Aussie Helpers cleared by charities regulator.
The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) has acknowledged the “full cooperation” of rural assistance charity Aussie Helpers after a six-month investigation cleared the organisation of inappropriate financial conduct.
Aussie Helpers, which supports hundreds of farming families each year, first approached the Commission in October 2018 for confirmation that it was meeting its reporting obligations. The approach was in response to a number of adverse claims on social media.
A defamation case in relation to those claims is currently before the courts.
The ACNC confirmed Aussie Helpers’ reporting compliance, but also elected to launch a more thorough investigation of the charity’s processes.
Aussie Helpers CEO Natasha Kocks said she welcomed the Commission’s findings and was proud to share the news with the volunteers and supporters who worked hard to help Australian farmers.
“The ACNC has found that the money donated to help Aussie farmers goes exactly where we say it does, which is into the pockets of Aussie farmers who are in need,” Ms Kocks said.
“The only requirements that have been raised by the ACNC are updates to some of our systems, processes and policies. Mum and Dad started Aussie Helpers with a $20 raffle, and we’ve grown so fast since then. It’s not surprising that there are some internal protocols that need to be brought up to speed.
“We welcome these suggestions and thank the ACNC for the assistance.
“I would like to also thank the members of the community who’ve continued to support Aussie Helpers and donate over the course of the investigation. Your donations have kept farming families going.
Ms Kocks said in the past year, Aussie Helpers received $8.3 million in generous donations, and had already passed on 83.5 per cent of the funds straight into the hands of struggling farmers.
“As expected of all charities, there are operational costs of running a non-profit, such as transporting donations or covering overheads, so to be able to deliver such a huge amount directly to farmers is a fantastic effort.”
Addressing the defamation suit, Ms Kocks said it was important for Aussie Helpers to clear its name.
“We want to move forward and focus on one thing, and that’s supporting rural Australians experiencing poverty, social isolation and hardship.
“We would like to encourage anyone wanting to support farmers and their families to make a donation or volunteer their time.
“You could save a life.”
To find out more about Aussie Helpers, visit aussiehelpers.org.au
– Ends –
About Aussie Helpers
Aussie Helpers is a rural charity founded in 2002 by Brian and Nerida Egan. The non-profit began with a $20 raffle and has now grown into one of Australia’s largest charities providing assistance to struggling farmers. To date, Aussie Helpers has assisted more than 13,000 farming families through financial aid, supply donations, education support, mental health support and more. Co-founder Brian Egan has received many accolades for his efforts to help farming families, having previously won the Pride of Australia Medal and Senior Queensland Australian of the Year. In 2019, he was nominated for another Australian of the Year award. Nerida Egan was also nominated for Australian of the Year in 2016, as well as Who’s Who of Australian Courageous Women in 2010.
Laura Kane – Cole Lawson Communications
(07) 3221 2220
0411 424 900