Advisory Board for Student Organization Funding Policy

Center for Social Justice Advisory Board for Student Organizations Funding Policies

All of these policies shall be consistently followed by the Center for Social Justice Advisory Board for Student Organizations (CSJ ABSO), contingent on rare variances in individual event and overall budget approval.

General Financial and Budget Policies

I. Terms Defined
CSJ​: Georgetown University’s Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching & Service

CSJ ABSO​: The Center for Social Justice’s Advisory Board for Student Organizations

CSJ Mission Statement: “​In order to advance justice and the common good, CSJ promotes and integrates community-based research, teaching and service by collaborating with diverse partners and communities​.”

ABSO General Fund​: The account where all ABSO funding resides

CSJ Student Organizations: Student organizations that are housed under CSJ ABSO

Ad Hoc Funding Requests​: Funding requests submitted to ABSO during the academic year for funds not already appropriated to an organization

Semester: The period of time indicated by the University Registrar during which classes are in session for a particular academic period

II. Ad Hoc Funding & Event Approval Requests

All additional funding and event approval requests shall be submitted to CSJ ABSO at least two (2) weeks before an event’s commencement. Student Organization leadership must consult their ABSO advisor prior to submitting an ad hoc funding request. Student organizations shall not use funds not appropriated for their event by ABSO, and ABSO shall not consider retroactive funding requests. All events put on by CSJ Student Organizations shall be approved by ABSO before those events take place, regardless of whether or not the event requires funding.

All CSJ Student Organizations shall endeavor to list all their anticipated events, and request the necessary funds for those events, in their fiscal year budget proposal. If ABSO determines that a student organization consistently adds new events, or consistently requests new funds, that had not been included in its fiscal year budget, ABSO reserves the right to deny funding requests.

1. CSJ ABSO shall track the total sum of monies requested by Ad Hoc Funding Requests by each student organization to inform CSJ ABSO’s compliance with this provision.

III. Cost Centers​
CSJ student organizations have “access to benefits” as defined by University Policy, and shall be provided a GMS Cost Center for their appropriated funds. Any remaining funds in a student organization’s GMS cost center at the end of each fiscal year shall revert back to the CSJ ABSO General Fund.

IV. Semester Programming

CSJ ABSO only sponsors programming by CSJ Student Organizations during each Fall and Spring semester of each academic year.

Programming is permitted during study days only if the program is classified as a study break. Study breaks are defined as being a maximum of one and a half hours and must not place any requirements on students or significant planning.

No programming of any kind is permitted during Final Exams.

V. Vans & Transportation Costs

Van hours for CSJ vans may be requested by CSJ Student Organizations, both during the initial fiscal year budgeting process as well as through Ad Hoc Funding Requests during the academic year.
Non-CSJ sponsored organizations may request a van at a rate of $15 per hour with a $15 reservation fee.

All individuals and CSJ Student Organizations using CSJ vans shall be subject to fines as articulated in the van policies and procedures document.
CSJ organizations shall have priority over non-CSJ organizations for renting vans.

CSJ ABSO Van Payment to the CSJ

CSJ ABSO pays a lump sum as determined by the CSJ and CSJ ABSO at the beginning of the fiscal year for CSJ Student Orgnizations to have unlimited usage of CSJ vans.

CSJ ABSO requests a report from the CSJ at the end of the fiscal year which shall detail the number of van hours used by CSJ ABSO Student Organizations.

ABSO encourages all Student Organizations to utilize CSJ-owned vans as a resource. In the event that a Student Organization requires transportation in order to carry out programming that directly serves their mission but is unable to utilize CSJ vans for lack of having an authorized driver, ABSO will consider funding transportation costs under extenuating circumstances.

VI. Line Item Changes

CSJ ABSO Student Advisors may approve a line item change to their assigned CSJ Student Organization’s budgets if that line item change is less than or equal to $500. If, over the course of an academic year, a Student Organization requests more than $500 to be moved in line-item changes, approval by the Board must be sought at a meeting. The reallocated funds must be used for a previously approved event. No new events may be funded with a line item change without the vote of CSJ ABSO. Advisors shall notify ABSO of changes made to their student organizations’ budgets at the next ABSO meeting. For line-item changes over $500, CSJ Student Organizations must submit a request to ABSO for consideration.

