Thank you to everyone who joined us in Brisbane for the 43rd FIA Conference!


We hope that you enjoyed your time at conference and found the sessions, exhibition and networking opportunities to be a valuable experience. We hope you can return to your organisation inspired and ready to implement new fundraising strategies and ideas.


Looking forward to see you all at the FIA Conference 2021 in Melbourne, 24 – 26 February!



FIA Conference 2021 planning is underway! Stay tuned for further details.

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2020 Program

FIA Conference 2020 is held over three days. Wednesday holds eight Masterclasses, and Thursday - Friday the two day conference program. The 2020 program will include seven tracks: Personal Effectiveness; Creativity & Innovation; Individual Giving; Middle & Major Donors; Community, Events & Corporates; Building Trust & Accountability; and Fundraising How To...


Masterclass Registrations Open


The use and misuse of emotion
Ken Burnett


Gifts in Wills
Roewen Wishart FFIA CFRE, Xponential; Ross Anderson MFIA, Alfred Health Foundation ; Ligia Pena CFRE, Greenpeace International


Regular Giving Reality Check
Scott Nicholson MFIA, Make-A-Wish Australia & Rachael Lance, Leukaemia Foundation


Unlock your nerve: How to find the power and magic in your storytelling
Esther Kwaku, The Nerve Network


Transformational Event & Community Fundraising
Claire Hughes MFIA, MS Queensland & Meredith Dwyer FFIA CFRE, HomeMade Digital Australia


Data for Fundraising
Kristi Mansfield, Seer Data & Wayne Sampson, Vision Australia – VIC


Amplifying your Major Giving Program
Allison Howell Quinton CFRE, University of Melbourne & Mide Akerewusi, AgentsC inc.



Conference Registration & Exhibition Hall Opens


Afternoon Tea in Expo


To include:

  • Official Welcome: Katherine Raskob, Fundraising Institute Australia


Annabelle shares insights into how to build a team from nothing from her own experience of doing it across 2 nations. This presentation covers ensuring the team is aligned around strategy, purpose and values, developing self belief, getting mentors, lifelong learning, pivoting faster and loving it all – the highs, lows and everything in between. Annabelle has raised tens of millions of dollars over the past 5 years, through a range of partnerships, leveraging high net worth individuals to give multi-year commitments, appeals and campaigns. She will share some of her insights into how to create a strong call to action and leverage story telling and passion to get people to join your organisation’s quest.


“I relished being a fundraiser for many years, or at least until after one of my field visits to a developing country when I came back with a feeling that something didn’t feel right. It had been there for some time – a disconnect in the way I was telling stories of amazing communities I had met. I knew then I had to do something about it: I quit the charity sector entirely, packed up, and set out on a mission to find others who were making powerful change happening in the world.”


Want to hear about an incredible journey of connecting with your mission as a change-maker? Well, this is set to be a powerful one. Esther’s keynote will energise you through sizzling stories, fearless introspection and daring questions. Will you be the thinking the same thing about your purpose as when you walked through the door? We hope not.


If anything, we hope that it will get you thinking about the lost art of serendipity, how to inject entrepreneurial va-va-voom into your work, making brave mistakes and how to take badass steps forward for the things you care about.



Join us for the official welcome reception of FIA Conference 2020! Network with friends and colleagues over a drink and some canapes in the exhibition hall.

Date: Wednesday 26 February

Time: 5.15pm – 7.15pm

Venue: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre

Ticket included in full conference registration. Additional tickets at $75 each.

Sponsored by 

Speed Networking

If this is your first time at the conference, come along to meet and network with other conference delegates.

Date: Wednesday 26 February

Time: 5.15pm – 6.00pm

Venue: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre

Ticket included in conference registration.


Social Event

If you are a Fellow or CFRE, you are invited to this special function to network with fundraising colleagues over a drink or two.


Date: Wednesday 26 February

Time: 6.45 – 7.45pm

Location: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre

Ticket included in conference registration.

Social Event

Under 35 and keen to meet other like-minded young professionals in the fundraising sector? This is the conference event for you! This casual networking event, specifically for young fundraisers, offers you a unique opportunity to deepen your relationships with fellow emerging leaders from across the country.


Date: Wednesday 26 February

Time: 6.45 – 7.45pm

Location: Resource Cafe in Exhibition Hall

Ticket included in conference registration.


