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Fewer Australians Are Donating To Charity

Australian Charities Would Befit Hugely If People Left Bequests

Are you someone who donates their time to a charity? If you are someone who does this, then it should come as no surprise that you are probably more likely to donate money to charity as well. According to a report published by the Giving Australia 2016 project, whilst the total amount of money donated to charities in Australia has increased, the actual number of people making donations is falling. During the 2015-2016 financial year $12.5 billion was donated to charity by Australians which is up from the $10.1 billion donated during the 2005 financial year.

Some cause for concern

Nicholas Hookway of the University of Tasmania says the percentage of people donating has dropped from 87 per cent to about 80 per cent. According to Dr Hookway there are lots of good things happening in the charity sector however there are also some things that are cause for concern taking place.  He adds that people who donate their time to charities are also more likely to give donate money as well. It is estimated that approximately 43 per cent of Australians volunteer.

Australia now lower on World Giving Index

Dr Hookway says his research suggests that Australians like to think of themselves as being kind and agree that it is important to be kind to one another. He adds that the country has a reputation as being a kind and generous place. Despite these facts, the decline in the number of people giving money means that Australia’s ranking in the World Giving Index (WGI) has dropped. In 2016 Australia was ranked number 3 in the WGI. However according to the latest report, its position has fallen to number 6. The report highlighted the fact that giving had decreased all over the world last year.

Australian charity sector is huge

Despite the fall in the number of people who are donating to charities, the charity sector in Australia continues to be a big business Dr Hookway says. There are more than 50,000 registered charities in the country and the sector is valued at over $154 billion in total income. That figure means it is larger than the electricity, gas and water sectors.

"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."

Project Compassion Raises $11 Million For Caritas Australia This Year

Caritas Logo

Caritas Australia was able to marshal thousands of supporters ranging from generous individuals, school children and parishes throughout Australia. All the supporters expressed their solidarity with the poor of the world by donating a whopping $11 million to Caritas Australia’s Project Compassion Lenten campaign.

Annual fundraising exercise

The campaign takes place every year over the six weeks of Lent. Project Compassion aims to help put an end to poverty as well as promote justice and uphold dignity. This year’s theme was “Love your Neighbour” Over the years Project Compassion has been very successful and is now one of Australia’s largest fundraising and awareness campaigns. Paul O’Callaghan, Caritas Australia CEO said that he was overwhelmed by the extremely generous response to this year’s appeal which was delivered by supporters from every Australian state and territory.

Demonstrating faith and generosity

Mr O’Callaghan said that Project Compassion continues to demonstrate the faith and generosity of its supporters and has allowed Caritas Australia to deliver assistance to millions of people, enabling them to change their lives. The money that has been raised this year will ensure that Caritas will continue to be able to work with the most marginalised people in more than 29 countries around the world including Africa, Latin America, Asia, the Pacific and with Australia’s First People’s.

Alleviating poverty

Throughout this year’s appeal, Project Compassion reiterated its theme of “Love your Neighbour.” In the spirit of that theme, Caritas Australia sought to emphasise the impact of working hand in hand with the most vulnerable communities in the world so that it can continue with its ambition of alleviating poverty.

"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."

Caritas Australia Supports Women For The World Events

Caritas Logo

Women from across Australia are joining hands as part of a global sisterhood that is seeking to raise funding and awareness for women living in poverty all over the world. In September Caritas will be supporting Australia’s Women for the World fundraiser. The fundraiser will bring together thousands of women from across the country who will host their own Women for the World events. The events will range from just a plain morning tea, to an elaborate dinner party or perhaps a movie night.

Caritas Australia works globally

Caritas Australia is part of one of the world’s largest humanitarian networks and the agency is present in over 29 countries working at the community level. Caritas Australia also works with the First Australian communities so that their girls and women can also participate. The funds that will be raised by Women of the World events will go towards financing Caritas Australia’s work in the countries it operates in across Asia, Africa, Latin America and of course with First Australians.

