Corporates Put Their Money Where Their Mouth Is

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2nd September 2010, 09:51am - Views: 792

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September 2010


Media release

Corporates put their money where their mouth is

They’re buzz words seen in numerous annual reports each year, corporate social

responsibility, but is it real or just rhetoric? Would a TV station, an insurance

company  or youth electronics supplier really put their hands in their pockets?

Australia doesn’t have the strong philanthropic corporate culture seen in some

other countries, but that is starting to change. Queensland charity ACT for Kids

has been overwhelmed by the commitment and generosity of many of their

corporate supporters, and it’s not just money that matters.

ACT for Kids is a not-for-profit organisation providing free professional therapy

to treat and prevent child abuse and neglect across Queensland. Chairman Denis

Loaney said they are often amazed at the level of support they receive from


“This year particularly we’ve noticed a surge in support. Our inaugural Channel

Seven/ACT for Kids Appeal started with support from Channel Seven Brisbane

and has seen a ground swell of generosity.

“Budget Direct heard about the appeal and realised we needed a call centre to

take the donation calls we hope to receive. They’ve established a purpose-built

call centre, developed software specifically for us and many of their staff will sit

alongside our volunteers to taking calls throughout the appeal in Child

Protection Week.

“We could never afford to pay for that, and the time, infrastructure and genuine

enthusiasm they’ve invested in us is humbling,” Denis said.

Director of IT for Budget Direct Paul Malt said it was their turn to give back to

the community and as experts in their field they were honoured to help out. 

“We’ve built a system that’s user friendly so volunteers along with Budget Direct

staff can get on the phones with minimal training. The system itself took more

than two weeks to build. We’ve also created a bespoke telephone IVR system to

support the ACT for Kids telephone queue.

“As an insurer we are equipped to handle an influx of calls similar to those in

emergency situations like storm events so our staff are on the ground and ready

to support this worthy cause,” Paul said.

There are also benefits for businesses who engage with charities. General

Manager of Conexus Consulting, Lesley-Anne Houghton, said their team have

reaped rewards supporting ACT for Kids.

“It provides our team with a strong sense of purpose and employee satisfaction.

It is great as individuals and as a team to feel that we are contributing and

making a difference to our community. 

MORE 1 of 2

ACT for Kids is an Australian

charity providing free professional

therapy to treat and prevent child


Previously known as the Abused

Child Trust, we have helped

thousands of children affected by

abuse and neglect since 1988. 

Did you know?

In 2008-09, there were

339,454 reports made to

child protection services in

Australia. Authorities found

abuse claims were

substantiated in 54,621


The rate of abuse has more

than doubled over the past

10 years.

The number of children

being removed from their

parents has also doubled

over the past decade. At 30

June 2009, there were

34,069 young people in out-

of-home care.

The Australian Government

and State and Territory

governments announced in

2009 a national, long-term

approach for protecting

Australia’s children. ACT for

Kids is part of a coalition

working to ensure these

reforms produce better

protection for children.

ACT for Kids is calling on the

Australian Government to

make the ‘baby bonus’

contingent upon new

parents completing a basic

parenting course.

PAGE 2: Corporates put their money where their mouth is

“We initially began providing financial donations a couple of years ago as part of ACT for Kids’ Christmas

Appeal.  We have since developed more of a partnership and provided more support in the areas that

we operate in – leadership and team development and strategic planning – as well as continue to

provide financial support.

“Our team will also be shaking donation cans and answering the phones during the appeal to help with

their fundraising,” Lesley-Anne said.

There are so many charities, how does a business decide which one to support? Director of E3 Style,

Vanessa Garrard, said they took a novel approach to choose their charity partner.

“We decided we wanted to put something back into the community but we really didn’t know where to

start. We took a slightly unusual approach and put an ad in the paper explaining that we wanted to do

some charity work and asking organisations to contact us.

“ACT for Kids is also a great fit for us, we work with electronics products and we’re the largest supplier

of youth electronics so working with an organisation that does great work with kids and young people

was important to us.

“We’ve volunteered in a few different ways, providing free graphic design for the ACT for Kids Platinum

Class Lottery brochures and we had the whole team out at the Wooloowin centre earlier this year

painting the office and teachers’ room. We had 14 of our team there and worked out it cost us about

$6,000 in paint and people. We enjoyed it and they were so thankful, we’ve committed to doing that

each year,” Vanessa said.


Perhaps Queensland businesses, large and small, are opening their eyes after the GFC and putting their

hands in their pockets.

ACT for Kids Executive Chairman, Denis Loaney, said that with so many confirmed cases of child abuse,

they need all the support they can get and have good reason to set the ambitious target of raising

$500,000 during the Channel Seven/ACT for Kids Appeal.

“We’ve been providing free professional therapy to treat and prevent child abuse across Queensland for

over 20 years. The need for our professional services continues to increase and we want to reach out to

all of the children and families affected by child abuse and neglect, but we need help to fund that

support,” Denis said.

ACT for Kids therapy centres located in Weipa, Cairns, Townsville, Gold Coast and Brisbane operate

outreach and remote services throughout Queensland. The Channel Seven/ACT for Kids Appeal runs 3-

1300 228 000.



ACT for Kids Communication and PR Manager

Kelly Morgan 07 3857 8866 or 0409 751 622

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