Creativity & Innovation

Society is changing. Fast. The fundraising propositions that worked yesterday, will not work tomorrow. And the organisations that are able to anticipate and meet these new donor needs will succeed. The rest will die.

Come to this session to find out why fundraising business as usual has to change. Featuring sector trends, research, benchmarks and insights from the innovation index; take away ready-made slides you can use to convince senior leadership to invest in innovation.

Learn in what ways you and your organisation could innovate to be more relevant; from embracing new ways of working and developing new products, to changing departmental structures and even pivoting your charity’s purpose.

And leave with a box full of tools for how to get there; from identifying the right insights using root cause analysis, solving problems using ideation techniques and human centred design principles, through to setting up innovation pipelines and creating a culture of innovation within your workplace.

This session will outline the key principles of innovation that will form the foundation for the rest of the track.  Packed with examples from the charity sector and business world, it will also include links to books, podcasts, and free online courses where you can learn more.


Ben Littlejohn MFIA, Act for Peace
Ruth Wicks MFIA, More Strategic


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Individual Giving

Find out how a local Brisbane charity went from good to great by knowing where to focus its effort for the best return, how to get board involvement and investment, attracting the right people to join the team and navigating through the hurdles.

This is a session for anyone in a small to medium size organisation who has ambitious plans for growth and wants to hear from an experienced and candid fundraising professional who has taken his organisation from good to great.

This session is about how to get the organisation from staff to volunteers to board focussed on individual giving for sustainability.


Damian Topp EMFIA, PA Research Foundation


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers) / Intermediate

Middle & Major Donors

Explore the power of creating an internal philanthropic culture and provide indicators of success with Dr Ruth Knight from the Australian Centre of Nonprofit and Philanthropy studies.  Discover how you can use this culture to enhance your fundraising results as well as improve your organisation’s sustainability.

As a non-profit culture expert, Ruth will pin point how you can gain insights about nurturing an organisation-wide philanthropic culture that improves employee engagement and helps influence the way that people throughout your organisation think and speak about philanthropy.


Dr Ruth Knight, QUT ACPNS Alumni Chapter


Session Grading: Intermediate (2-7 years experience)


Community, Events & Corporates

Corporates move fast and they expect you to keep up.  But what if you’re not ready?


Do you have a corporate partnerships strategy?

Are your internal stakeholders on board?

Have you assessed the risk?

How do you calculate the ROI?

How will you service the partnership?

Have you protected your brand?

Who gives the final approval?


We can all be dazzled by the bright lights and big money of corporate partnerships but if your processes aren’t in place, you run the risk of devaluing the opportunity and losing the partner.

In this practical, hands on session, Tasman will map your internal processes from the board to contract and take you through some real life experiences including where he got this totally wrong!

He’ll provide you with a step by step guide on getting you “Corporate Ready”, ready for scale.


Tasman Cassim, Black Dog Institute


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)


Building Trust & Accountability

While the Australian Institute of Family Studies expresses concern about rising rates of abuse of older Australians, charities are dedicating more and more resources to convincing the elderly to make charitable bequests. It is critical that we get the balance right.


“We have had twenty charities contact us and ask for our bequest. It is overwhelming,” reported one elderly donor.


This presentation looks at current bequest practices and the protections needed for older people. It makes recommendations for positive and effective bequest promotion that gets results for charities while also protecting the elderly.


Dr Daniel McDiarmid, AskRIGHT


Session Grading: General

Fundraising How To...

Lizzie Borwick MFIA, Amnesty

Dan Geaves, Marlin Communications

Personal Effectiveness

Have your fundraising approach refreshed and transformed in an hour with Esther Kwaku where she unravels the essential thinking behind fundraising self-leadership;

  • Why you even are here? What is your purpose, goals and mission?
  • How do you bring your best self? What you bring to the table?
  • How to keep your motivation going, especially when things get challenging?  How do you sizzle and stay alive?

Esther’s experiences and lessons learn


Esther Kwaku, The Nerve Network


Creativity & Innovation

In this presentation, Olivia will talk about her experience as chair of the Innovation Group and as Fundraising Innovation Lead at one of the UK’s oldest and most respected NFPs: Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity.  Olivia will explain her approach to ensuring the key pillars of innovation were in place and will touch on aspects such as:

– Building capability and capacity

– Recruiting and using internal ambassadors

– Cross organisational collaboration

– Innovation process

– Innovation think tanks

– Getting buy-in from your board and advisory group.


