You may recall the VFFA publishing a series of posts titled Was the attack on the fundraising activities of the RFSA justified?
Good News from Ray Hadley…. The ACCC is announcing, Charities risk stiff fines if they outsource their fundraising to companies that hound potential donors.
Charities have become big business. Mr Hadley suggests that you donate directly to your local brigade.
The RFSA telemarketing scandal has damaged the reputation of the RFSA as seen in this newspaper editorial.
We are still waiting to find out how much was spent on the RFSA birthday celebrations at Penrith Panthers using money donated by the public.
The Rural Fire Service Association (RFSA) will not disclose how much their 20th Anniversary celebrations cost and where the money came from.
Did attendees make a contribution?
Did Panthers do the RFSA a special deal?
Were special guests looked after in the, now famous RFSA “Gala” style?
Were there any special guests flown in and at what cost?
Was it all paid for using RFSA funds that were generated from generous public donations and raffle ticket sales?
How many new style firefighting helmets, radios or other much sought after items could this event (and others like it) have funded?
Perhaps those who have made donations and purchased raffle tickets will think twice before doing so again unless the RFSA provides a great deal more transparency.
Rural communities are not impressed. The VFFA campaign to put the RURAL back into the Rural Fire Service will continue…. the next state election will be interesting.
This part in our series displays an email thread dating back to early 2010. It is being provided as an example that others have raised concerns about the fund raising activities of the RFSA long before the recent newspaper exposure.
“Since originally researching this I have spoken to several people who have purchased the raffle tickets. Every one of them believes that they are contributing to the RFS. When I suggest that only 10% of their purchase ends up with the RFS they are clearly upset. Mostly these people are elderly and what I would consider “soft” marketing targets. I believe the telemarketers take advantage of their willingness to help and once they have made a purchase, they are placed on a call back list to repeatedly be sought for future ticket purchases.”
The context of this “Media Watch” post can easily be applied to the RFSA and their fund raising model. If you want your donations to benefit your local firefighters then give your money directly to them…
A national survey of more than 1600 18- to 89-year-old Australians found that one in four were receiving unwanted calls from charities on a weekly basis. When it came to older Australians, 72 per cent of 65- to 89-years-olds had received persistent requests for money from charities over the phone.
National Seniors CEO Dagmar Parsons said it had reached the point where many older Australians were considering disconnecting their landlines. “We are hearing from our members that the calls are making them anxious and they are reluctant to answer the phone,” she said.
Almost 70 per cent of those surveyed had their landline listed on the Do Not Call register and 32 per cent had their mobile number listed.
But charities are one of the few exempt groups permitted to call numbers on the register. Both National Seniors and CHOICE are now calling for a change in the legislation, allowing people to opt out of any call asking for money.