Charity issues

JET: Nail-biting times for Sharief – can they keep paying his £60k pa rent?

6X4A2937“JET’s survival could only be secured by remarkable and individual actions…..This is particularly true of the Sharief family who have donated £39,600 over the last 3 years to JET” (Quote from JET’S 2015 Accounts)

What JET’s 2015 Accounts fail to so say is that during this period the Sharief family charged £180,000 in rent (for the property on Normanton Road which was improved substantially by £400k of taxpayer’s money), plus the undisclosed salaries of the Sharief family. Or that in the last 9 years, they have been paid rent in excess of £0.5 million.

JET’s 2015 year end accounts have just been published and continue to provide an insight into this most infamous of charities.

JET, stands for Jobs, Education and Training, but in their annual report there is no statement as to

  • how many jobs they have secured,
  • how many people have received education and training, or
  • any indication of the sense of benefit that the public has received from JET
  • no statistics on the ethnic split of their clients – they are always keen to state that they supply services to “180 different nationalities”

JET is meticulous in publicising the numbers of people who have passed through their front door.  In 2014, just over 32000 people signed JET’s reception book – that’s 1 every 3 minutes! ( 7 hours a day, 5 days a week, 50 weeks a year).  That number would be relevant if the purpose of the charity was to maximise the number of people passing through the front door. This speaks volumes about JET’s focus and priority. Any person who casually observes JET’s reception can tell that this number is massively overstated.

JET boasts “ …as the financials confirm it was our busiest project year ever”.  What it means is that the funding income is higher than previous years by around £50k – up to a staggering £359k

This increment can be accounted for by 1 transaction. The final £64k of the now infamous £118k contract from Derby City Council. A contract that only engaged 200 people ( and we don’t know if they were unique people, or existing regular visitors covered by other funding), and only 29 of them found employment. A mere “drop in the ocean” when you are processing 32000 visitors a year!

So, in JET’s world – busy-ness is characterised by business, not by the numbers of people who they have actually helped. Other contracts which contributed to their busy-ness and, in conjunction with the DCC contract, represent 50% of JET’s total income.

  1. £11k – Police and Crime Commissioner project – 2nd half not paid due to JET’s inability to prove project outcomes or whether the participants actually qualified for funding ~ 40 Pakistani youths
  2. £25k – Waste Management project – holding “surveys” and recycling existing ideas
  3. £22k – re-charge of one Global Education Derby (GED) recruitee, for a GED project, that Sharief ( as a trustee of GED) wanted on JET’s books – just so he could re-charge back to GED at at a premium.
  4. £24k – Henry Smith Charity for the person on reception whose primary duty is to make sure the visitor book is signed – a priority for JET!
  5. £10k – Big Lottery – refurbishing the reception area. It’s difficult to see how £10k could be, or has been, spent on JET’s entrance.
  6. £16k – Community Organisers. Essentially 1 person asking questions of the local Community. Although it is described as an “integral part of our work with the many nationalities who reside in our area of benefit”. The value and outcomes are not publicised anywhere.
  7. £11k Citizen’s Advice – Energy efficiency advice and advocacy? JET does have solar panels which is probably the qualifying criterion.

Just how many Jobs were secured, and how much Education and Training was delivered by this 50% of JET’s income? I would suggest ZERO. In fact these were required, in order to pay the extortionate £60k pa rent to Sharief, and sustain a top heavy organisation.

The most significant piece of financial self-flattery is JET’s balance sheet. At first glance, it can be read that JET has reserves of £331k; a healthy position one might think. However, £328k of this relates to the improvements made to the Normanton Rd property which is NOT owned by JET, and therefore is NOT an asset of JET. It is owned by the Sharief family – it is their asset, sitting proudly on JET’s balance sheet. The reality is that JET only has reserves of  ~ £3,000…which makes it a very fragile charity.

The failure of JET to have obtained any one of the “fringe” grants above would have made it insolvent….and by now, in 2016, it is must be constantly flirting with liquidation.

JET’s policy is to hold 6 month’s worth of running costs in reserves. This amounts to ~£200k – so, with reserves at £3k, they have buffer of about 1 week, not 6 months. A case of chronic financial mis-management. Sharief has bled JET dry….

Despite this predictably, dire situation, JET still managed to pay its employees an additional £32k in the year, and employ 2 extra people.

During the course of the year, a further 2 Trustees resigned, so they are now down to 5 people. Also their long-term auditors have been replaced which is always an interesting sign.

The next time that Sharief appears on East Midlands Today, Radio Derby or the Derby Telegraph clawing sympathy from the public as to how life is difficult for JET. Just picture the £500,000+ that he, and has family have been paid by the charity over the last 9 years, and how much value that could have achieved for the unemployed people of Derby had it been used in the way that it, morally, should have been.

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