‘Results are good’
22 June 2017
Major Mark Soeters took the opportunity earlier this month to thank all collectors, donors, media supporters and other stakeholders who had helped with the annual national Red Shield appeal doorknock.
‘Interim results are good and we’ve hit our territorial target,’ Mark said, ‘due to the generosity of donors and the hard work of volunteers and the members and employees of The Salvation Army.
‘The economy is certainly influencing people’s capacity to contribute,’ Mark added, ‘and our ageing membership is another aspect that impacts on the doorknock component of the Red Shield Appeal, as is the growth of gated communities, and the weather. There is also the increased cost of living and other issues, such as the wage freeze and smaller levels of disposable income, from which charitable donations tend to come. But we are receiving a similar level of income to previous years.
‘The issue we face down the track is the fact that the doorknock donation level has plateaued; while we are wanting to assist more people, the funds we receive to do so are not increasing, but the costs to do are increasing.’
Mark also pointed out that The Salvation Army was seeing ‘significant increases in people’s support through their leaving money to us in their wills and bequests, through which their funds can be directed towards specific kinds of work’.
Doorknock innovations this year included the 350 ‘tap and go’ tap terminals at 300 static points nationally, which resulted in approximately $50,000 of donations, and the Red Shield ‘sock exchange’, which helped to generate significant media interest and support.
All up, some 35,000 people supported the Red Shield appeal as volunteers in the Australia Southern Territory*. Red Shield funds are used to support people in need of help because of challenges such as poverty, hunger, addictions, homelessness, and Family and Domestic Violence (FDV). The money is used to provided service such as accommodation, food vouchers and material aid, financial counselling, and many other services.
In 2017, the Army reported an interim Red Shield Appeal doorknock total of $4.7 million, towards the goal of $8 million. In 2012, the Army reported an interim Red Shield Appeal doorknock total of $6.6 million, towards a goal of $10 million.
* The Australia Southern Territory (Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory) is merging with the Australia Eastern Territory (New South Wales, Queensland and the Australia Capital Territory), with the process due to be completed in January 2019.