Olivia will talk though a successful new project that was developed using her innovation process framework.


Olivia Jary, Sydney Children’s Hospitals Foundation


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Individual Giving

What a complex, fascinating, inspiring, confusing, emotional, unpredictable world of fundraising we live in!  If only we could understand it better and use that knowledge to further our quests to save the world…

This session approaches ‘fundraising’ as a trichotomous environment of donors, fundraisers and organisations, whose combined efforts and interactions produce the end result. In a sector full of passionate, resourceful, energetic and dedicated people, and often emotionally charged environments, fundraising can at times feel like you’re battling a three-headed monster…albeit, it’s a monster that wants to save the world.

We will look at the psychology of those three different, but equally important components – their motivations, values, beliefs, relationships, emotions and behaviours – to understand this complex environment we operate in and enable us to better connect with our fundraising world.

Why do donors give? Are some people innately more likely to become donors? What drives someone to become a fundraiser? How can I motivate my team?

Is culture really impacting my fundraising results? Why doesn’t my leadership team support our fundraising? Most importantly, how can we utilise this knowledge to become more efficient and effective in our work?


Chantel Plum MFIA


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers) / Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Middle & Major Donors

Struggling to develop collaborative working relationships between the people or teams who manage your current donors? In this session you will hear how RFDS QLD is building a pipeline of major donors through its DM portfolio, using Direct Marketing as a resource and a value-add, and all are working together with Gifts in Wills for the best donor outcome.


Bill Maddock, Royal Flying Doctor Service – QLD
Erin Kiely, Royal Flying Doctor Service – QLD


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers) / Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Community, Events & Corporates

With loads of practical tips for fundraisers, this presentation will outline how The Bloody Long Walk has become such a success and how it’s grown over the past five years. The presentation will be especially valuable for people in small organisations with limited awareness (Mito being a perfect example of a Foundation with limited awareness). With fundraising from The Bloody Long Walk growing by 50% last year, Luke and Sean will share strategies and techniques they have applied to connect participants to the cause and to the Mito Foundation and encourage them to raise funds.


Luke Edwards MFIA, Elevate Fundraising
Sean Murray, Mito Foundation

Building Trust & Accountability

In late 2018, Cancer Council Victoria began the process of pivoting the Fundraising and Communications Department to truly put the supporters experience at the centre of all decision making. With the findings from the Commission on the Donor Experience as a guidebook and with Giles Pegram CBE as mentor, we are transforming the way decisions are made and how success is defined and measured. The program, titled “Supporter First”, requires fundraisers at all levels to ask themselves, “if I do this, what experience will I be giving my supporters? What experience do I want them to have?” This type of questioning runs deeper than simply being donor centred – it’s a challenge to authentically develop strategies and an approach to day-to-day decisions with the supporter experience as the primary consideration. In this presentation Lisa will share the five key principles used in decision making and daily interactions; the internal cultural change embarked upon and the new measures of success that look beyond short-term financial gain.


Lisa Kastaniotis CFRE, Cancer Council VIC


Session Grading: Intermediate (2-7 years experience) / Advanced (more than 7 years experience)

Fundraising How To...

In this session Jonathan and Tom will take you back to basics of how to choose and manage a face to face or telemarketing supplier. Know what to look for, know what to look out for – you’ll come away with numerous tips and ideas and be better placed to make sure your regular giving program starts well and keeps on giving.


Jonathan Storey, Environment Victoria
Tom Duggan CFRE, Plan International Australia


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers) / Beginner Fundraisers (less than 2 years experience) / Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Personal Effectiveness

This panel discussion will explore four different approaches to building a career in fundraising. The current state of play in Australia is that no fundraising qualification is accredited, meaning that no Registered Training Organisation (RTO) can issue a nationally recognised qualification following completion.  

So how do we build a career in a sector that raises a collective $143 billion each year and allows 55,000 NFPs to continue their work each year? Each panelist represents a unique point of view and story on how they have progressed their career based on the training, work experience and / or qualification undertaken.


Nigel Harris FFIA CFRE, Mater Foundation
Cara Morrison MFIA CFRE, Cancer Council NSW
Bec Stott EMFIA, Anglicare WA
Wendy Farrow MFIA, Prince of Wales Hospital Foundation
Craige Gravestein FFIA CFRE, Xponential Philanthropy


Morning Tea in the Expo


Creativity & Innovation

Belinda will take us through the journey of transformation that Red Cross has been on over the past two and a half years – to transform the approach to put the donor genuinely at the centre of everything.  Content will include; 

1) Red Cross 2017 – the reality.  

