The impact of charities

The Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission has released a fact sheet on understanding charity impact.

PCYC NSW values the financial and in-kind support given by countless thousands of people and companies.

What is charity impact?

Every charity has a mission that is associated with producing a public benefit. As this mission is pursued, the changes produced in individuals and their communities can be referred to as the charity’s “impact”. If you are donating to a charity, you may wish to make sure that your donation is creating the greatest impact possible.

There are steps you can take to maximise the impact of a charity’s work. The first step is to make sure you are donating to a legitimate organisation. The second step is to choose a charity that will deliver the most positive impact it can with your donation.

There is nothing wrong with giving to a charity you know and trust, but sometimes you will want to look at other factors to help you decide who to help.

Factors that affect confidence in your donation

Personal connection with a charity

Many donors have a personal connection with the charity they are giving to. They may have received services themselves, knows someone who has, or they may have volunteered or worked for the charity. First-hand information gives donors confidence that their donation will do what they want it to.

How you interpret a charity’s information

You can find out information about a registered charity’s charitable purpose, who it helps, where it operates, and more information by looking at its entry page on the ACNC Register. Many charities also have information on their websites. This may include links to evaluations, research papers and annual reports. Information on impact is often included in annual reports or newsletters.

When looking at an annual report or evaluation of results, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Is it clear what the charity was trying to achieve and how its activities worked towards its objectives? Would you like your money to support these objectives?
  2. Did the charity collect and communicate useful information about how well it is achieving these objectives? Do you have enough information and do you understand it?
  3. Does it seem like this charity is responding to the information and feedback they are receiving? Have they told you how they are going to improve?

 

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