· The Channel goes live across Australia in unprecedented fundraising effort
· Australian LGBTQIA+ community and projects to benefit from the coordinated philanthropic effort
· The bar has been set to raise $100,000 in 2017
For the first time in Australian history, members of the Australia’s LGBTQIA+ community will benefit from a focused and coordinated funding initiative.
Driven by a newly established group, The Channel, it will bring together members from the queer and philanthropic communities.
The Channel’s mission: to change the way Australians experience gender and sexuality for the better, through philanthropy.
The initiative is now live, and has started accepting donations from its first round of Founding Members.
The group has an ambitious goal to grant $100,000 to LGBTQIA+ opportunities by the end of 2017.
Traditionally, a giving circle is a group of individuals who pool their donations and decide on a not-for-profit or community program to give to.
They also serve as a conduit to increase both awareness and engagement in the issues funded.
In some instances, members also choose to contribute their time and expertise.
Only around 10 are in operation in Australia to date.
Anyone can join as a Member of The Channel, with the option to make a monthly donation of $25, $50 or $100, according to their capacity to give.
Potential recipients of the funds raised are identified through Members’ own research, networks and promotion. All members get one vote as to where grants are distributed.
Board Director, and LGBTQIa+ political leader, Neil Pharaoh, said it was a great opportunity to turn contributions from the LGBTQIA+ community into meaningful projects and outcomes.
“It is a fantastic and innovative way to encourage philanthropy, and support a variety of LGBTQIA+ projects,” he said.
The Channel is a community-lead initiative with plans for membership to comprise of LGBTQIA+ community members and allies.
A primary goal is to bring young people and those with diverse backgrounds to philanthropy.
The Channel’s Founder Georgia Mathews said The Channel was born out of a recognition that there is great social change work being done in the Australian queer community, but funding is very scarce.
“There’s not a lot of data on LGBTQIA+ giving in Australia. However, in the States, for every $100 awarded by foundations only 28 cents go to LGBTQIA+ issues. That’s less than any other minority group," she said.
The Channel will also play an advocacy role within mainstream philanthropy, build engagement with community through events and campaigns and educate Members about effective giving and the LGBTQIA+ focus area.
You can find out more and sign up as a Member of The Channel at www.the-channel.org
Everyone who joins in the first year will be a Founding Member.
The Channel Sub-fund is hosted by The Gay and Lesbian Foundation of Australia (GALFA). GALFA aims to provide funds for charitable activities/organisations which have as their sole or chief purpose/outcome, the good and betterment of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex people and allied communities, in Australia.
The Channel's Grants Committee makes recommendations to GALFA in accordance with projects that Members have elected to fund.
Media Contact: Neil Pharaoh - 0414 833 590