CEO Update

In mid-July, I travelled to Canberra to attend the Associations Forum National Conference. I was invited to speak on a panel examining the latest in technology for associations and charities. We discussed the best approaches for digital and technology transformations, starting with strategy and asking the question, ‘what is the problem we’re trying to solve?’ So many of our members are undertaking transformations in their digital platforms and it is one of the most challenging areas to get right!  I’ve managed a few digital transformations over the years, so I was able to share my experience in this area, along with several other associations who are undergoing transformations of their own.

Also, while in the nation’s capital, I was asked to appear on 2CC Radio’s drive program to talk to presenter Tim Shaw about different aspects of fundraising. It was an opportunity to talk up the good work of the sector, and the interview was a pleasant experience. To my delight, I also featured last week in the Australian Financial Review’s Traveller column, discussing how I travel for work and play. For the record, it’s always economy class, but I hate the middle seat!

Back in Sydney, I met with the Hon Kevin Anderson, the newly appointed Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation in New South Wales, to introduce FIA and talk about red tape reduction for fundraisers. I found him to be an excellent listener who was engaged in the issues that fundraisers face. While he has a rather lot on his plate at the moment, as he oversees the issues with the building industry, he agreed that the red tape burden was onerous and was glad for the chance to meet to consider further feedback from members. FIA also welcomed the release of revised Charitable Fundraising Guidelines, published by Fair Trading NSW. Crucially, they offer guidance on crowdfunding, making it clear this increasingly popular fundraising channel falls within the regulatory framework. You can read the Best Practice Guidelines for Charitable Organisations here.

Mid-week, I flew to Melbourne for meetings, including a visit to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Footscray. Alan White, our Young Fundraiser of the Year, gave me a tour and told me about the 40+ programs the organisation has developed over the past 18 years to help refugees and people seeking asylum. Their hard-working team do incredible work to support the well-being and dignity of their clients.

In other member news, disability service providers House with No Steps and The Tipping Foundation, which merged last year, have rebranded as Aruma. They chose the name after extensive consultation with staff, customers and stakeholders. For the new organisation, Aruma means being bold and brave and putting people with a disability first. Congratulations to our friends on their new brand!

Speaking of members, just a reminder that it is once again membership renewal time. Keeping up with your FIA membership means you continue to be connected to and informed about FIA initiatives and developments in your sector. To renew, go here. If you have already renewed your membership, many thanks for your continued support.