More than half of Fraser Coast charity money pays employees
FIGURES have revealed Fraser Coast charities and not-for-profits made almost $80 million in a year, and more than half of this was spent on employee expenses.
Data from the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) has shown people dig deep for the region's 109 registered not-for-profits, which recorded a total $1.6 million in donations and bequests in one year.
The data came from the 2014 annual information statements registered charities submitted to the ACNC.
The figures showed Hervey Bay and Maryborough's charities and not-for-profits had a combined gross income of $79.4 million.
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More than half of this - or $44.5 million - went towards employee expenses, including wages for about 1200 staff.
Government grants made up about 34% ($27.1 million) of the total income from Fraser Coast charities and not-for-profits, and 2% ($1.6 million) came from donations and bequests.
The remainder came from other sources.
Data from the ACNC also showed which charities and not-for-profits recorded the highest donation amounts, and who were the biggest beneficiaries of government money.
The Trustee for Wide Bay Education Trust recorded the highest level of donations and bequests in the Fraser Coast region, having about 31% of the region's total donations pool, with about $508,000.
Tinana Christian Fellowship Inc recorded the second-highest donation amount that year, with about $197,000.
Third highest was Torbay Retirement Villages Ltd with $158,000.
Meals on Wheels - Fraser Community Inc president Ray Fleming said charities were vital because it would be impossible for the government to fund all the work not-for-profits did.
Without charities, Mr Fleming said, the community would be a chaotic place.
Meals on Wheels raised about $17,000 in donations and bequests.
Mr Fleming said the organisation's main aim was to keep people in their homes for as long as possible.
The Hervey Bay-based operation caters for about 300 people, and Maryborough Meals on Wheels caters for about 200.
It would not be possible without the help of 120 volunteers at the Hervey Bay operation and 100 volunteers at Maryborough.
Bayside Transformations Ltd raised the eighth-highest donation amount in the Fraser Coast region, with about $63,000.
It also recorded zero government funding.
Bayside is a residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre, and its director, Tina Embrey, said the basis of most charities was compassion and a 'from-the-heart' attitude.
When first setting up Bayside, Ms Embrey said she was not paid a cent.
"A lot of charities do that because they care about the community," she said. "It's done out of care factor."
When it came to government grants, Maryborough Christian Education Foundation was the biggest beneficiary in the Fraser Coast region, receiving about $8.6 million.
This was followed by Lutheran Church of Australia Queensland District, which is based at Urraween, with $5.6 million, and Fraser Coast Family Networks with about $3 million.
- ARM NEWSDESK
Fraser Coast region charities and not-for-profits with the most gross income:
Torbay Retirement Villages Ltd: $19.9 million
Maryborough Christian Education Foundation: $11.4 million
Lutheran Church of Australia Queensland District: $7.6 million
RSL Maryborough Sub-Branch: $5.3 million
Home Maintenance and Security Service Association: $3.5 million
Source: 2014 annual information statements registered charities submitted to the ACNC
Organisations receiving the highest amounts in donations and bequests:
World Vision Australia: $309.9 million
Australian Red Cross Society: $97.6 million
The Movember Group: $94.6 million
Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) Australia: $72.3 million
Compassion Australia: $71.4 million
Organisations receiving the most government funding:
Monash University: $1 billion
The University of Queensland: $986.5 million
Australian Red Cross Society: $936.9 million
Deakin University: $578.1 million
University of Western Australia: $575.4 million