Each year, Perpetual gives not-for-profit (NFP) organisations the chance to apply for funding through our IMPACT Philanthropy Application Program (IPAP). In the 2021 financial year, the generosity of our clients saw $22.6 million distributed through this process.
This year’s IPAP round received over 1500 applications from around 1000 organisations. More than 140 charitable foundations and endowments committed their funds to the process. As a result, the IPAP process is a rich source of data about the trends that are influencing both NFPS and philanthropists.
The report covers a wide cross-section of issues – everything from funding and revenue raising, future risks and alignment with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Here are some highlights.
Short-term crises, long-term thinking
In 2021, COVID-19 dominated the thinking both of NFP leaders and of philanthropists. We saw a real commitment to adapting to the needs of our communities in a time of crisis. But COVID-19 won’t be the last urgent test the sector faces.
“For all of us in the sector, the lesson from COVID-19 is that we need long-run funding and long-run thinking,” says Jane Magor, Perpetual Private’s National Manager of Philanthropy. “To invest in programs that focus on underlying issues and prevention. And to create a more resilient community sector.”
Where’s the money coming from?Due to the impact of the 2020/21 pandemic – and associated lockdowns - the trends in NFP revenue have shifted sharply. Some of the key points are as follows.
- Government funding is at its lowest level in four years.
- Corporate sponsorship has dropped over the past two years.
- Enforced dividend cuts and a low-interest rate environment reduced the investment contribution to NFP coffers.
- Some of this fall has been offset by inflow from philanthropic trusts and direct donations.
With event income down and likely to stay down due to the lingering fears and unpredictability caused by COVID-19 and lockdowns, digital fundraising will become increasingly important. Digital skills will be at a premium – but organisations will also need to manage some of the risks and challenges associated with digital fundraising.
Where the money went in 2021
Through the IPAP process, we ask NFPs to identify some of the risks and challenges their organisations are focused on.
“NFPs have been dealing with immediate COVID-19 effects for nearly two years,” says Caitriona Fay, Managing Partner, Community and Social Investment at Perpetual Private.
“From 2022, they’ll be managing longer running issues such as youth mental health, the educational disadvantages caused by school closures and the hollowing out of small business in regions hard-hit by COVID-19, lockdowns and closed borders. Where possible, government, corporate sponsors and philanthropists may need to switch their focus, funding and support towards these issues.”
2021 Australian Philanthropy Snapshot
If you'd like to see more of our 2021 Australian philanthropy snapshot - more on the funding trends, NFPs employing a gender lens, or focusing on indigenous-led organisations - why not download the report? And get in touch with Perpetual if you have any questions.;
More information on IPAP
You can find more about applying for funding through Perpetual’s IMPACT Philanthropy Application Program in this article. It features resources designed to help organisations apply more successfully.