FI-A Conference – People, Practice & Possibilities
Monday, 4th March 2002 at 12:03 pm
National and international fundraisers turned their eyes to Queensland last week for the Fundraising Institute – Australia’s Annual Conference with the theme of People, Practice and Possibilities.
An impressive turn out of 430 participants heard experts discuss the future directions of fundraising. The Syd Herron Oration was delivered at the Conference opening by community activist and lawyer Rhonda Galbally AO.
Galbally told the conference that Australians celebrate too much that we are a giving nation when in fact Australians don’t give enough.
She said Australians are great at volunteering but poor on giving money.
Galbally said there should be new sources of philanthropy and socially responsible corporate giving in Australia.
She said 95% of the $20 Billion available each year comes from government.
Galbally called on the Third Sector to remove competition and to create a learning network where fundraisers share successes and failures.
She said the role of the Fundraising Institute should be to create an environment where experiments and risks are possible and supported and most important where learning from mistakes as well as successes are respected and supplied. Rhonda Galbally is currently the CEO of Our Community.
Dennis O’Reilly who is responsible for fundraising at the Royal Institute of Deaf and Blind Children in Sydney has had 30 years experience in the field.
O’Reilly agrees with Rhonda Galbally that fundraisers need to be more professional.
O’Reilly says the future of fundraising must see organisations take up the important tools of mainstream marketing such as brand development, getting involved in more research to know existing supporters and developing what the corporate sector calls Customer Relations Marketing.
He predicted that the problems for smaller community groups will get worse while the greater part of the fundraising dollar will go to the national and international organisations that are more visible with significant economies of scale.
He said the challenge for the smaller groups is to find the solution to stay on track.
The Conference proved a forum for some wide-ranging discussion. If there is a topic from the meeting that you would like to raise why not post it on our Forum.