Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Report shows not-for-profits are struggling to keep up with increased demand from Australian families

Demand for emergency relief and financial assistance has risen sharply in the last 12 months as more Australian families face increased financial pressure.

A report released today on the impact of the global economic recession on not-for-profit organisations has revealed more Australians are turning to community organisations for help.

The Impact of the economic downturn on not-for-profit organisation management report by the Centre for Corporate Public Affairs found that these organisations are experiencing a reduction in investment income, corporate funding and funding from philanthropic trusts and foundations, impacting on their ability to provide services to their increasing client base.

The report found 65 per cent of not-for-profit organisations reported an increase in demand for services as a result of the economic downturn, with 83 per cent expecting demand to increase further in the coming year.

We know that many people are under pressure trying to cope with the impact of the global financial crisis.

To support Australians doing it tough, the Australian Government has doubled emergency relief funding and placed more financial counsellors on the ground to help struggling families.

Over the next two years an extra $80.4 million in emergency relief and financial counselling will help families and individuals at risk of falling through the cracks.

Emergency relief funding will flow to 689 organisations working in 1299 locations across Australia.

This will help vulnerable Australians in 297 locations across New South Wales, 257 in Victoria, 254 in Queensland, 184 in Western Australia, 177 in South Australia, 38 in Tasmania, 18 in the ACT and 76 in the Northern Territory.

To get people back on their feet for the long-term we need to do more than fix their immediate problems. We want to equip them to take action early when faced with personal financial difficulties to reduce the likelihood of problems escalating.

Fifty new financial counsellors will be available to help families manage their finances, bringing the total number of financial counsellors to 121 across Australia.

For more information on the report visit the Centre for Corporate Publica Affairs website (