2) Change of direction to put customer at the centre. 

3) How they did it.

4) Impact, results and what’s next?


Belinda Dimovski, Australian Red Cross


Session Grading: Intermediate

Individual Giving

This session is all about finding the best possible way of using phones as an effective tool to support the length and breadth of individual giving programs.

Nicola and Beth will illustrate how you can use your phone calls to engage with supporters, save your at-risk donors, provide complete donor care, deliver excellent retention and call quality results.


Nicola Kaufman, Plan International Australia
Beth Cross, Plan International Australia


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers) / Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Middle & Major Donors

Join Rose from Baptist World Aid, Ruthann from Act for Peace and Dan from Marlin Communications as they share how they are each successfully tackling the opportunity of Middle Donors. Come hear the secrets (and challenges) of these three awesome fundraisers success in the Middle Donor space. Part case study show case and part Q&A you will have the opportunity to ask questions and join the conversation.


Dan Geaves, Marlin Communications
Rose Young, Baptist World Aid Australia
Ruthann Richardson MFIA, Act for Peace


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers) /  Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Community, Events & Corporates

Hair with Heart is the national fundraising and hair donation program run by Variety – the Children’s Charity.

The origins of Hair with Heart go back to 2007, when former rugby league player, Matthew Adamson’s daughter Charlotte was diagnosed with alopecia – an auto-immune condition that causes hair loss.  The family decided to collect hair donations to supply to wig makers so that children like Charlotte could have hair just like other kids. By 2013 running the program became too much for the family to manage, and so it moved to Variety NSW and became known as Variety Hair with Heart.

The rapid expansion of the program through online fundraising has been extraordinary.

In 2018 Variety received over 6,000 ponytail donations and raised more than $1.4m through Hair with Heart.

In this session, the team at Variety will tell you how their organisation has delivered a best practice donor journey to ensure that the yearlong fundraising program continues to go from strength to strength.


Penelope Sinton MFIA, Variety – the Children’s Charity of NSW


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Building Trust & Accountability

In response to the vilification of fundraising in the U.K. that began in 2015 with the suicide death of Olive Cooke, the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) in Canada began a process of building a new narrative for fundraisers. There is a myriad of familiar misconceptions about professional fundraisers. These false narratives have eroded the public’s trust in what we do and why. At worst, they could lead to full-on crisis in our profession. It’s time to set the record straight. But how? Based on research and new ideas by Rogare – The Fundraising Think Tank and a group of AFP Canadian volunteers, AFP Canada has created a brand new fundraising narrative. While this is a made in Canada project, many of the learnings can be applied to fundraising in Australia. This session will arm you with the tools and information you need to help you better articulate the importance of your work to the public, the media, your boss, your board, and perhaps most importantly, your donors. Learning Outcomes: – stop apologising for your work and feeling defensive about the need to ask for money – Learn a new and more positive narrative about fundraisers – Explain to your stakeholders about the work you do and why it’s so important.


Ian MacQuillin, Rogare – The Fundraising Think Tank


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Fundraising How To...

The key to any campaign’s success starts with your data! In this data-driven session, Andy Tidy will reveal the answers to some crucial questions – who should you be targeting? How can you better predict response across different asks? And what are the most important measures of both short and long-term success?


Andy Tidy, Slingshot Data

Personal Effectiveness

When emotion is high, tempers can boil over, making it challenging to handle stressed colleagues and staff.

The lead up to fundraising events can trigger emotional waves of both excitement and stress. Such extremes make it critical to recognise and communicate effectively with the different personalities working in your fundraising team.

Authentic conversations are direct and are driven by an intention to be open and positive. They start with that positive intent, irrespective of the context or issue.

In this interactive session you will learn how to hold the space for others, as well as actively initiate, engage in, and invite others to participate in authentic conversations. as the session will boost your confidence and you’ll learn tips and strategies to ensure complicated views and ideas are expressed clearly. You’ll be able to ensure challenging situations are handled openly with a results- oriented focus; and you’ll lead the way in avoiding inappropriate channels of communication. The end result will be that you’ll be more willing and better equipped to have the essential authentic conversations that are needed.


