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Australia Charities set up cabinet to survive virus

03:42  27 march  2020
03:42  27 march  2020 Source:   msn.com

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World Vision Australia Chief Advocate Tim Costello at a press conference at Parliament House in Canberra, Tuesday, December 3, 2019. © AAP Image/Mick Tsikas World Vision Australia Chief Advocate Tim Costello at a press conference at Parliament House in Canberra, Tuesday, December 3, 2019. A crisis cabinet will guide the work of Australian charities through the coronavirus pandemic.

While membership of the cabinet is still being finalised, it will be co-chaired by former World Vision head Tim Costello and former charities commissioner Susan Pascoe.

The cabinet will hold its first meeting on Tuesday and will provide advice to government, business, philanthropists and the community.

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Reverend Costello says many charities are struggling as fundraising dwindles, volunteers become less available and charity workers lose their jobs.

"Opportunity shops, churches, group training, fundraising events and socially based community activities are all shut down," he said.

"These are tough times but if we want Australia to have a vibrant future we need as many charities as possible to survive."

Ms Pascoe says the group hopes to hear from charities to assess what will help keep them open.

Community Council for Australia has written to the government asking for all existing funding to be locked in until next year, allowing charities to access the same subsidies as small business and increasing tax offsets for donations for six months.

The new cabinet includes leaders from the Smith Family, OzHarvest, World Wildlife Fund, Save the Children and Philanthropy Australia.

Food shortages a 'real problem' for charities like Foodbank .
Foodbank NSW and ACT CEO John Robertson says while demand for food relief has increased across Australia, donations and volunteers have dropped dramatically.  Foodbank is Australia’s largest food relief charity which provides over 70 percent of the food used in organisations providing aid across the nation.Mr Robertson said “demand had increased massively by almost 50 percent” and yet “25 percent of the food coming into our warehouses had dropped because demand is so great in the supermarkets”.

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