VII. Supplies

General offices supplies shall be available in the CSJ free of charge for student organizations.

Funding of Supplies

1. All efforts shall be made by organizations to have supplies donated. If the supplies cannot be donated, then the organization shall use the CSJ’s Staples discount account.

2. Ordering particular office supplies requires a detailed explanation in the budget or Ad Hoc Funding Request of how the supplies will directly benefit the organization’s activities.

3. “Reusable office supplies,” such as calculators and dictionaries, shall only be funded a maximum of once every three years per organization. If an organization has broken the supplies they purchased with CSJ ABSO funding, the organization may submit an independent funding request to replace those supplies, detailing exactly how the products were broken and what steps they intend to take as not to break future supplies. CSJ ABSO then may approve funding for those supplies.

4. Books and videos are kept in the Center for Social Justice and shall be available to all service organizations.

   a) If an organization seeks to utilize books and videos for their service, the organization shall first check the CSJ library to see if those supplies are already available to use.

   b) If an organization cannot find those supplies, then the organization may request funding to purchase books and videos.

   c) After their use, the books and videos shall be donated to the communities served by the organization or to the CSJ to expand the library.

5. CSJ ABSO shall not fund the purchase of t-shirts for internal member use. CSJ ABSO may loan funding for t-shirts for the purposes of fundraising, either for the organization’s own benefit in the advancement of the organization’s social justice mission, or for their national chapter, or for t-shirts to be worn at a fundraising event. CSJ ABSO will consider funding t-shirts for community members on a case-by-case basis.

VIII. Recruitment

Food:​ A maximum of $200 total can be allocated per year for recruitment food including for CAB Fair, as well as other recruitment activities.

Flyers:​ Student organizations have access to the copier machine in the CSJ. Student organizations shall adhere to all University and any other applicable flyering guidelines. Black-and-white printing is free up to 400 pages per month for all organizations. Funding for color printing shall be considered on a case-by-case basis with sufficient reason as to why color is necessary. All flyers shall include:

1. A statement that the event is sponsored by the Center for Social Justice by including either:

a) “Sponsored by the Center for Social Justice” on the flyer, or

b) Including the CSJ logo

2. A statement that the event shall accommodate accessibility requests when made in a timely manner, by including the following:

a) “Accommodation requests should be made by [specific date] at csj.georgetown.edu/ar. A good faith effort will be made to fulfill requests made after (specific date).”

Banners: ​CSJ ABSO shall fund a new banner every 3 years, upon the request of a student organization, if their banner is in disrepair, or if the organization has changed its logo. Lost banners during transition or over the summer shall not be replaced. CSJ ABSO shall fund the purchase of a banner up to $105 (based on the price of a full color 3’ x 6’ vinyl banner from banners.com with reinforced hemming and reinforced corners – $92.51 subtotal + $11.75 shipping = $104.26).

3. Organizations may request funding for more than one banner, as long as the banners are to serve different purposes. CSJ ABSO may fund these requests if there is clear need, and the banner clearly furthers the organization’s social justice mission.

IX. Training Activities
Defined: ​Any event held for the purposes of training organization members in any skills necessary for the completion of the organization’s social justice mission.
CSJ ABSO shall fund no more than 4 training events within a fiscal year.
CSJ ABSO encourages organizations to utilize free workshops and training offered throughout the year by the CSJ.
If a CSJ organization meets the aforementioned requirements, the training shall receive funding based on the funding section provided in Section XII.

X. Retreats
Defined: ​A retreat is when the members of an organization come together to reflect upon the organization’s successes, as well as ways to improve their social justice advocacy.
These retreats shall be open to the full membership of an organization, unless CSJ ABSO is offered sufficient reason to limit the equal participation of the membership. To qualify for retreat funding, a CSJ Student Organization shall submit an agenda to CSJ ABSO, after which CSJ ABSO shall approve the event as long as:

1. The retreat does not violate the retreat cap per fiscal year; and

2. The retreat has a clear agenda that specifically demonstrates its focus on reflecting upon and improving the advocacy of the organization.