Sally Foley-Lewis, Sally Foley-Lewis | People & Productivity


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)


Creativity & Innovation

How do you harness the capability, ideas and information within your organisation to drive better business decisions by giving your staff, stakeholders and supporters a voice?

This is a story of the Queensland Police Service’s Innovation Unit which commenced in 2016.

d Kelly will highlight two case studies that explore how the unit successfully used the energy of people and stakeholders within their organisation alongside a platform designed to democratise the process of innovation to generate ideas, support positive engagement and deliver innovative outcomes.


Kelly McAuliffe, Queensland Police Service (QPS)


Session Grading: Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Individual Giving

Customer Experience in Fundraising
How we used Customer Experience to better understand our supporters and design with them in mind, with a focus on Regular Giving.

Our fundraising team had observed a decline in our Regular Giving program, especially in Face to Face fundraising, increasing cost, higher attrition; as our highest value individual fundraising product this represented a high risk to Red Cross.

The Customer Experience team kicked off a program of work to understand the current state experience of regular giving experience, and identify opportunities for improvement.

Jennifer will talk through the end to end program of work from discovery to implementation, including lessons learnt along the way.
Jennifer will also share some CX tips and tricks on how to get to know your supporters deeply.


Jennifer Shailer, Australian Red Cross

Middle & Major Donors

Join Liz from Australia for UNHCR and Stephanie from Taronga as they share case studies of how they are each successfully tackling the opportunity of Major Donors. From a highly successful DM approach, to resourcing for relationship management come hear the secrets (and challenges) of these three awesome fundraisers success in the Major Donor space. Part case study show case and part Q&A you will have the opportunity to ask questions and join the conversation.


Elizabeth Grady, Australia For UNHCR
Stephanie Hart, Taronga Conservation Society Australia


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)/ Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Community, Events & Corporates

This presentation will cover a large range of effective gamification options for you to consider, including connecting virtual participants to help them feel part of a larger movement. 


Drawing inspiration from video games:  

Customisable avatars were introduced for the MS Readathon where children could personalise their characters as they hit fundraising milestones.   

Badges – they work 

Badges aren’t just for kids … adults want a gold star too!  

Tiers, dashboards and stats: 

Inspiration for dashboard and tier emails comes from those people who are obsessed with their frequent flyer status, which is where the concept started.   

Getting competitive:  

As well as running competitions, there is a wealth of new methods of activating fundraisers. 

Being part of the club:  

Creating high value clubs across a number of campaigns has worked well.   

Around the world? In the session, you will get a sneak-peak at some gamification trends and ideas from the US and UK. 

The power of doing what works: 

The story behind raising $2.1million in a first year campaign.


Marcus Blease FFIA, Donor Republic
Natasha Duncan, Multiple Sclerosis Limited
Paige Gibbs MFIA, Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research

Building Trust & Accountability

Building a culture of Inclusion and Diversity is essential for us all to thrive. This workshop will combine a brief panel discussion exploring how fundraising in Australia stacks up versus other countries and interactive exercises so you can add your voice on what should come next. Our aim is to inform what FIA should be doing to take a proactive approach.

This workshop will offer an opportunity to hear what we know about our present levels of comparative diversity from research; what approaches are being taken internationally in the UK, North America and other markets and what should we be aware of here that makes the Australian context unique? We’ll be joined by a leading inclusion and Diversity to explore big questions with the aim to understand where we are now as a sector, and to invite you to become part of a coalition of collaborators to build what may come next. If you are interested in Inclusion and Diversity, it will be an opportunity to get involved and join others in helping develop plans for the future.


Gavin Coopey FFIAFIA Inclusion and Diversity ‘champion’
Kaz McGrathIndependent Innovation Consultant and Diversity advocate
Mide Akerewusi, AgentsC inc.

Fundraising How To...

When embarking on income growth from individual donors, the key is to always realise the potential of current donors before investing in more donors. This workshop introduces the concept of hyper-personalisation in the context of donor data, how it can enhance and increase revenue, engage donors quickly (major donors) and in the long term (bequests). Using real case studies, the workshop focuses on the four most important types of questions that can be asked, why and how they should be used. Attendees will leave with exactly what they need to send a survey to their donors the next week (assuming they know how to send mail and email to supporters!)


