Long-time donor Frank Dibble is bucking a downward trend of Australians giving to charity.
As of March 2018, 61 per cent of Australians gave to charity at least once over 12 months – a steep drop from the September 2011 figure of 70 per cent (Roy Morgan).
And while the reasons for this are varied (sluggish wage growth among the most popular reported), the fact remains many charities rely on donations to keep their services alive.
As a non-profit organisation, VMCH relies on community support to fund many of its capital works projects and programs.
Our specialist school St Paul’s College is a major beneficiary of community generosity, including more than $230,000 donated so far to a more modern and accessible educational site at Balwyn.
Frank’s daughter Melissa, aged 47, was a student of St Paul’s College 37 years ago. Though it’s been decades since she graduated, Frank’s chosen to remain a donor and continue supporting the school that had a profound effect on his daughter.
“St Paul’s was very special to Melissa; she learnt a great deal and to a very high standard. Without it (St Paul’s), it’s quite possible she’d be a totally different person, not the social woman she is who is able to mix with people the way she does.”
As well as ensuring future students have access to the “marvellous” education his daughter had, Frank, aged 88, says he also gives to show “appreciation” and stay connected to VMCH.
VMCH Fundraising and Events Manager Dianne Taylor says Frank is typical of VMCH’s main donor base; older Victorians with a personal link to the organisation.
“We are so grateful for devoted donors like Frank who continue to support us year after year. With 54,000 registered charities in Australia, it’s a very competitive field from which to attract donations. Our struggle to attract new loyal donors reflects a common problem across the fundraising landscape.”
Giving Australia reports many people do not give because of concerns about how the money would be used.
“Though we have specific fundraising campaigns to support a one-off project, people can also donate and specify a particular area, such as an aged care site or early intervention program, where they’d like their money to go.”
Dianne also said simple measures such as checking a charity’s legitimacy via the ACNC Charity Register could help ease worries.
“Giving to charity is a legacy that lives on for generations and we’re very grateful to donors like Frank whose generosity means a brighter future for the people we support.”
If you’d like to make a donation to VMCH, call (03) 9926 2066 or visit: vmch.com.au/get-involved/make-a-donation/