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Monthly SMS Donations Land in Australia

1 September 2015 at 11:59 am
Ellie Cooper
For the first time from today charities will be able to set up regular monthly SMS donations from their supporters.

Ellie Cooper | 1 September 2015 at 11:59 am


Monthly SMS Donations Land in Australia
1 September 2015 at 11:59 am

For the first time from today charities will be able to set up regular monthly SMS donations from their supporters.

Digital fundraising platform, GiveEasy, has launched the ability for charities to receive regular donations by SMS.

As the first platform in Australia that allowed SMS donations to charities, GiveEasy CEO Jeremy Tobias told Pro Bono Australia News that the changes would mean charities could convert supporters to regular givers via text message.

“Regular giving via SMS has been hugely successful offshore,” Tobias said.

“This Australian first means that people have an easy way to donate, the charity gets regular payments that provide an additional channel for funds and donors have peace of mind knowing they aren’t signing up for a lifetime but can choose to donate – or not – each month.

“And importantly, our charity clients find that it is a cost effective way to increase their share of the market.”

Tobias said that after a donor signed up for SMS giving they would receive a text message at the same time every month telling them their donation was being processed. They could then choose to skip that month’s donation, cease their donations altogether or, if they did not reply, their donation would go ahead.

Tobias said charities like Amnesty International, Oxfam and the Australian Red Cross were already using donations via mobile, with the technology already becoming a standard part of charities’ revenue streams in their every-increasing quest for funds.

Charities can trial the new tool for free but are then required to select one of several paid plans with GiveEasy if they want to continue using it.

During the recent Nepal earthquake disaster, Oxfam Australia used the GiveEasy SMS donation platform to receive donations. The charity sent an outbound SMS to their supporter base and promoted the SMS number as a channel to donate via Twitter, Facebook as well as on Triple J radio and ABC's Q&A television program.

Australia’s Not for Profits have been urging telcos to do more to help the sector use mobile telephone technology to raise funds for more than a decade.

A Telco Together Foundation trial set up in July is the first time the major telcos have come together in Australia to try to overcome many of the hurdles preventing SMS donations in Australia including billing issues and cross platform compatibility.

In 2013 GiveEasy launched an Australian SMS text message “giving” system for Australian charities ahead of the telcos saying the platform gives charities a giving solution via mobile texting that the telcos have so far not come to the party with.

The Give Easy system provided charities with a unique mobile phone number that could be used for any fundraising appeal and allows mobile phone donors to make a fast donation by just typing in the dollar amount within the SMS.

Ellie Cooper  |  Journalist  |  @ProBonoNews

Ellie Cooper is a journalist covering the social sector.

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