Matched Giving & Collective Impact: A Smarter Way to Give
1 July 2015 at 10:55 am
There’s a new philanthropic phenomena at play in Australia, and a timely one at that with June being Workplace Giving Month, writes Julia Keady, committee member of giving circle Impact100 Melbourne.
This philanthropic phenomenon is at the intersection of two great initiatives: one being employers matching the private charitable contributions of their employees, and the second being the rise and rise of giving circles, or collective impact.
In the last three years alone, giving circles have been responsible for collectively granting more than $4 million of philanthropic support to charities.
Lisa Grinham, CEO of Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) Australia reports that matching is also key to the success of Workplace Giving, with an estimated $40 million of donations granted to charities in 2012 (ATO).
“We are seeing growing interest in Giving Circles from our Workplace Giving clients and it is undoubtedly being influenced by company matching,” she says.
“With 70% of CAF clients matching their employee donations, the collective impact really adds up for charities.”
For everyday Aussies and young professionals like Alex Pattison, giving this way and also being on the Committee of giving circle Impact100 Melbourne, is simply one of the most logical and meaningful ways to participate in community.
Pattison is a Commercial Manager for Air BP ANZ – the specialised aviation division of BP Australia who has an employee program that includes matched giving for financial contributions, matched ‘time’ for volunteering and matched ‘effort’ for employees partaking in fundraising activities such as marathons.
In the last two years, Alex’s donation into Impact100 Melbourne – which comprises 100 members giving $1000 a year to create a $100,000 high impact grant – has been met by BP, meaning he has now contributed $4000 to the growing giving circle.
“I’m sure that most large organisations are offering matched giving in some ways, but most people either don’t know about, or don’t take advantage of it,” he says.
“When I saw that BP would match my giving, I knew that my $1000 would go even further and help more people that aren’t as fortunate as me.”
“More employers should be looking at this, because my generation of employees are looking for companies that support community engagement.
“For me, it makes me believe more in the organisation I work for, and inevitably provides another reason to stay with your employer.
As for being involved with Impact100 Melbourne, Pattison says it’s a perfect fit for him.
“I was looking for something outside of work where I could have a meaningful impact on society,” he says.
“Impact100 Melbourne has offered just that. Each year, as a Committee member and general member I get to deep drive into a new social issue.
“Last year, we addressed Homelessness and granted $100,000 to an amazing women’s homelessness program in Melbourne. This year, we exploring Youth and Education in Melbourne and I can’t wait to learn more about what’s missing in our society in this area.
“Being part of a giving circle has also meant that I have been able to meet amazing people and incredible charities in Melbourne, all doing their very best to help the disadvantaged in Melbourne.
“There are more than 10 formal giving circles in Australia now, and there’s a good rundown of each group on Philanthropy Australia’s website.
“Sometimes, just being part of something meaningful, that is also a lot of fun, can really have a huge impact on your life. It certainly has for me.”
Impact100 Melbourne is now able to receive donations from employers and matched giving from employers through its association with Charities Aid Foundation.
About the author: Julia Keady is a brand and social investment strategist, and runs her own consultancy. She has a Masters in Philanthropy and Social Investment and in her time as the inaugural CEO of Australian Women Donors Network helped create tools and events to foster growth and profile of collective giving. She is passionate about the democratisation of philanthropy, a topic she knows well having also established the marketing and partnerships for the new Museum of Australian Democracy at Eureka (M.A.D.E).