CSJ ABSO shall fund no more than two such activities within a fiscal year. If a CSJ Student Organization meets the aforementioned requirements, the retreat shall receive funding based on the funding section provided in Section XII.

XI. Chapter Dues

ABSO shall not fund chapter dues for individual members of a student organization. If a parent organization of a student organization requires a membership fee that is integral for the student organization to successfully carry-out its mission, CSJ ABSO will consider funding such a fee on a case-by-case basis.

XII. Provisions by Which Organizations May Request Funding for Food

A. All listed dollar amounts are guidelines and do not guarantee that all requests will be funded at this maximum rate. All requests require a detailed explanation of how food is instrumental in reaching the goals of the proposed activity/event.

B. General Body Meetings

1. CSJ ABSO shall only fund food at General Body Meetings for two General Body Meetings per semester.

2. CSJ ABSO shall fund a maximum of $2 per person per General Body Meeting.

C. Trainings

1. For trainings less than 3 hours, CSJ ABSO shall fund no more than $2 per person.

2. For trainings lasting 3 or more hours, CSJ ABSO shall fund no more than $4 per person.

D. Food in Group Bonding Activities

1. CSJ ABSO shall fund food for events​ without a service or reflection element​ for the purposes of student organization bonding and cohesion. Organizations shall only request funding under this provision once a semester.

2. Funding specifics:

   a) A maximum of $6 per person shall be appropriated

   b) Student organizations shall be encouraged to investigate:

        i. Co-sponsorships

        ii. Alternatives to catering such as home cooking or purchases from warehouses

E. Food for Formal Events & Events with Community Members

1. CSJ ABSO shall fund no more than $8/person expected to attend a formal event or an event with community members. The organization requesting funding for an event shall provide CSJ ABSO reasonable documentation indicating the expected attendance.

a. Student organizations shall be encouraged to investigate.

i. Co-sponsorships

ii. Alternatives to catering such as home cooking or purchases from warehouses.

2. A maximum of 2 formal events will be funded by ABSO per semester.

F. Food for Student Organization Programming

1. CSJ ABSO will consider funding food for on-going programming at the rate of $4 per person per programming event.

G. Food for Retreats

1. CSJ ABSO will consider funding a maximum of $6 per person for retreat events.

2. Student organizations shall be encouraged to investigate:

a. Co-sponsorships

b. Alternatives to catering such as home cooking or purchases from warehouses

XIII. Special Events With Speakers

CSJ ABSO shall fund up to $300 per speaker for costs including travel, hotel, food, honoraria, etc. with detailed explanation as to why this speaker directly furthers the organization’s mission. 

XIV. On-Campus Conference Attendance

1. CSJ ABSO will consider funding up to $75 per person in registration fees to fund the attendance of ABSO student organizations’ members to Georgetown University conferences.

2. CSJ ABSO will not fund food for conference attendance.

XV. ​Off-Campus Conference Attendance
H. CSJ ABSO requires some financial contribution to the total cost of the conference attendance be it through fundraising or seeking co-sponsorships. ABSO will consider funding up to 2/3 of the total cost of Conference Attendance, including Travel, Registration, and Lodging.

   1. Travel: ​CSJ ABSO asks that students search well in advance for travel arrangements to ensure the best price.

   2. Registration: ​CSJ ABSO will consider funding up to 2/3 of registration costs.

   3. Participants: ​No firm limits are set regarding who or how many should attend.

   4. Food: ​CSJ ABSO will consider funding up to a maximum of $12 per person per day if food is not included in the registration fee or conference accommodations.

   5. Lodging:​ CSJ ABSO asks that students search well in advance for adequate but not excessive lodging to ensure reasonable pricing.

   6. Funding for conference attendance depends on the student organization demonstrating the values of the conference for the organization, clients, and/or campus community. A written report must be submitted to the organization’s CSJ ABSO student advisor to be reported on in the minutes.