Women suffer disproportionately

Michelle Fernon who is one of the founders of Women for the World and is a long-time advocate for Caritas Australia thinks now is the time to take action given the fact that it is women who disproportionately bear the brunt of extreme poverty globally. Ms Fernon says that women play an important role in society’s fabric however, 55 per cent of word’s poor are women. Many women have to put up with systemic discrimination that deprives them of education, access to healthcare or employment. Ms Fernon adds despite the gloomy picture, we can do something about it.

Bringing together people

Ms Fernon says that Women for the World events are about bringing together people who feel very strongly about social justice, especially when it relates to women. She goes on to say that hosting a fundraiser is a fantastic way to have a good time with friends and family whilst also making a huge difference to women’s lives all over the world. When hosting a Women for the World even, the most important thing is that people have fun, so she advises people to choose something they like to do and include friends, family and colleagues.

"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."

Leading Australian Humanitarian Aid Agencies May Form Coalition

Charity Image

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has backed a plan to better enable Australians to help people in need by combining various Australian charity groups into a one stop donation shop. Apparently plans are being made to follow other developed countries such as the United States to simplify the donation process for charities and aid groups. The plan is to get the various groups to act as a single entity by establishing a joint appeal mechanism for humanitarian responses.

Simple idea

The idea is very simple, by pooling resources and funding, charities and aid agencies will be better equipped to fight drought, famine and disease. If the plan works then a coalition of charities and aid agencies would also raise the profile of the disaster, collect more in donations and keep overhead costs down. Supporters of the idea say they think it would result in more money, food, clean water and medicines to reach the people that need it the most.

Australian government supports the idea

The Foreign Minister made a statement saying that the Turnbull Government supports the idea, but how exactly the various charities and agencies collaborate is a matter for them to decide. Aid groups immediately welcomed the response. Just last month a Global Emergency Response Coalition was created by eight major humanitarian aid agencies based in the United States. Similar coalitions have been established in Austria, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the U.K.

A single point of contact for donors

In practice, what the plan would mean is that single portal would be created as well as single phone line and website to manage solicitations for donations to a response to a humanitarian disaster. There would of course be governing mechanisms for groups who participate, and accountancy firms would be brought in with the funding to be distributed according to a fixed percentage. Participating organisations would have a say in how the money is to spent based on their ability to use the cash collected efficiently on the ground.

Not all plain sailing

Whilst the plan does simplify the process of donations, smaller agencies could wind up with the short end of the stick because they may see their brand diluted. Alternatively, there could be competition problems if major agencies decide against participating and not all agencies are likely to trust each other. Over the short run the public may find themselves unaware of the coalition and this could result in a drop in donations. Whilst the proposal has gotten close in the past, it has failed at board level with several agencies, hopefully with the backing of the Government this time it may cross the finish line.

"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."

Spoil Your Dad This Father’s Day With A Gift From The Oxfam Store

Oxfam Australia Says The Country Needs To Do More To Fight Climate Change

If you haven’t been paying attention, then to let you know, its Father’s Day on the 3rd of September. In order to find that perfect gift for dad, Oxfam is running a Father’s Day sale right up until the big day. There are dozens of gift ideas to choose from and if you are running short of time to find a thoughtful gift for Dad, why not buy something from the Oxfam Store. Remember all profits from your purchase go towards charity and the collection that Oxfam has put together for Father’s Day has something for everyone. Remember, the sale ends on 3rd September, so head on over to the Oxfam Store today.

Shop Now at Oxfam

"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."

Oxfam Australia Calls Out Multinational Companies For Tax Avoidance

Tax Avoidance

Oxfam Australia says the multinational company Reckitt Benckiser which manufacturers products that can be found in virtually every single Australian home has avoided $138 million worth of tax. The company which is now known as RB sells a wide range of products ranging from Dettol to Durex chose to locate its Australian regional hub in the Netherlands as part of a corporate restructuring which took place three years ago.

