The Power of Giving
3 October 2016 at 10:20 am
Emma Boyar is the next generation manager of Jewish Care which provides support and opportunities for individuals and families to strengthen the wellbeing and resilience of the Victorian Jewish community. She is this week’s Changemaker.
Boyar embarked on a career in fundraising after her “eyes were opened” to the Not for Profit sector during a leadership trip in Washington DC.
She has worked for the Australian Not for Profit group Mercy Health and spent five months in New York with the Clinton Global Initiative, bringing back new ideas for change and philanthropy before securing her current role where she aims to connect a cohort of donors aged 30 to 49 to the work of Jewish Care.
To this aim, she recently worked on a digital crowdfunding campaign, Hand Up for a Home, which was run through the online platform Chuffed.org and engaged the Pratt Foundation to match donations dollar for dollar to raise funds for the refurbishment of social housing in East St Kilda.
In this week’s Changemaker Boyar talks about what she calls business with a heart, the power of a gift used wisely and why crowdfunding is exciting.
What made you want to work in the Not for Profit sector?
I have a love of community and passion to promote the power of giving. Since my childhood, I was influenced by my family values and how they gave time and money to charity, which encouraged me to do the same. I quickly saw the power of a gift used wisely.
I had no idea that you could make a career in the Not for Profit world. As a student political leader, I was fortunate to attend a leadership trip in Washington DC and my eyes were opened to fundraising as a career and the Not for Profit sector as a whole.
How did you start out?
I was eager to work in the Not for Profit sector, but like most graduates I found it difficult to secure my first job. By chance, I met a woman who was setting up the Mercy Health Foundation and I offered to volunteer to gain experience. Within a couple of months I was offered a full-time job.
I have always been fortunate to have leaders invest in my development and give me the opportunity to grow professionally.
Later, I was eager to explore the sector on a global scale. I was exploring international models for change and philanthropy and was inspired by the work and ideas of President Clinton and his Foundation, the Clinton Global Initiative. I was selected to complete an internship with the president and worked on the Clinton Global Initiative, a model for change and philanthropy that I believe will be of benefit in Australia.
When I returned to Australia, I consulted for a number of Not for Profits. When I thought about the values that were important to me and what I wanted out of a job, Jewish Care stood out. So I wrote to the CEO outlining my skills and after a few conversations, I was offered a position.
What do you like best about working in Jewish Care?
The values and diversity of the people Jewish Care assists, who I have the opportunity to connect with. Jewish Care is rich in history, built on the values of family, respect, kindness and charity.
It is a privilege to be able to share conversation, learn and be inspired every day by our clients, residents and staff, as well as our volunteers who generously share their time and skills at Jewish Care. It is also a privilege to connect with and learn from our donors, who generously contribute to Jewish Care in order to support and enhance the wellbeing of the Victorian Jewish community.
What does a typical day for you involve as next generation manager?
That’s the next best thing about my job: the variety of my role. As the next generation manager, I aim to connect a cohort of donors aged 30 to 49 to the work of Jewish Care. It is an exciting role as I have the flexibility and support of management to create new initiatives.
My day typically involves creating new campaigns, meeting with donors, creating donor engagement opportunities and working with the fundraising team to support appeal activities.
Jewish Care recently raised $162,899 through Chuffed for the Hand Up For a Home campaign, with the Pratt Foundation matching donations dollar for dollar. What was the goal for the recent campaign?
Our campaign had two objectives: raise $180,000 to refurbish five units within Jewish Care’s social housing complex in East St Kilda and to connect an unconnected new group of young donors to the organisation.
The total amount raised was $162,899. Although our final figure is a tad short of our goal, we still feel it was a successful campaign. We will refurbish four units and we successfully achieved our objective to connect a younger group of donors to Jewish Care.
We successfully engaged the Pratt Foundation to match donations made through the campaign. As a result of the Pratt Foundation’s generosity, the matching funds will mean that we have raised $325,000. Matching donations certainly motivated donors to give, and inspired them to consider a larger gift knowing that it was matched, and ultimately would double the impact.
Why did you choose to use a digital crowdfunding platform for this campaign?
With technology evolving at a rapid pace and the subsequent evolution of donor’s behaviour, we knew we had to create a campaign that appealed to the donors’ needs and giving.
Our campaign was launched at a social event in a St Kilda art gallery. The event’s MC and campaign ambassador, Phillip Kingston, director of Gary Peer, invited the 160 guests to check their mobile phones on the night, where they received a text message about the crowdfunding campaign.
We chose crowdfunding as our platform because crowdfunding builds a community. You are not just asking for money – you are asking people to donate, like and share your message across various social media platforms. The act of sharing the message and donating to the cause empowers the donors to advocate for the project and champion the campaign.
You receive an instant response / approval from the market. Once you launch you can quickly get an understanding of whether the campaign will be successful due to the number of likes and shares on social media, and the speed in which donations flow in.
And, crowdfunding is exciting.
With digital crowdfunding you can celebrate your success. Crowdfunding is all about making your donors (your “crowd”) feel empowered that their $10, $100, $1000 has made an impact.
Through your work, what is your ultimate dream?
I hope that philanthropy in Australia continues to grow, that donors start talking about their giving – whatever the size, and as Australians we realise that we can make a better society for today and the future by working together.
All charity is good charity, but we need to work to ensure our local Not for Profit organisations that offer fantastic services but may not be the “coolest” charity, are funded and are sustainable.
Do you see yourself staying in the Not for Profit sector for the rest of your career?
The sectors are changing – we now see for-profit organisations making a profit and doing amazing work to improve society. Corporate social responsibility is being measured not just by the cheque that they donate to a Not for Profit. With the increase of what I call “business with a heart”, there is less of a division between corporate companies and Not for Profits. You can now work for a corporate that is not only driven by its bottom line, but also measures its social impact, reviews suppliers by their environmental footprint and is value-driven from the top down. It is an exciting time for Australia and if I believe I can make a contribution to the sector, I will continue my work.
Who or what inspires you?
I am inspired by individuals who have achieved success and give back. I am huge fan of Oprah.
What are you reading at the moment?
Andrew Carnegie’s The Gospel of Wealth. Carnegie believed in giving wealth away during one’s lifetime, and this essay includes one of his most famous quotes: “The man who dies thus rich dies disgraced.”
Do you have a favourite saying?
Be strong and of good courage.