It’s the start of a new year and if you’re anything like the MoM team, this is the first week where you’ve had a little time to breathe.
It’s also one of the first times you might be turning back to your ‘to do’ list and also revisiting some of the commitments and intentions you set at the start of the year. Doesn’t it seem so long ago now? One of our intentions for this year was to find a charity and give back more than we have in previous years. There are so many businesses but more importantly families and children in our own backyards who are DOING IT SO TOUGH.
It seems it’s not only us that are thinking like this; we’ve had quite a few questions come in from members looking for advice and direction when it comes to finding a charity to support and understanding how they can be involved. From all the questions and comments that have been flowing in, there have been a few areas that are good for us all to consider when thinking charity …
What should I look for when choosing a charity?
Earlier this year, we had a MoM Member ask us to put this question to our audience for advice. Rightly so, she wanted to know what to look for when choosing a charity given there are so many! Here’s what she posted:
You can see from the number of people this post reached and the number of comments, it’s a hot topic with everyone! We love that so many of our members and their friends had advice that was so useful.
Shannon said “Investigate thoroughly. Check how much funding actually goes towards the fund. Check they’re Australian owned and operated and that they are registered as an Australian Not-for-profit.”
Maikara has some really good points when she wrote “Make sure it can be dispersed where you think your donating it too. As in read the fine print as some “charities” can only disperse to specified areas in there terms and conditions”
Rebecca “Yes, I agree – look into how charities spend their money. For example how much is used on administration fees rather than going directly to the cause” We wondered where you would find out this info and Angela advised “all charities have to publish their financial reports- a simple google search of the name of the charity followed by financial report.”
Kirstie shared “I donate to The Smith Family each month, I receive cards from the family that my money helps and it really makes me feel honoured in helping them the child I sponsor is the same age as my son and I’m just glad to give them a little help “
Some followers suggested that if a charity has a CEO or pays their staff, donations are not being used wisely. After understanding everything that is involved in running a charity so that the maximum results are achieved (it’s a MASSIVE job and no charity could deliver effectively without professional staff), we agreed with Kathrine who said “I don’t think that seeing if a charity pays its staff is a mark of merit. I work for a NFP that pays its staff through our recycling businesses so all or other fundraising and donations can directly be if it the community. If you give a donation to a charity with DGR or deductible gift recipient status you can get a tax receipt that you can claim on your income tax and be able to give again. I would certainly make sure that it is a registered charity.”
Read all the comments from MoM Facebook followers here>
Discovering charities that your children can relate to …
One member really wanted to get her children involved. To have them understand the concept of GIVING BACK. She asked our community what would be top of the list when choosing a charity for their family (and particularly the kids) to support.
Cheyanne had some great suggestions “I’d pick a few different ones – like an animal rescue, one related to a school (like giving kids breakfast or school supplies or clothes etc), one doing things for homeless people, one related to sick kids in hospital etc – and explain to your kids what these charities do and why the people who benefit need the help …. And see which they are drawn to?”
Karen said “We chose our charities based on interests. My husband has been a long time Sponsor for World Vision (as long as I have known him). We also support the Smith Family because I used to be a teacher and now that I am a Mum, I want to make sure other kids have the same opportunities as my girls.”
Lynsey “Tailor it to each kid’s interests or ages. Like the one who loves animals can pick a no kill shelter or a teenager can put together a few backpacks for teens in care.”
Brooke suggested that rather than each child having a separate charity, they could “pool your money and sponsor a child through the Smith Family. They help children living in poverty with school needs like supplies, uniforms and excursions to help give them a strong start to life. Would also reinforce the importance of school with your own children.”
We love all these suggestions and ideas but particularly like the idea of keeping it local and making it really relevant to the children. If they understood exactly what was involved in getting them off to school and the impact of children not finishing school, it really would help them understand how important an education is.
See all the charity suggestions from MoM Facebook followers here>
While we’re on the importance of school, we thought we’d jump in with a few facts we’ve picked up in our own sponsorship journey with The Smith Family.
- Today, there are more than 1.2m Australian children and young people living in poverty.
- Disadvantaged students have significantly lower Year 12 completion rates.
- Disadvantaged students are on average 2-3 years behind in reading and maths by the time they are 15 years old.
These statistics are not widely known and it’s alarming just how many families in our own back yard are affected. It’s certainly got us thinking!
So much so in fact that our Founder, Nikki, and her family decided to sponsor a child to get them all the way through school. Nikki (and her girls) talk about this below …
The need for more sponsors is very real.
In Australia, one in every six children are living in poverty right now – this means that there are children going to school who don’t have access to the bare necessities because of their circumstances.
As we enter a new school year, there is a lot of pressure for families who are struggling financially to keep up with schooling requirements that offer the right skills and resources for children to complete their education confidently.
Because of this, sponsorship is more important than ever and every single sponsorship creates instant opportunity and support for the children who need it most.
The Smith Family understands that not all children get an equal start to life, and by creating opportunities through their sponsorship program, they’re not just creating support systems, but better futures for these disadvantaged children.
The Smith Family works with 741 partner schools in some of the most disadvantaged communities across Australia (in 91 communities)
Join the MoM Team and sponsor a child today.
Our family and the families at MoM HQ are all committed to changing the lives of Australian children living in poverty. We are committed to getting them off to school and having access to all the resources and support to ensure they will thrive throughout their education journey.
Make the decision to break the child poverty cycle for just one child today. If we all get one more child back to school this year, just think of the difference we have made to so many young lives.