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5 min read

GiveOUT to help out

Profile of Claudia Bellote
Written by Claudia BellotePosted on 4/11/2021

It’s a little-known fact that despite 11% of Australians identifying as being of diverse gender or sexuality, less than 50 cents for every $100 donated to charity in Australia goes to LGBTIQ+ communities.

“Rainbow communities receive very little funding in Australia, yet the need within these communities is high,” says Georgia Mathews, GiveOUT Founder and Philanthropy & Engagement Lead at Australian Communities Foundation.

LGBTIQ+ organisations and community groups already do so much with very little

“While marriage equality was an incredible leap forward, past and persisting injustice and exclusion mean we still see LGBTIQ+ folks over-represented in figures related to bullying, violence, homelessness and health.

“LGBTIQ+ organisations and community groups already do so much with very little,” Georgia points out. But GiveOUT is working to change the story and get more funds flowing to these communities.

A national day of giving for LGBTIQ+ communities

GiveOUT recently celebrated its third annual GiveOUT Day (15 October 2021) – a national day of giving, where LGBTIQ+ community groups are supported by the GiveOUT platform to raise funds for their cause. Donations are matched on the day by GiveOUT and partners, incentivising supporters to make a contribution and have their impact doubled.

Raising around $250,000 for LGBTIQ+ community groups across its first two years, GiveOUT Day smashed its targets for 2021 with over $320,000 being raised for nearly 80 LGBTIQ+ community groups participating in the day.

“It’s all thanks to the momentum we’ve been building with partners, participating groups and the broader community” says Georgia. “Partners are seeing that it works and getting on board.

“The incredible LGBTIQ+ community groups doing the work are also just so enthusiastic once on board. It took a lot of outreach to get the kind of engagement we got this year, but once the groups know who we are and understand how we’re trying to support them, they start spreading the word too.

“We’ve got a bit of our own capacity operationally now too, and a really great small team: Program Manager Tracey Martinovich and Comms Coordinator Ailsa Traves. They’re a driving force. We also piloted a peer-to-peer fundraising stream this year, GiveOUT Champions, which we will definitely be embedding in 2022 and beyond.”

Growing the pot of gold under the rainbow at ACF

In 2019 the team at Australian Communities Foundation launched the ACF Staff Fund.

“The focus is to support smaller initiatives that may otherwise struggle to attract funding,” says current Co-Chair of the Fund, Madeleine Shea, Executive Assistant & Officer Manager.

With this in mind, the Staff Fund Committee quickly identified GiveOUT Day as an opportunity to support underfunded initiatives seeking donations.

“We know that LGBTIQ+ community groups are already underfunded in general, but the GiveOUT platform also enabled us to identify projects that were struggling to meet their fundraising goal,” says Madeleine. “GiveOUT’s matched funding initiative also meant we could double our impact for groups in need of support.”

One of the organisations the ACF Staff Fund supported, Rural Rainbows, aims to achieve an environment where regional and rural LGBTIQ+ communities feel safe, valued, visible and connected to wider community and services. Rural Rainbows plans to use funds raised from GiveOUT Day to host more clothing swap events.

“Clothing swap events are a great way for genderqueer people to experiment with clothing and bring home a new wardrobe,” says Dayna Norris, Secretary at Rural Rainbows.

“They also provide a safe space for information sharing and getting the word out there about other community groups who are able to help rural LGBTQIA+ people.”

Madeleine says it’s hearing stories like these at ACF that motivated her to get involved with the Staff Fund.

“We come across so many incredible funding opportunities and projects at ACF. I’ve enjoyed getting to know these projects well through the Staff Fund and being able to support them together as a team.

 “I’ve learned how genuinely enthusiastic the ACF team is about our work. When we decided to grant through GiveOUT, everyone jumped in straight away to make it happen.”

We want LGBTIQ+ organisations thinking big about what’s possible in terms of structural change and having the resources they need to achieve it

Georgia was delighted to see the ACF Staff Fund get behind the day.

“Getting more and more people on board is the key to LGBTIQ+ communities receiving the support they need to thrive. We want LGBTIQ+ organisations thinking big about what’s possible in terms of structural change and having the resources they need to achieve it, rather than being in survival mode.”

Learn more about GiveOUT here

ACF Staff Fund

Supporting some of the smaller projects that cross our desk that may otherwise struggle to attract funding.