BOAT – Blackfriars Overseas Aid Trust
Who We Are
Welcome to BOAT! Our charity (no. 288585) was founded in 1984 by a group from the 9.30 Family Mass at Blackfriars in Oxford, who wanted to reach out to communities across the world.
We have two charitable aims – the relief of poverty and the advancement of education in Asia, Africa, and South and Central America. In practice, that translates into support for a range of projects (18-20 at any one time) mainly in the areas of health, welfare, community development or education.
What We Do
We want our funding really to “make a difference”, so we support small-scale or grass-roots projects with regular grants (currently around £4,000 a year). Occasionally, we make a one-off grant (for things like water tanks or grinding mills). More often a project will be funded for three years and then considered for renewal on a rolling basis.
We always look for projects with some link to the congregation or the Dominican order. Though many have Catholic links, that is not a condition, and we don’t fund any form of evangelisation. We aim to help communities find long-term solutions to their needs, rather than short-term fixes, although, from time to time, we do give money to help with emergencies.
what makes us special
In 2022, we raised around £83,000 and gave grants of around the same amount in total. We spent only £255 on administration costs (bank costs and producing our annual report), which confirms that almost every pound we raise goes directly to supporting our projects.
We also have a personal link with all of our projects. Each of our Trustees and committee members keeps in touch throughout the year with one or two projects and gets to understand the challenges and achievements of the people we are working with. That’s often a very humbling experience and is a wonderful insight into the wider world for them and for the congregation as a whole.
The BOAT Committee meets monthly on Sundays immediately after the 9:30 Family Mass to discuss new and ongoing projects. There is also an annual AGM. Everyone is welcome–you do not need to be a Trustee or committee member to attend our meetings or AGM and we are always eager to hear about new projects that BOAT might be able to support. For information about the next monthly meeting, please email: BoatBlackfriars@gmail.com
You can find out more about BOAT from the overview on the Charity Commission website.
Some of Our Projects
- Ethiopia – helping to provide education to the most disadvantaged in the village of Zizencho
- Myanmar– enabling communities to have access to clean drinking water by building water tanks
- Rwanda– providing entrepreneurship training for those recovering from the traumas of genocide
- Jamaica – providing essential supplies and support for staff at a very disadvantaged primary school
- India – supporting essential tutoring for the children of rag pickers in a slum outside Delhi
- Peru – supporting a township project to reduce childhood malnutrition and domestic violence
- Philippines – assisting the indigenous Subaanen people to access health care and education
- Uganda – providing mosquito nets to prevent malaria, a leading cause of death amongst local children.
More information about all the different projects supported by BOAT can be found in our Annual Reports, available below.
In addition to our regular projects, we also support one or two particular projects through donations raised specifically during Lent. The BOAT Lenten Appeal is an opportunity to connect through fasting and prayer with communities across the world. In 2022, in response to the world-wide cost of living crisis, exacerbated by the disruptions caused by COVID, the Lenten Appeal raised funds to provide extra food for the many schools supported by BOAT, while in 2023, the Lenten Appeal helped to build a new water well for the Allipalli Children’s Centre in Andhra Pradesh in India..
You can find out more about BOAT from the overview on the Charity Commission website
BOAT LENTEN APPEAL 2024
This Lenten season, the Blackfriars Overseas Aid Trust (BOAT) is sponsoring an appeal focused on empowering teenage girls living in one of the most deprived areas of New Delhi.
We are raising funds for Sugandh Foundation to establish a computer lab aimed at equipping teenage girls with essential computer literacy skills that will provide life-changing academic and career opportunities for these young individuals.
When BOAT’s contact, Autumn Rowan-Hull, visited the community last year with her sons, Sugandh’s leaders emphasised the importance of computer literacy in fostering academic excellence and advancing the careers of young women in particular. Integrating computer literacy into the community will not only improve the academic performance of girls from disadvantaged backgrounds, but will also enhance their job prospects. Moreover, by empowering teenage girls through computer literacy, we are not only investing in their future, but also laying the foundation for them to become role models for younger girls in their community. They will serve as beacons of inspiration, demonstrating the transformative power of education and technology.
