Accountable: money management for community-led groups

Our Accountable service enables groups with no bank account to easily and transparently manage their incomings and outgoings.

Managing money for informal groups can quickly become an admin headache.  Most don’t have the legal status needed to open a bank account, but relying on personal accounts isn’t a long term solution.

Using Accountable gives the safety and transparency of a formal bank account, without the need to legally register as a business or charity. Groups can hold their funds in our business bank account, and use the accompanying platform to clearly see and control what’s coming in and out.

Groups stay in total control of how and when money is spent and can share responsibility for signing off costs amongst each other, while we handle the time consuming accounting tasks, like bank transfers.  

After years working with grassroots groups and as an incubator for fledgling social movements we know this service can provide the strong foundation needed to get going and keep going.

You can read about the impact Accountable has had so for in our report, Mutual Money: How innovation enabled community-led COVID-19 responses.

 

 

“I cannot praise the Accountable service enough. In a few quick, easy steps, we got the ability to fundraise and pay expenses – it has made all the difference in this crisis. No one has had any problems using the platform. I don’t know how we would have kept on going without it.” Felix, Oxford Mutual Aid

Useful resources:

  • FAQs will give you a good overview of what’s involved
  • You’ll need three people to become ‘administrators’. More info on that here.
  • You’ll need to agree an ‘expenses policy’ with your group. This is what you will and won’t spend money on.  Read some guidance here.
  • Making collective decisions in newly formed groups can be a challenge, read some top tips here

Getting started

Simply click ‘apply’ on our host page to get started right away, and follow the simple steps to register your group’s account. 

Want to find out more first? Read on here, or email us on accountable@thesocialchangeagency.org

Who are we and why are we doing this? 

The Social Change Agency is a registered B Corp business that has been supporting people-powered networks and grassroots groups since 2013. We know from experience the challenges that come with collectively managing money and this platform is hands down the best we’ve seen for doing it transparently.

When we saw the amazing community response to the current pandemic we scaled up the service so we could quickly support mutual aid groups to have as much impact as possible, but any informal group needing to handle money could benefit.  

Our work on this project has been generously supported by the Lankelly Chase Foundation, the Changing Ideas Foundation, Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Innovate UK.

“It has enabled us to minimise the handling of cash. Our volunteers pay for groceries, we reimburse them via online banking, and the resident reimburses us. This really helps to limit the threat of passing the virus to the vulnerable people we’re helping. It took a matter of days and one phone call for us to be up and running.” Jodie, Kensington Mutual Aid Area 3

“Using the platform streamlined all the information and meant that we didn’t have to set up our own bank account. It’s also great having all the transactions public.” Seth, Goose Green Solidarity Fund