Fundraising for a disaster
Disasters are times of heightened emotions, and it’s understandable and admirable that you would like to do something to assist your fellow Australian. But before you decide to launch a fundraiser you may want to consider partnering with an existing fundraiser rather than taking on all the responsibilities yourself.
Is there an existing fundraiser I can work with?
You don’t have to take on all the responsibilities (and there are quite a few) of a fundraiser on your own. It may be better to donate or offer your services to an existing charity.
Consider approaching an existing charity to see if your planned fundraising activities can support them before starting your own.
Even if you partner with an existing fundraiser, it may be possible to create a separate named fund under their organisation.
Benefits of working with an existing fundraiser
The benefits of working with an existing fundraiser are:
- Raise more money. Members of the public, government agencies and other organisations who donate money for charitable purposes, may prefer to give their donation to fundraisers with a proven track record, rather than a new fundraiser.
- Less paperwork. If an authorised NSW fundraiser allows you to fundraise on their behalf (in writing), then you won’t need to apply for an authority. An authority is like a permit or licence to conduct a fundraiser.
- Greater percentage of donations going to the intended recipient(s). It is less effective to have several groups doing the same work for the same cause. Not only can it be confusing to would-be donors, but it duplicates running costs – meaning less money goes to those in need.
- No financial reporting. There are a number of financial reporting requirements involved in running a fundraiser. If you are partnered with an existing charity holding an authority, all financial responsibilities are undertaken by the authority holder. To learn more about the obligations of fundraisers, visit key responsibilities for fundraising.
- Fewer responsibilities. The duties and responsibilities of fundraisers are significant and wide-ranging and need to be taken seriously. You need to be prepared to invest the necessary time and effort to understanding and carrying out these responsibilities.
A full overview of the responsibilities of fundraisers is available in the Charitable Fundraising Guidelines.
I still want to go it alone
If you do decide to start your own fundraiser it is highly likely you will need an authority to fundraise. An authority is like a permit or licence.
Note: Even if you are ‘crowdfunding’ – a form of online fundraising using certain websites to ask for donations from the public for appeals – you will likely need an authority if you are fundraising for the community as a result of a disaster.
Visit apply for an authority to fundraise for more information on the steps required to obtain an authority to fundraise.
Beware of bogus fundraising or scammers
Fake charity scammers may pose as a real charity in person or online. If you want to make sure the fundraiser you are dealing with is genuine: