OzBargain 2014 Christmas Charity Donations - $14,580 to Charities of Your Choice

UPDATE 18 Dec: The poll has finished and the top 4 charities for this Christmas are:

  • Doctors without Borders
  • RSPCA
  • Beyond Blue
  • Cancer Council Australia

They will be receiving $3,645 of donation each. Thanks to everyone who participated.

UPDATE 14 Dec: Please vote on the charities now we have all the suggestions. There are 258 unique commenters at this point thus OzBargain will donate $12,000 + $10 x 258 = $14,580 this Christmas. The top 4 voted charities will receive $3,645 of donation.


It's December and OzBargain has planned to donate at least $12,000 to the charities this Christmas. We have already made more than $50,000 contributions to various charity organisations in Australia over the last 3 years, and for this year the plan is a little bit different. We will be taking suggestions from the commenters again, similar to our last EoFY donation. However to be fair to each of the charities suggested, votes will not be allowed until I have got a full list of suggestions. So basically it would be in two stages — first I am getting the suggestions from the commenters, and then I'll reset votes on all the poll options so all of them would start out equal.

Moreover, like last year's Christmas donations, we will be donating $12,000 + $10 x number of unique commenters in this thread until this Saturday night. So for example if 300 user accounts commented in this post, we will then donate $12,000 + $10 x 300 = $15,000 to the charities.

We will pick the top 4 charities based on number of votes, and then equally distribute the total amount to those charity groups.

Timeline

The timeline would go like this:

  • 9 Dec — start taking suggestions
  • 13 Dec 11:59PM — suggestions closed, votes reset to 0 and let the voting start! Also count the number of unique commenters so far and update the total donation amount.
  • 17 Dec 11:59PM — voting closed. Top 4 charity groups chosen, which we will be donating to.
  • 18-24 Dec — OzBargain will donate to those charities picked

Now let the suggestion come in! If you are commenting on this post directly (not replying someone's comment), you shall see "Suggestion" there above the comment box. Put your choice of charity there + some reasons why this charity is worth donating to for this Christmas, and I'll add your suggestions to the poll.

Since it's Christmas, please think about which charity organisation would be good to donate to.

Suggestion Guidelines

Just a reminder. If you are suggesting a charity

  • Make sure "Suggestion" field is filled when you are making a top-level comment, so your suggestion would be added to the poll. It would be in the approval queue and I'll approve them when I get a chance.

  • In your comments please also link to the website. Under Poll Options you can click on the time to go to linked comment where the suggestion was made in the first place. It would be useful for others to see what the charity is about and able to go to the website to check it out.

Terms and Conditions

There are some rules…

  • Creating multiple accounts is against our terms of use and might get your accounts banned.
  • Banned accounts, unpublished comments etc do not count towards the tally

Poll Options expired

Comments

  • +2
    Suggested Legacy Australia

    My vote is for Legacy Australia. A very good cause, looking after Aussie servicemen/women, veterans and their families. Helping Legacy would help the many Australians involved in military operations overseas who can't be here with their families during the Christmas break.

  • +4
    Suggested Lifestyle and Activity Centre for Down Syndrome & Other Disabilities

    I'm going to pick an organic suggestion from this forum post. Kevan2's sister attends a Lifestyle and Activity Centre for Down Syndrome & other disabilities. As he stated in the post, they don't have spare funds. So if Kevan2 is willing to nominate the charity and if they take money donations, then this is my suggestion.

  • +9

    Seeing that it's Christmas and the thought of narcissistic morons buying puppies and kittens just for Christmas makes my blood boil.

    So no-kill shelters around the country. Rent, water, electricity and dog food isn't cheap.

    • You'll need to actually specify one by name adam, or your (wise/compassionate) suggestion will count for naught.

      • Lort Smith in Victoria do excellent work for animals. What about them?

        • Lort Smith it is! Don't really know any, just suggested we shift away from cancer which only really funds drug companies when you think about it. Even the McGrath one which claim they focus on nurses is still just perpetuating the whole Big Pharma cartel.

          https://www.facebook.com/lortsmithhospital
          http://www.lortsmith.com/

        • +1

          @adamren:

          Yeah, Lort Smith is great. We got our cat from them.

        • @neil:

          What's the story with the stress cube?

        • @adamren:

          It was acquired was from this deal.

        • @neil: Ah clever. Good deal.

        • @adamren:

          That's probably true. A friend died of cancer and all they could do was give him loads of drugs which didn't help him but unfortunately sped up his demise (due to the health problems created associated with taking the drugs), they were VERY expensive drugs and they didn't work at all.

      • Why not $1,000 to 12 random ones on a reputable list? 2 or 3 in each state?

        Ideally there'd be more education so idiots don't buy an animal then abandon it or mistreat it after they realise they don't have the maturity to care for it.

        All I know is that the Cancer Council has plenty of funds, they're huge. I'd much rather anyone else gets it but CC, but people are selfish and think of themselves first when it comes to charities. They think they'll get cancer one day too and want to reap their investment/donation.

  • +7
    Suggested Cancer Council Australia

    My suggestion is the Cancer Council

    • They do a wide range of things – support for cancer patients, research, advocacy, prevention/education.
    • They are non-denominational, and present in regional as well as urban areas, so they have the potential to impact most Australians.
    • They have won or been finalist in the PwC transparency awards a few times so they are upfront about how they spend their money – in the spirit of OzBargain! http://www.pwc.com.au/about-us/corporate-responsibility/tran...
    • Couldn't agree more.

      Cancer is a bitch of a disease we need to get rid of!

      It has touched my family twice in the last two years, the Cancer Council has always been there to help.

    • my vote also goes to the cancer council

    • Another vote here for the cancer council.

    • They've got my vote - my sister was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and CC has been great

    • +4

      Here's my take. Cancer Council, McGrath Foundation etc like many charities no doubt do a great job but they also have large incomes from donors and a high profile which gets them plenty of access to corporate Australia. Some have unacceptably high overheads and pay their CEOs ludicrous salaries out of monies raised for charitable works. I give monthly to a number of the larger ones so my preference is that:

      OzB donations should be directed to those with lower profiles who struggle to get traction.

  • +19
    Suggested RSPCA

    RSPCA. For all creatures, great and small.

    • +2

      They get my vote.

    • +2

      me too…

    • +1

      Completely agree, they are a fantastic charity that helps the most vulnerable and voiceless.

    • +2

      +1 for RSPCA

      • +1

        Another +1 from me for RSPCA!

    • +4

      RSPCA all the way. Although animals bring so much joy to our lives, generally they have no safety net in society, no voices of their own, and very few rights under the law.

      In his Nobel Peace Prize address, Albert Schweitzer said:
      "The human spirit is not dead. It lives on in secret…..It has come to believe that compassion, in which all ethics must take root, can only attain its full breadth and depth if it embraces all living creatures and does not limit itself to mankind."

      Having said all that, weighing one great cause against another is impossible. The important thing, is not which charity to give to, it's just to give.

      Proud to be a part of the OzBargain community.

      • +2

        Well said

        • +1
        • @escimojoe:

          Agreed!

          Donate to another of the animal charities please.

        • +1

          @escimojoe: Nooooo, that's not fair!

          The RSPCA do the best they can but are bound by Government and must act within the applicable legislation. I am guessing it must be awful for them to have to let these people go when some lawyer finds a loophole!

          What we all need to do, Federally, in every state of Australia and every local government area, is lobby our local government, MPs and senators to have that legislation changed.

        • +1

          @snook:

          Lawyer finds a loophole?

          Do you really know what you are talking about?

          I'm not saying don't donate to animal organisations just not rspca.

        • @treeman: Yes. I work for the government enacting and regulating legislation and it's all about the loopholes that people can find in that legislation and how it can be interpreted.

          Animal welfare protection legislation is particularly onerous.

    • Another vote from me

    • +2

      +1 Rspca

    • +1

      I vote for RSPCA.

      • +5

        I'll jump in with the RSPCA as well.
        A few days ago I came across a very malnourished horse (the thing was insanely skinny), and I rang the RPSCA to report the horse. They took all the details, and I can only hope they've been out to do something. I just wonder about some people… Feed your animals.

        PS. I'm giving away about 100 Steam games (in total) starting tomorrow for 12 days via Twitter: @AuSlade. Keep an eye out and if you manage to redeem a game. Let me know.

        Keep up the great work OzBargain. It was the selfless act of many of the posters here that made me think of the idea to give away all the spare games I have, rather than trying to trade them.

  • +7

    Autism Association.
    Always Autism Association for me.

    • +1

      I completely agree. It's a great cause

  • +2
    Suggested Autism Spectrum Australia

    Autism Spectrum Australia (Aspect) gets my nomination and vote

  • +14

    Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF)

    • On the ground saving lives in 3rd world countries where people just weren't born as fortunate as us for no fault of their own
    • Makes all our 1st world problems seem minute and irrelevant when we look at the work they do for people with very limited resources
    • We take for granted really basic stuff like Malaria and Chloera which kill millions each year in the 3rd world
    • No offence but it gives some perspective about people "doing it tough" here when they don't have christmas toys vs. people who don't even have access to clean water/sanitation

    http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/

      • 1 to MSF.
    • MSF has my vote, I've been a keen backer for this org. What they strive to achieve is truly inspiring.

    • +1 for MSF

  • +7

    +1 for Médecins Sans Frontières

    Once again they have my support because:

    • they do fantastic work worldwide
    • they're independent with no political or religious affiliations
    • they're transparent with their finances. Annual reports/ financial statements are independently audited.
    • low admin costs: last year, 80% of donations went towards actual field work and ongoing programs. 5% on administration.

    MSF Australia: http://www.msf.org.au

    • +1 to MSF, and thanks for the summary too.

  • +2

    RSPCA

  • +1

    The RSPCA has already been suggested, but I want to make sure it is not unduly left off the initial list this time, or compromised in any way as an option, as it was last time OzB donated to charities.
    So yes… like Glider (a small marsupial?), and Blaze (a horse?), I suggest:

    RSPCA

    Some of the reasons are:

    1. The RSPCA does great work, and relies heavily on donations.

    2. The animals they help cannot "help themselves", or even decide to end it all if their suffering gets too great; without the RSPCA, many dying animals in great pain would remain that way for a whole lot longer, before their suffering was relieved.

    3. The RSPCA uses some of the money they receive to maintain/increase awareness of animal rights and deter animal cruelty, by way of public awareness campaigns; such as periodic ads on TV ensuring that even children realise that being cruel to animals "for kicks" is not acceptable in Australia. I'm guessing this would not be high on the list of priorities for any government, in the absence of the RSPCA.

  • How is the $15k being funded, is it part of what you collect from Ozbargin site advertising, or something else?

  • +2
    Suggested Animal Aid

    This is a local organisation to Victoria so may not be relevant to many but as an alternative to RSPCA can I suggest Animal Aid http://www.animalaid.org.au/ They do some terrific work and receive no direct government funding. My partner has volunteered for them previously and they really do care for their animals and the effort and work they do for the little funding they receive really is amazing. Thanks scotty, neil etc. for once again doing this, it is a fantastic initiative.

  • Suggested The Alannah and Madeline Foundation

    The Alannah and Madeline Foundation, keeping children safe from violence

    Give a child a reason to smile.

    The Alannah and Madeline Foundation is a national charity protecting children from violence and its devastating effects. They care for children who have experienced or witnessed violence and run programs which prevent violence in the lives of children. They play an advocacy role and are a voice against childhood violence.

    Their programs are listed here

  • I suggest "Light for Life"
    http://lightforlife.org.au/

    This charity lights up the lives of people in need whose world has been darkened due to the loss of their loved ones from devastating impact of violence and terrorism.

  • Suggested Child's Play

    Child's Play, directly making life better for children in hospital.

  • Cancer Council gets my vote…because who doesn't know of someone who has succumbed to cancer?

    • Me.

  • +7
    Suggested Alzheimer's Australia

    I'd like to nominate Alzheimer's Australia for their commitment to help people living with dementia and their carers.

    • There are more than 332,000 Australians living with dementia, it is the third leading cause of death in Australia and there is no cure
    • An estimated 1.2 million people are involved in the care of a person with dementia

    Besides providing education, resources, support programs, they also contribute towards Australian dementia research.

    • +1

      I'd like to second this. I just last week lost my grandfather to this awful disease, it is incredibly important that people who's loved ones are suffering from Alzheimers are able to get the support they need.
      Keep in mind also that as Alzheimers effects the elderly, the support is needed just as much after the death of a spouse or father in order to deal with the changes to their lives.

      Definitely a worthy cause.

  • +2
    Suggested Vision Australia

    I'm nominating Vision Australia which supports people who are blind or have low vision. They offer a huge range of services, from aids and services, to reading radio stations, to assistance for employers in making their workplaces more low vision/blind friendly. They've been immensely helpful to an affected family member too :)

    • +2

      I would nominate Vision Australia as well. My 11 years old son Matthew was born with a genetic condition that affects 1 in every 17,000- 20,000 Australians called Oculocutaneous Albinism and as a result he has significant vision impairment and classed as ‘legally blind’.

      Vision Australia has been working with Matthew and our family since he was just three-months- old, and they have helped him in every step of his life. Vision Australia’s staff members have not only provided our family with guidance, but have been invaluable in helping him transition into Kindergarten and Primary School by providing educators with guidance on how to help to make his life a little bit easier.

      Vision Australia’s Children’s Services receives some funding to deliver services, but relies heavily on the funds raises from public donations to deliver far more than they are funded to do.

      Please help Vision Australia give kids like Matthew and others who are blind or have low vision the best possible start to life.

      Matthew is one of the official faces of the 2014 Vision Australia’s Carols by Candlelight and he will be on the big stage to perform at this year’s Carols by Candlelight on Christmas Eve which will be broadcasting live from the Sidney Myer Music Bowl on Channel 9.
      https://www.facebook.com/VisionAustralia/photos/a.4461893842...

      Matthew has set up a fundraising page to raise more fund for Vision Australia. Please check his link https://give.everydayhero.com/au/matthew-zhou or visit Vision Australia's light a candle website http://www.lightacandle.net.au/

      Thanks tplen1 for your nominating VA

      Thanks scotty ( would you be able to spread the word?)

  • I wish this can be placed as a "deal" so people can upvote it. Good job OzB! More power!

    I would like to nominate RFDS (Royal Flying Doctors), based on my first hand experience where they flew a colleague to Perth during a critical emergency.

  • Suggested Diabetes Australia

    Suggesting Diabetes Australia and Meals On Wheels, but also just want to add the extra $10 as a unique commenter. All charities are worthwhile in their own way.

    Good work again Scotty and all at OzBargain.

    • Hi. You can make multiple suggestions but for voting purpose I'll mark your existing suggestion as "Diabetes Australia". If you would like to also suggest Meals on Wheels, feel free to post a new comment.

  • +1
    Suggested Bravehearts

    Im nominating brave heart. They do a great deal of good for kids that have suffered sexual abuse and help prevent it. I've heard from a few families that have benefited from them greatly

    http://www.bravehearts.org.au/pages/about-us.php

  • +7
    Suggested Hamlin Fistula Hospital Ethiopia

    I'd like to nominate Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia (Australia). Rural Ethiopian women have little access to emergency obstetric care and can suffer days of excruciating labour. They often lose their baby and suffer horrific internal damage – sometimes the bladder is completely destroyed, sometimes the rectum is also damaged. They leak constantly and are pushed to the edge of their society, too filthy to be part of village life and considered a curse. An amazing Australian couple, the Hamlins, dedicated their lives to treating these women and training local midwives. - See more at: http://hamlin.org.au/#sthash.v4qi6XNQ.dpuf

  • +2
    Suggested Royal Childrens Hospital Foundation

    I nominate the Royal Childrens Hospital Foundation

    :)

    "oh won't somebody please think of the children"

    • I agree 100%.

  • Suggested Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders

    As has been said above, they do fantastic work, and I like that I'm going to be contributing $10 to a charity.

  • Suggested Refugee Rights Action Network

    Hard working group of people just looking to improve the lot for refugees and children stuck in detention.

  • -1

    The last charity on that list that needs money is the Cancer Council. They have plenty. They're a big business now.

  • +1

    Repost to add poll option.

  • Just a reminder. If you are suggesting something

    • Make sure "Suggestion" field is filled, so your suggestion would be added to the poll. It would be in the approval queue and I'll approve them when I get a chance.

    • In your comments please also link to the website. Under Poll Options you can click on the time to go to linked comment where the suggestion was made in the first place. It would be useful for others to see what the charity is about and able to go to the website to check it out.

    Also

    • There is no point of voting at the moment. The votes will be cleared periodically until this Saturday.

    Thanks!

    • There is no point of voting at the moment. The votes will be cleared periodically until this Saturday.

      Might be worth mentioning this at the top. I suspect a few voters have come here and won't come back.

  • +2
    Suggested Memory of Jarred Clayton (Young Widowed Mother and Her Unborn Child)

    I would like to nominate a fund set up for a friend called Leigh who lost her husband Jarred Clayton in October and is due to have their baby in late January.

    It was the second loss for the Jarred’s family, who 18 months ago lost their youngest son Brock. Jarred was a young man with a big heart. He was moving up in his career in the concrete business, he had travelled the world, he played AFL on the Gold Coast in three premiership-winning teams, bought his first home at 22 and was so excited about the birth of his first child with his wife Leigh.

    Below are a few of the articles in relation to the passing of my friend Jarred.

    http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/just-18-months-afte...

    http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/jarred-claytons-dea...

    The My Cause page was created to welcome any donations large or small in the support of his devoted and incredibly strong wife Leigh and their unborn baby due at the end of January 2015. We hope that Leigh will be able to spend the first few months alongside their baby, not having to work. Being a new mum is tough under any circumstances, this tragic turn of fate is unimaginable to most and any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

    Below is the link for the mycause page:
    https://www.mycause.com.au/page/84508/inlovingmemoryofjarred...