Through your generosity, we can create a ripple effect of positive change. We hope to provide at least 8 refurbished computers at a cost of £380 each. There is also the expense of IT training at £100 per month and typing courses, as well as ensuring the girls and young women are taught how to stay safe online. Can you help by making a donation? Large, small, or in between: it all helps. And please consider donating the savings from your Lenten abstinences to the appeal.
Thank you for considering our appeal and for your unwavering support and love. Together, we can make a meaningful difference in the lives of these young women and to our community as a whole.
You can donate by using the envelopes that will be handed out by BOAT at the end of Lent after the 9:30am Mass or can do so online by putting ‘BOAT Lenten Appeal’ in the reference box — for how to donate online and ensure that BOAT collects Gift Aid, see below.
Donating to BOAT
We are very lucky with the generosity of the congregation at Blackfriars and a wider group of supporters. We hold regular fundraising events such as cafés and auctions and we sell recycled greeting cards. But we rely on income from our regular donors to be sure we can commit to longer-term funding, as well as for the annual Lenten Appeal. If you would like to support our projects, please consider setting up a Standing Order in favour of BOAT.
- With most banks and building societies, you can set up a Standing Order online or over the phone.
- Alternatively, you can go into your bank to complete a Standing Order form. You’ll need the BOAT account number and sort code (as well as some personal identification) — BOAT’s details can be found below.
Gift Aid: Your regular and one-off donations will stretch much further if you complete a Gift Aid Declaration form for BOAT, if you haven’t already done so. There is a downloadable Gift Aid form at the bottom of this webpage.
BOAT’s bank account details are as follows:
Beneficiary Name: Blackfriars Overseas Aid Trust
Beneficiary Account Number: 00087533
Beneficiary Sort Code: 30-96-35
Beneficiary’s Bank: Lloyds Bank plc, 1 High Street, Oxford OX1 4AA
- If you are making a donation specifically for the Lenten Appeal, please put ‘BOAT Lenten Appeal‘ into the reference box.
- Standing Order and Gift Aid Declaration forms are available to download below.
B.O.A.T. Privacy Notice – May 2018
Please see below for an explanation of why and how we use your data, and your rights in respect of that data.
In line with the transparency and information objectives of the General Data Protection Regulation, also known as the GDPR, BOAT, as a data controller, wishes to provide supporters with the following information:
Personal data we may hold
The personal data we may hold includes your name and address, your telephone and email contact details, and your bank account details. We only collect data directly from you, often in connection with a Gift Aid declaration.
Purposes of Processing
We hold your data for our legitimate interests of keeping you informed about BOAT’s activities, maintaining our accounting and tax records and promoting our general charitable purposes.
We do not share your personal data with third parties other than our professional advisors, as necessary, and with HMRC if you have completed a Gift Aid declaration.
As many of our supporters have completed Gift Aid declarations, the personal data we hold is part of our tax records. In line with our tax record- keeping obligations, we generally hold your personal data for a period of 7 years after your last contact with us.
Data Subject Rights
Under the GDPR, you may be entitled to obtain information on the processing of your personal data, to object to the processing of your personal data, to make use of your right to data portability and to have your personal data rectified or deleted or its processing restricted. You are also entitled to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority, which is generally the supervisory authority where you work and/or are resident.
If you have given us consent for the processing of your personal data, you are entitled to revoke such consent at any time. Such revocation will not affect our continued processing of this personal data if we are entitled to continue doing so for a lawful purpose under the GDPR. For example, we may determine that we need to maintain your personal data for our legitimate purpose of maintaining accurate Gift Aid records.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the processing of your personal data or the terms of this Notice or want to exercise your rights as outlined above, you should contact John Thanassoulis or Filomena Nave at the following address: Blackfriars Overseas Aid Trust, c/o Blackfriars Priory, 64 St Giles, Oxford OX1 3LY, or via email at: BoatBlackfriars@gmail.com.