Australian Companies Donate Millions To Charity Through Work Place Initiatives

Australian Charities Would Befit Hugely If People Left Bequests

Ten companies listed on the Australian stock exchange have been recognised for their charitable donations. At some companies as many as 65 per cent of employees donate to charities regularly. Last month, Jenny Geddes CEO of the Australian Charities Fund launched an online campaign which seeks to convince 1 million employees to make charitable donations through workplace giving programs. According to the latest national data from 2014, 156,000 Australians were donating to charities through employer based initiatives that deduct pre-tax donations from pay packets.

“We have always known that workplace giving is a sensible way to give and support charities. We launched the 1 million donors campaign to create an ambitious target for employers. If we can get to 1 million donors that will mean $250 million flowing to the charity sector based on an average donation of $200 per workplace-giving donor per year.” Ms Geddes said.

Matched donations

CEO of JB Hi-Fi Richard Murray who also acts as chairman of the Australian Charities Fun’s employer leadership group says JB Hi-Fi and its employees have made charitable donations since 2008 totalling $10 million including giving $1.6 million this year alone. JB Hi-Fi matches employee donations and sponsors nine charities. SEEK which was the second ranked company behind JB Hi-Fi in the ASX givers table says 57 per cent of the company’s 780 employees regularly give to charity through the workplace according to the company’s human resources director Kathleen McCudden.

“One of our core beliefs is to have a positive impact on society. We really encourage individuals to sign up and do their bit. That is why we’ve been able to drive high participation rates. To attract the best talent, people want to work for companies who care and who are socially responsible.” she said.

Good for the companies

Anita Russel general manager of Flight Centre Foundation said that nearly a third of the company’s 10,000 employees gave to charity through work place initiatives. She adds the company has always given to charity but has done so in an ad hoc manner. Flight Centre Foundation and its employees will donate around $1 million this year.

“The buck starts with our guys; every dollar they donate through workplace giving is matched dollar for dollar by the company. All of our partners have been chosen with input from our people. Workplace giving is a no-brainer. It is a win for people because it is so easy and they know they are having an impact. It is good for the company and it is a win for our charity partners because they have a consistent flow of money.” Ms Russell said.

"Please note, any prices mentioned in the Charity Gifts blog are correct at the time of posting. Please check the relevant website for the latest pricing information."

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