  • +1
    Suggested Edgar's Mission Farm Sanctuary

    A great one for rescued farm animals, some which arrive in a terrible state: Edgar’s Mission is a not for profit Farm Sanctuary that seeks to create a humane and just world for humans and non-humans. The farm sanctuary currently provides life-long love and care to over 300 rescued animals.

    http://www.edgarsmission.org.au

  • +2
    Suggested The Salvation Army

    I'd like to nominate The Salvation Army Christmas Appeal. Here is the website: http://salvos.org.au/Christmas. They do excellent work over the Christmas period. Here is a bit of a blurb from the website:

    "The Salvation Army will help over 300,000 Australians in need this Christmas. Figures from a recent Salvation Army survey show 55% of disadvantaged people are not able to give gifts to family and friends at least once a year.

    Major Bruce Harmer is encouraging Australians to help give hope where it’s needed most by donating to this year’s Salvation Army Christmas Appeal.

    Major Harmer said "The Salvation Army will serve around 10,000 meals in the lead up to Christmas and on the day itself. It is estimated over half a million toys and gifts will be distributed to people in need - through the generosity of the Kmart Wishing Tree Appeal. At least 100,000 food vouchers and hampers will be given to people in need."

    • +6

      Please do not donate to the Salvation Army, as they actively lobby against marriage equality, and have threatened to close soup kitchens in areas with anti discrimination laws.
      Several chapters of the Salvationist Handbook of Doctrine refer to the sin of homosexuality, including a section that cites Romans 1:18-32, which includes a admonition that homosexuals “deserved to die”.
      http://salvationist.ca/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/sastory.pd...
      http://www.slapupsidethehead.com/2012/12/skip-out-on-the-ant...
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/26/andrew-craibe-salva...

      I am aware of all the good that this organisation has done in the past, but when so many other great charities exist that aren't anti gay, I cannot see a good reason to give a cent of support to a group with such abhorrent beliefs.

      • +3

        I am not going to tell people not to donate to the Salvation Army - they do a lot of good - but I will point out that the Salvation Army are not just a charitable organisation. They are a religion and everything that goes with that. Even more, they are a fairly conservative Christian religion. Like I said, they do a lot of good but, like many other charities (World Vision springs immediately to mind), they are not just a charity but a church whose ministry includes impressive charitable work.
        Now make your own decisions.

      • As pointed out by blaircam it is a religious group, you can't expect them to go against their religious beliefs…

  • +2

    Autism Spectrum Australia!

  • This is really awesome - I have voted for MSF.

  • Many great suggestions there! I personally prefer RSPCA and MSF. Not sure where to cast my vote later!

  • Cheers for the effort.

  • +$10

  • thank you for the effort

  • +1

    All good - hard to pick - I am going to go with autism I think
    Thank you Scotty & OzB
    This is a great initiative

  • Suggested Engineers without Boarders

    www.ewb.org.au

    Great cause. Great help.

  • +6
    Suggested Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia

    Prostate cancer is the silent killer of otherwise healthy men and the most common cancer diagnosed in Australia. Without doubt, it will affect/affects someone you know. Awareness and early diagnosis will save lifes, and the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia is a fantastic champion of this cause.

    • +1

      +1 for Prostate Cancer Foundation

      Men, don't be embarrassed to go for a check up if you have history or over 40. It's as simple as a blood test these days.

  • +1
    Suggested Bear Cottage

    Am going to suggest my favourite children's charity, Bear Cottage. A wonderful hospice in Manly for terminally ill children and their families so that the child doesn't have to live their final days in a scary hospital but in a beautiful, peaceful environment overlooking the water with doctors, nurses and medical equipment on standby.

  • World Vision Australia

    for $15 per child per month you can sponsor a child or rescue a child.

    more than 70% of donations actually go to the child.

    • +3

      See my comment above re: Salvation Army.
      World Vision are a great organisation who do a lot of good work (and I sponsor a child myself) but you also have to understand that they are a Christian organisation and charitable work is part of their Christian ministry.
      See http://www.worldvision.com.au/AboutUs/More-about-our-Christi...
      Just so you know.

  • +1

    I agree with Austism charities. They have been very helpful for us with our son!

    • whoops, autism I meant!

  • <3

  • +1 for World Vision Australia.

  • +2
    Suggested Compassion

    https://www.compassion.com.au/

    80% go towards the children.

  • Just commenting so extra money is donated.
    As long as it goes to a good charity and does some good then I'll be happy

  • Suggested Mission Australia

    Mission Australia

    Christmas is about getting together with family and friends, harder to do when you're homeless.

    Thanks Scotty and OzB!

  • :D

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