Two major things Australia is changing in philanthropy

Recently, we at Optimy followed the Philanthropy Australia National Conference which was held in Sydney on September 21st/22nd. This year’s event was titled ‘’Evolution or Revolution: is philanthropy future ready?’’.

It covered topics about how philanthropy features in an ever-changing society and what is needed to succeed. As Audette Exel, Founder and Chair of the Adara Group pointed out: ‘We need to hold onto the beauty and power of traditional philanthropy, whilst at the same time being open to innovation in the sector.’  So, if the sector is eager to change, what are the next steps to take?

“We need to hold onto the beauty and power of traditional philanthropy, whilst at the same time being open to innovation in the sector”

1. Generational diversity

The next generation of philanthropists at this year’s Philanthropy Australia conference made it perfectly clear that they would prefer to be known as ‘’change-makers’’ or ‘’social entrepreneurs’’, and so, are ‘’consciously uncoupling’’ from being known as philanthropists. 

According to Marisa Mandile, a Management Consultant at Philanthropy Squared, ‘It appears today, as discussed at the conference, the title of philanthropist is marred with out-of-date connotations for this next-gen crowd and does not reflect their modes of giving.’ Millennials all around the world are challenging the current traditional philanthropic set-up and wanting to focus on transparency. They obviously want to see immediate change and are willing to donate their money, time and skills now.

2. Collaborate

Collaboration and the need to build the eco-system were another two highlighted points in the conference. Additionally, John McCarthy from the Tindall Foundation stated that supporting a positive social change needs to be a collective effort that tries to build a pipeline of investable social businesses.

So in times when the market for community investment is evolving fast and new challenges are arising how technology could help the sector to be fully prepared to the future? To manage grants better and move forward to the future, we encourage philanthropists of all generations to embrace digitalization and benefit from the softwares like Optimy developed to save more than 50% of their time from collecting key data, comparing or managing projects, reporting and assessing the impact of their grant activities. Change is afoot in the sector and technology is there to support philanthropist to invest intelligently and contribute to positive social change.


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