Radio interview | ABC Radio Adelaide

Journalist: Sonya Feldhoff

Interview with: Lisa Grinham, CEO, Good2Give

Program: Early Afternoons

Aired: 30 Jan 2020


Lisa states that charities need to apply very stringent due diligence around where they are distributing the money. Lisa says while the Red Cross has been in the media recently, they have decades of experience in dealing with emergency relief situations. The Red Cross has confirmed that all the money that they’ve raised for the bushfire crisis will be distributed in due course to support those impacted.

She says as the communities can take up to 10 years to fully recover, charities are being very prudent and making sure that there is enough money to support communities and individuals in many years to come. She reminds people who are concerned about where their money goes to make sure the charity is a registered one and to ask the charity to provide tax receipts.

Excerpts from the interview:


We’ve heard stories of people who’ve been inundated, deluged with donations and money, which is great. Except that it often becomes a burden on how to distribute that money. There are costs even with attributing that money. Because you can’t just give it to the first people that come to you with their handout, can you?

Lisa Grinham

You’re absolutely right, Sonya. That’s what the charities do. They need to apply very stringent diligence around where they are actually distributing the money. The Red Cross has been in the media a lot in the last week or so. The Red Cross has got decades of experience in dealing with emergency relief situation. They will know that you need to get money on the ground immediately when a disaster is unfolding. But then you also need to invest later on. You need to invest in the recovery and the rebuilding of these communities.

The reality is that this can actually take many, many years. We know that from history where we’ve had other disasters in Australia such as the devastating bushfires in Victoria in 2009. Some of those communities took up the ten years to fully recover.


If people are concerned about where their money goes and how it’s not being used wisely, what are some of the red flags that should make you prick up your ears?

Lisa Grinham

I would be asking whether or not they are a registered charity. We have a charity regulator in the sector called the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission. They’ve got a website you can go and Google it and find it out.

The other thing you can do is to ask the charity to provide you with a tax receipt. If they say they can’t provide you with a tax receipt, then that should be a little bit of a red flag as well. Because that would indicate that they are not a registered charity. Also, if they have a website, if they have a website you can check them out.

But look, at the end of the day it is definitely a case of buyer beware. If you’re not sure about who’s asking you for money, make sure that you actually make your donations to an organisation that you know, and you trust.


What are you noticing about workplace giving? Is it dropping off now?

Lisa Grinham

Certainly, the wake of the 6th of January was extraordinary in terms of the outpouring of support, not only within Australia, but globally. So, we’re working with our counterparts in the UK and the US, for example. It’s been extraordinary to see how those communities are actually outreaching to people who live in the UK and the US, and donations are flowing through.

Lisa Grinham

So, I think that, whilst there certainly has been a peak, what we would like to encourage people to do now is to think about that medium- to long-term and, maybe, encourage people to give a regular donation from their pay.

Lisa Grinham

What always inspires us is how Australians rally in times of need. We have seen one in two Australians are giving to support charities supporting the bushfires. So, I think that just says a hell of a lot about the Aussie mate in our psyche, that we want to help a mate when they’re in need. So, I think, out of something catastrophic, we’re hearing great stories of hope for the future, and I think that that’s what we need to focus on.