ACNC Commissioner Warns: Be Careful When Giving This EOFY
28 June 2017 at 1:51 pm
As the end of the financial year approaches, Australia’s national charity regulator is urging members of the public to donate wisely.
Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) commissioner, Susan Pascoe AM, has called on people to be vigilant and to donate with care during what is traditionally a busy time for charitable giving.
“Time and time again, Australians have shown themselves to be among the world’s most generous donors to charity,” Pascoe said.
“According to the Australian Charities Report 2015, Australians donated $11.2 billion to charity – a 2.4 per cent increase compared to the year prior.
“We know that people are often especially keen to donate to charity in the lead-up to the end of the financial year. As they do so, we encourage them to give wisely.”
Pascoe said there were simple precautions that people could take when considering making charitable donations.
“If you are approached by someone claiming to be collecting donations on behalf of a legitimate cause or charity, there are some easy ways to make sure that your donation goes where you intend,” she said.
“Simple things such as asking for identification, or asking for a receipt, can help to ensure that you are confident in your donation.
“And when considering a donation to charity, take the time to do your homework – find out more about the charity you are thinking of donating to, and about how it uses donations.
“Being an informed donor is a vital part of giving to charity.”
Pascoe encouraged people to refer to the ACNC Charity Register – a free register that displays information about more than 54,000 registered charities in Australia – when making a donation.
“The charity register contains information about a charity’s activities, beneficiaries, financial details and more,” she said.
“Any donor can visit the website at acnc.gov.au/charityregister to learn more about a charity.”
Pascoe said the ACNC’s Registered Charity Tick was another way for members of the public to easily determine if a charity is registered with the ACNC.
“Since its launch in December 2016, more than 8,000 charities have downloaded and begun to display the Registered Charity Tick,” Pascoe said.
“The charity tick is designed to reassure the public, at a glance, that a charity is registered, accountable and committed to transparency.
“We encourage all charities to download the tick and begin displaying it on their promotional materials and website.”
Many charities are also members of the Fundraising Institute Australia (FIA) which is the largest representative body for the $12.5 billion fundraising sector.
Members include charities and other not-for-profit organisations operating domestically and internationally, as well as suppliers and professionals who provide services and support to the sector.
The FIA administers a system of self-regulation including the fundraising code of conduct.
Also check out Pro Bono Australia’s extensive online listing of Australian charities in the Guide to Giving – now in its 28th year – which has established itself as Australia’s largest and most trusted directory that connects donors with causes.