24 April 2012 by barb
On Friday April 20, 2012, Liat and I had a busy day down in Melbourne trying to drum up some business support.
As regular readers know, when you donate to one of our appeals, 100% of your donation goes to that appeal – we don’t even take out the credit card fees that we incur. We are only able to do that because we have a small group of dedicated business supporters that help to cover the overheads associated with running our charity. We can’t do what we do without them. They are our lifeblood.
Over the two and half years since our public launch an interesting thing has happened. As you’d expect, as we grow, and word spreads about what we do, we get busier. Each year the number of applications for assistance we receive grows 6-fold. The number of donations we receive grows 11-fold, but here’s where it gets interesting: the amount of business support that we receive hasn’t grown at all. And that’s a problem.
The reality for I Give A Buck at the moment is that we’re at quite a tipping point. The Foundation is run solely by myself and Liat Harrower – and I only have Liat for 20 hours a week – we do absolutely everything between us. If we are to continue to grow to keep up with the rate of applications for assistance, we’re going to have to hire someone to help. But at the moment we can’t afford to do that because we don’t have enough business support.
First up Decjuba. WOW! We were just amazed at the response we received. Liat and I met with the lovely Tania Austin and Lisa Atley and what an incredible meeting it was. The girls are both just beautiful souls and so ‘get’ what we do and how critically important it is to make sure that we are able to keep doing it. They are totally on board with helping financially as well as helping us to reach a greater audience and embark on some capacity building initiatives that we’ve been deferring due to lack of funding (like building a new, more reliable and flexible web site).
We walked out of this meeting on an absolute high and are really looking forward to working more closely with the whole team at Decjuba – and having fun doing it.
Next up, Sand Hill Road and the boys behind Karma Kegs. And they just floored us too! Brothers Andy and Matt Mullins and friends Tom Birch and Doug Maskiell are a whirlwind of energy and ideas – they’d need to be – not only do they currently own 5 of Melbourne’s hottest pubs (with more in the planning) but they are also award-winning film makers through their Sand Hill Road Pictures venture.
Where they find the time and energy to put thought and care into our little charity on top of all that I’ll never understand. But they do. And they want to do more. And we love them for it. The boys will be continuing to support our various appeals and programs via Karma Kegs, have offered their AMAZING office space to us for meetings etc., have wonderful ideas for growing our profile and are looking to help us in any way they can into the future.
Finally, Bunnings Group. We met with John Gillam, Managing Director of Bunnings and Officeworks, and Nicole Baker, Internal Communications Manager. As you’d perhaps expect with a large organisation (which inherently means more process and procedure to follow and consider) there were fewer immediate commitments in this meeting. John brought with him the good news that they would be making a $2,500 donation each April – which is fantastic – and gave us almost an hour and a half of his time, during which we spoke about numerous possible opportunities to work together to assist the IGAB kids.
Most promising is the option of perhaps re-instating their previously lapsed Employee Workplace Giving Program – whereby each staff member could be asked to donate $1 per pay. Bunnings and Officeworks have large employee numbers so this program would be incredibly helpful in securing our future.
All in all a great day. A fantastic day actually. Now all we have to do is get it all happening!
Barb Blashki – Founder