Benefiting from tax exemptions

The restructuring allowed the firm to be exempt from paying tax on as much as 75 per cent of its profits in the Netherlands, lowering its effective tax rate to as low as 7 per cent. In its ‘Making Tax Vanish’ report published by Oxfam, the aid agency says the Australian tax system is deeply flawed, allowing global corporations such as RB to systematically avoid paying the same level of taxes that Australian companies have to pay.

Ordinary Australians becoming impatient

Dr Helen Szoke Oxfam Australia CEO says she thinks that regular Australians are becoming increasingly impatient with global corporations and their tax practices. She says that many multinationals like RB that make products that are very familiar to Australians and given that Aussies are supporting their bottom line, it is expected that those companies should be paying tax in Australia.

Government is cracking down

Dr Szoke says it is perfectly reasonable for Australians to ask the question that if they are held to account for their taxes why aren’t global companies also held to account? The report comes at a time when the Australian government is indeed cracking down and is toughening the country’s laws on corporate tax avoidance as part of its “Earned here, Taxed here”

Tax avoidance means public services are not funded

Whilst tax avoidance is not illegal in Australia, it does mean that Australia does not receive funding for essential public services. For example, the $138 million in tax RB should have paid in tax between 2013 to 2015 could have been used to fund over 144,000 emergency patient admissions. The money could also have been used to fund 11,000 secondary school students and provide as many as 3000 disabled people with individualised support.

Australia misses out on as much as $6 billion tax revenue

Oxfam says it is behind the efforts of the Australian government to limit corporate tax abuse, but also urges additional reforms which would eliminate other common measures that result in tax avoidance. Oxfam reckons that Australia misses out on as much as $6 billion a year in tax revenues because multinational companies are engaging in corporate tax avoidance.

"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."

Warren Buffet Donates Over US$3 Billion To Charity

charity

Legendary investor Warren Buffet donated billions of dollars to charity earlier this month as part of his decade long plan to give away his entire fortune. The 86-year-old billionaire boss of Berkshire Hathaway who according to Forbes magazine is the fourth wealthiest person in the world donated US3.1 billion worth of Berkshire Hathaway stock to several non-profit organisations, making it his largest ever philanthropic contribution.

12th annual donation

This is the 12th annual donation made by Mr Buffet to five charities and constituted 18 million shares of his conglomerate. The largest beneficiary of the gift was the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Mr Buffet also gave shares to four family charities. The Gates Foundation which seeks to improve health and reduce poverty as well as aid education received $2.42 billion as its share of the donation.

Donations to family charities

Mr Buffet also made donations to the Susan Thompson Buffet Foundation which is named after his late first wife. He also gave shares to the Howard G. Buffet Foundation as well as the Sherwood and NoVo Foundations which are respectively run by his children Howard, Susan and Peter. After the latest donation Mr. Buffet has now given away US$27.5 billion to charity since 2006.

The Giving Pledge

Things took on a new turn in 2010 when Mr Buffet launched the Giving Pledge along with his fellow billionaire friend Bill Gates. The Pledge encourages the world’s wealthiest to give away the majority of their wealth to good causes and as of last month around 170 people had made the pledge. Despite giving away such a large amount of money, Mr Buffet’s position as the fourth richest person on the planet according to Forbes has not changed.

Friends with Bill Gates

Mr Gates and Mr Buffet are close personal friends and Mr Gates is also a director of Berkshire Hathaway. Mr Buffet usually reduces the number of shares he donates by about five per cent from the previous year. The charities tend to sell their shares in Berkshire in order to finance their activities which is in line with Mr Buffet’s wishes that the money be spent. Mr Buffet also makes smaller donations to other organisations as well.

"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."

