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Charity events in the spotlight

2 min read

Ben King from King Performance, who works closely with Whitelion, kicked off the session with a compelling DVD presentation of last year’s Whitelion Bail Out, which raised $360,000 for vulnerable and high risk young people.

King spoke about how Whitelion has built up its fundraising revenue over the past few years through the Bail Out initiative, which is now the organisation’s main annual fundraising event and this year brought in $250,000.

General Manager of the Leukaemia Foundation Stephanie Hechenberger spoke about the organisation’s fundraising goals and national initiatives, highlighting the success of the organisation’s annual World’s Greatest Shave campaign.

Executive Director of Epworth Medical Foundation Stephen May mentioned the importance of organisations being able to diversify in terms of events, particularly in an environment where so many not-for-profits and charities are “competing for the same dollar” from donors, sponsors and supporters. He also spoke of the great importance of corporate sponsorship for events, if the organisation was looking to turn strong profits.

Zelda Tupicoff, Editor of Third Sector magazine, spoke about current conditions in the sector, the impact of the decline in corporate support and the need for a diverse fundraising portfolio in this economic climate.

She highlighted the trend toward ‘Charity 2.0 Events’ – as coined by US-based social networking technology expert Beth Kanter – which enable supporters to hold their own events on behalf of the cause they support by leveraging online social networks to invite friends to the event. It was mentioned that such successful efforts have been made through events like Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea, World’s Greatest Shave, and Movember.

Tupicoff wrapped up her talk on a positive note, saying that despite currently unfavourable conditions, there are many positive signs and opportunities regarding supporter engagement, and that it is up to charities to harness that good will and embrace new technology to activate supporters and their friends.

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