XVI. ​Fundraising Budget Plan Policies

I. ABSO-allocated funds cannot be directly donated to an external non-Georgetown organization

J. All fundraising dollars (either cash or checks) must be dropped off at the CSJ dropbox located outside of GUPD immediately after the event or sales. In accordance with Georgetown University policy, no personal accounts shall be used to deposit student organization funds. Fundraising proceeds are deposited by CSJ into the organization’s’ GMS cost center with the University. This includes the use of mobile payment services including but not limited to Venmo, Square, or GoFundMe.

K. When reviewing requests, ABSO will consider the projected funding plan and the amount the fundraiser expects to raise and donate.

L. Fundraising Programming

1. All fundraising requests must provide a fundraising plan, including the marketing plan, total costs of the event, estimated revenue, estimated profit (costs minus the total expected revenue), and detailed information about the event’s profits in the past. All fundraising programming must include an awareness component in which the student organization distributes information about their cause.

2. Fundraising only Events

a. ABSO shall provide loans (funding that must be paid back to ABSO) for fundraising events and shall not make donations towards the cost of the event.

b. To be considered for loans, the student organization must plan to achieve percentage profit greater or equal to 15%, where profit is defined as total revenue less total cost. The event’s prior success and the organization’s history of loans will be taken into account along with their fundraising plan in evaluating their loan request.

3. Fundraising and Advocacy Events:

a. In order to support the advocacy component of fundraising events, ABSO may underwrite a maximum of 10% of the total cost of fundraising and advocacy events with a cap of $150. To be considered for an underwrite, student organizations will need to submit a detailed advocacy plan. This underwrite is not a loan; ABSO does not expect it to be paid back.

b. Loans will be available for covering the cost of the rest of the event; however, the loan must be paid back in full.

c. To be considered for loans and for funding, the student organization must plan to achieve percentage profit greater or equal to 15%, where profit is defined as total revenue/total cost

i. The event’s prior success and the organization’s history of loans will be taken into account along with their fundraising plan in evaluating their loan request.

d. Advocacy, as distinct from awareness, includes an action component. An advocacy event provides students with clear information on how they can make a difference in addition to providing basic information about the cause. Advocacy should inspire dialogue, not simply be distribution of information.

4. Sales Policy

a. If items such as T-shirts, other apparel, merchandise, or food are sold to raise funds and awareness, the CSJ ABSO will consider making a loan to the student organization. The projected funding plan that sets a goal for the amount the student organization is expecting to raise and donate will be taken into consideration.

XVII. ​Loans​

ABSO may provide limited loans for fundraising events and merchandise sales, evaluated on past event success and projected profit.

M. Fundraising Event Loans:​ ABSO will provide loans to organizations for fundraising events, subject to ABSO’s funding availability and provisions outlined in Section XIV. The organization and ABSO will assign a due date for the loan to be paid back in full upon receiving the loan. By the loan’s due date, the organization must also fill out and submit an event evaluation form to ABSO’s Treasurer.

N. Merchandise Sales Loans:​ ABSO will loan no more than $1000 to an organization at a time for merchandise sales, subject to ABSO’s funding availability and provisions outlined in Section XIV. The loan must be paid back in full before the student organization may request another merchandise sales loan. The organization and ABSO will assign a due date for the loan to be paid back in full upon receiving the loan. By the loan due date, the organization must also fill out and submit a merchandise sales evaluation form to ABSO’s treasurer.

O. Loan Requirements:​ ABSO and each student organization will work together to assign a deadline for the loan to be paid back in full. Should the student organization fail to pay back the loan in full, they will be expected to pay back the remaining money by the end of the next fiscal year. The organization can earn back the money owed ABSO by hosting a more successful event. They have until one year after the loan due date to pay back the loan. CSJ Student Organizations who fail to pay back their loan by the due date are encouraged to work with their student advisor.

Failure to pay back the loan a year after the loan due date will result in severe loan restrictions for the defaulting student organization. The student organization may also be asked to discontinue some of their more costly events.

XVIII. Folding Organizations

P. Upon folding, any additional funds remaining in a student organization’s GMS account shall revert back to the CSJ ABSO General Fund. Any additional materials (books, sports equipment, office supplies, etc.) belonging to the student organization shall be donated to the CSJ.

Revised April 3rd, 2018
CSJ ABSO Policy Review Committee