Get Free Shipping On Orders Valued At $50 Or More From The Oxfam Shop – Offer Ends 30-07-17

Oxfam Australia Says The Country Needs To Do More To Fight Climate Change

The Oxfam Shop has a great offer on right now. If you spend $50 or more online on the 30th July 2017 you will be entitled to receive free standard shipping.  This deal is available for one day only so make sure you visit the Oxfam store on July 30th and make a purchase to take advantage of this deal.

How To Get This Deal

  • Visit the Oxfam Shop on 30th July 2017
  • Spend $50 or more
  • Get free shipping on your order

Shop Now at Oxfam

"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."

Australians Unaware Of Famine In East Africa Says Caritas

climate change

According to the latest polling data, approximately two-thirds of Australians know next to nothing about the 23 million people at risk of starvation in Yemen and East Africa. The number of people threatened by food insecurity in that part of the world is almost the entire population of Australia. Whilst Australians seem to be blissfully unaware of it, this catastrophe, is potentially the largest humanitarian disaster since the World War 2.

Australians can be generous

Paul O’Callaghan, Caritas Australia CEO says that back in 1984, hundreds of thousands of people responded to the Ethiopian famine and took action. Australians were extremely generous with their donations and many participated in a global movement led by U2 lead singer Bono and the Live Aid concerts which sought to end hunger and poverty. This time the scale seems to be significantly larger but the issue just doesn’t appear to be popping up on Australian’s radars.

Australians can make a difference

Mr O’Callaghan added that he had just returned from Kenya where he witnessed the huge level of human suffering for himself. In Kenya alone, there are three million people going hungry. The human requirements in countries affected by this famine are so intense and Australia has the ability to make a difference.

Please donate

Caritas Australia is the Catholic agency for International Aid and Development and as part of the international network of Caritas organisations, Caritas Australia has helped to deliver lifesaving support to nearly half a million-people affected by the famine. Mr O’Callaghan says the Caritas Australia is soliciting donations so that it can scale up the work that is doing in response to the famine and deliver food and water to people and communities who need it most.

"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."

Oxfam Still Working Hard To Beat Back Famine In South Sudan

famine africa

According to the latest Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC) figures, the famine that has gripped parts of Africa has been pushed back in the two South Sudan counties of Leer and Mayendit and is now classified as a humanitarian crisis instead of famine. Sara Almer, Oxfam South Sudan Country Director says as a result of the efforts made to deliver aid, famine has been driven back in most of Leer and Mayendit. Whilst that is good news, 45,000 people in these areas are still facing famine-like conditions.

Success should not lead to complacency

Ms Almer adds that success in pushing back famine should not make us complacent, the food crisis continues to spread across South Sudan and nearly half the population of South Sudan or 6 million people are still at risk of severe hunger and require immediate assistance. Ms Almer estimates that over a million people in the former Jonglei State continue to live in a state of extreme hunger and have undergone months without enough food to eat. Oxfam is doing its part by distributing emergency food in the worst affected areas as it seeks to prevent the situation from getting even worse.

The starving depend on food aid

Ms Almer goes on to say whilst aid is providing some relief, the hungriest people in South Sudan have simply run out of ways to handle the situation and depend on food aid in order to survive. The rainy season is fast approaching, which will make it harder to deliver aid to people. Along with the rains comes an increased risk of cholera and other water borne disease out-breaks. As the rains start we arrive at the time of year when people are at their hungriest, just before the harvesting of crops.

 “While immediate help to fight hunger is still needed now, what the people of South Sudan ultimately need is peace. Along with sending aid, the international community needs to redouble its efforts to bring all warring parties to the negotiating table and to peacefully end their differences.” Said Ms Almer

IPC used by many countries and aid agencies now

The IPC system is used as a mechanism for improving food security analysis and related decision making. It is basically a standardised scale that combines information about food security, livelihood and nutrition into a clear metric which shows the nature and severity of food security. The IPC was first used by the FAO’s Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit (FSNAU). Since it was first developed a number of countries and international agencies have introduced it in their own food security contexts.

"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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