your Board takes very seriously.
Following is an overview of how we manage money:
Each year the PEACE Board announces the opening of its Annual Donation Campaign, normally in May, with follow up commencing in the fall. Funds that are received by PEACE affiliates in the United States and in Canada are recorded by name and contribution amount, with receipts for tax purposes issued directly to donors.
The PEACE Board receives regular reports of the funds received from these affiliates and acknowledges receipt with thank you notes to individual donors. Once receipt is confirmed by the Executive Committee of the Board (the “EC”); these funds are then transferred directly to investment accounts in the Bay of Banderas area, currently with Intercam and ScotiaBank, spread approximately equally. Funds received from Mexican contributors go directly to the investment account held at ScotiaBank. All bank account access is limited and strictly controlled by formal authorizations held at each financial institution.
Investment accounts require dual authorization of the Executive Committee members and investment funds are held in short term money market instruments with the objective of maximizing interest, ensuring adequate liquidity to support the budget and to minimize risk. The principal of PEACE’s external accounting firm, Grupo Cauri, has control over an operating funds account that is designed to hold sufficient funds for 3 months of budgeted expenses.
- Each year, an annual budget is prepared jointly by the executive director and staff controller of PEACE, working alongside Grupo Cauri, and it undergoes intense scrutiny by the Finance Committee and the Chair before it is presented to the Board of Directors for final approval.
- While the executive director has access to a modest petty cash fund, all vendor invoices and monthly payroll requests are submitted by the staff controller to Grupo Cauri which verifies vendors and records all such transactions. This entity then authorizes the bank to make payment directly to the payee.
- Each month the staff controller and Grupo Cauri provide full financial statements, along with executive director commentary, to the Finance Committee and the Chair for review. While the establishment of annual operating budget is a forecast of need, the board recognizes the delivery of PEACE services to the community is dynamic in nature. Explainable variances are discussed and recorded for continuous quality improvement.
In closing and by design, the PEACE Board of Directors plays an interactive roll in both strategy formulation and the control of funds required for its implementation. For security purposes financial information is limited to individual requests, and the authors stand ready to answer your questions.
Thank you for your continued confidence in PEACE Punta de Mita - together we are positively impacting the lives of the nearly 4,000 residents who call Punta de Mita home.