CEO Update

October is Ethics Awareness Month for fundraisers, a new, worldwide initiative spearheaded by our North American-based sister organisation, the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP). What better time for fundraisers to reflect on their own best practice and devise strategies for strengthening the ethical culture not only in their fundraising teams but across their organisations?

P Please remember that FIA has a user-friendly Code with practice notes that addresses many of the ethical dilemmas fundraisers will encounter in their work. These include how to deal with people in vulnerable circumstances, how beneficiaries are portrayed in fundraising appeals and ensuring ethical behaviour in your supply chain.

We offer training and advice on ethical decision-making through our online Code course, and we have a member-only library with a variety of titles on ethical fundraising. You can email training@fia.org.au for our catalogue.

When I was in London for the Institute of Fundraising’s annual convention earlier this year, I participated in a video with their Chief Executive Peter Lewis and President/Chief Executive Mike Geiger of the AFP. In it, we discussed the importance of Ethics Awareness Month and our various initiatives to promote best practice, including our codes and guidelines. You can watch our video here.

Red-tape reduction roundtables a success

I’m happy to report more progress on red-tape reduction for fundraisers. In late September, we organised member roundtables in Sydney and Canberra with the Hon Zed Seselja, Assistant Minister for Finance, Charities and Electoral Matters, to discuss ideas for red-tape reform. These meetings followed my initial discussion with the Minister, who said he was open to considering our ideas, especially around providing a national ‘one-stop-shop’ for registering fundraising campaigns.

The Minister wanted evidence from our members to support his case for federal government leadership on red-tape reduction. Our members rose to the occasion with many stories about the burden and expense they faced through duplicative licensing and reporting requirements.

It’s show (case) time!

I was so glad I was able to attend the inaugural FIA Tasmania Fundraising Forum last month; it was extremely well-organised and attended. Tasmanian fundraisers impressed me with their collegiality and willingness to share their experiences. I will be packing my bags tonight to get ready for the Western Australia Fundraising Forum on Wednesday, and then I’m off to participate in the South Australia Fundraising Showcase on 25 October. While in Adelaide, I will also be meeting with the SA Consumer Affairs Commissioner to understand how South Australia has achieved its own reforms and to discuss our red-tape reform agenda.

I really enjoy travelling to the states to meet members and our many committee volunteers! Sharing inspiration, ideas, passion, information and experiences with your fellow fundraising professionals at FIA events is a great way to develop your knowledge and skills while expanding your network. Do take advantage of the networking and educational opportunities FIA offers in your state.

All in the family

As our membership drive continues, we have had several new organisations join the FIA family. A bit of information about each organisation for you:

The GIANTS Foundation. The Greater Western Sydney Football Club (GWS Giants) has been an amazing success story, this year making it all the way to the Grand Final. Its foundation, launched in 2014, supports community organisations and charities across the club’s footprint. They aim to enhance the lives of people through education and awareness, and use the positive influence that sport can have to make a difference.  https://giantsfoundation.org.au/

NASCA (National Aboriginal Sporting Chance Academy) works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to create a strength-based, culturally strong environment that results in Indigenous Australians realising a level of health and prosperity on par with all Australians. https://nasca.org.au/

The MS Society SA/NT helps to minimise the impact of multiple sclerosis on individuals, families, carers and the community in South Australia and the Northern Territory, while supporting research and providing reliable information, allied health and social support. https://www.ms.asn.au/

Meals on Wheels SA Incorporated is a community-based volunteer organisation working throughout South Australia. Since 1954, they have assisted many people in living independently in their own homes by providing nutritious meals to those who cannot cook or shop for themselves. https://sacommunity.org/org/201632-Meals_on_Wheels_SA

The Mito Foundation drives mitochondrial disease research to find a cure for this little-understood condition. The foundation also provides much-needed support to patients and their families. https://www.mito.org.au/

Established in 1976, Special Olympics Australia seeks public assistance to ensure that people with intellectual disabilities have opportunities to play sport to open the door to personal achievement, pride and inclusion. http://www.specialolympics.com.au/

Welcome to all our new members, and I look forward to meeting with you soon!

Katherine Raskob
Chief Executive Officer