Sean Triner, Moceanic
Christina Hoey CFRE, Save the Children New Zealand

Personal Effectiveness

As the leader of a fundraising team, you want to bring out the best in each individual and create a workplace where people bring their best daily. After all, fundraising is an important function of any charity and your team’s success can be undermined by turnover, disengaged staff, and low morale. When your team is made up of people with an array of personalities, motivators, work experience and education, how do you coach them to be their best? As importantly, how do you, as a manager, create and support a high-performing fundraising team? This session will give you a framework to evaluate your culture’s ability to support team members’ growth, your team members’ individual professional development needs, and tips to coach your fundraising team to excellence.


Heather Hill CNM CFRE,  LAPA Fundraising


Session Grading: Intermediate (2-7 years experience) Advanced (more than 7 years experience)


Lunch in the Expo


Plenary Session

What fundraising has to do if it’s to recover the fractured love and trust of donors.

This session examines what fundraisers in the UK should be doing following several years of sustained attacks and persistent reputation damage in the wake of the Olive Cooke tragedy and the Oxfam safeguarding scandal. For fundraisers outside of the UK the British experience should be a wake-up call. But this isn’t about averting or recovering from near disaster. It’s about the best opportunity that’s ever faced our sector. This will be hard-hitting and challenging, but optimistic. It will get people talking. Fundraising in the UK is experiencing a lull after the most damaging media focus that swept over UK charities from 2015 to 2017 and beyond. The lull will not last. The media, pre Brexit, is merely focused elsewhere. Affection for fundraisers slipped significantly and the effects of this are still being felt. This session is about how we structure the fundraising function in the light of new realities and changing donor expectations.

Ken Burnett


This session will include the Fellows Recognition.


Afternoon Tea in the Expo


Creativity & Innovation

Every for purpose organisation needs an entrepreneur to get it under way, but sustained growth requires new projects that explore new directions. Those projects need to be driven too – by intrapreneurs.  In 2011 Richard Branson suggested that:  “Many millions of people proudly claim the title ‘entrepreneur.’ On the other hand, a title that hasn’t gotten nearly the amount of attention it deserves is entrepreneur’s little brother, “intrapreneur”; an employee who is given freedom and financial support to create new products, services and systems.”

In this session an experienced and innovative fundraiser will share her experiences of securing the support required to be such an “intrapreneur”.  Delegates will learn:  what the characteristics of an intrapreneur are. How to create a team culture in which innovation is seen as something everyone can do. What allies and backers do they need to recruit and how? How should they communicate to create sustained support for their innovation? Pitfalls to avoid and strategies for managing failures. Why becoming an intrapreneur can offer a great gift to a fundraiser: the sense that they belong.


Vanessa Byrne, Australian Red Cross


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Individual Giving

In this session, Julie will be presenting a practical look at developing a foundation to complement your fundraising strategy.  Some areas are often easy to overlook but they are so essential:

  • Why do donors give to your organisation?
  • What are you raising funds for?
  • Proactive versus reactive.
  • Relationship building – a flexible donor-led approach.
  • The importance of diversifying your income streams

Julie will also look at what is often not taken into consideration, areas such as income and data management, tactics, staff engagement and knowledge, stewardship, change, systems and processes.

This session will be especially helpful for anyone working in a small to medium fundraising team.


Julie Mullen MFIA CFRE, Queensland Symphony Orchestra


Session Grading: General Fundraisers/ Intermediate

Middle & Major Donors

Mark and Penny will guide you through the “ins and outs” of some of the most challenging conversations you could ever have with major donors. Focused on the critical conversations that precede ‘the ask’ Mark and Penny will prepare you for greater success, by taking you through some of the toughest conversational situations you’ll ever face. Walk away better able to solve conversation dilemmas in a manner that achieves major gift success.


Mark Quigley FFIA,  Social Venture Consultants
Penny Tribe, Western Sydney University


Session Grading: Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Community, Events & Corporates

Susan Williams of MS Research Australia and Luke Edwards of Elevate Fundraising will share the essential ingredients that were blended together to produce the stellar success of the peer to peer, virtual event The May 50K.

MS Research Australia is a small charitable organisation with a strong focus on impact.  It exists to fund life changing research into multiple sclerosis.  In this session you will find out how this group leveraged the existing community fundraising platform and audience through a low cost, scalable virtual event.  You will walk away with insights on making the case for appropriate levels of investment into community fundraising, why taking a whole of organisation approach matters and how having a medium to long term view on digital, pays off.


Susan Williams MFIA, MS Research Australia
Luke Edwards MFIA, Elevate Fundraising


Session Grading: Intermediate

Building Trust & Accountability

One element of the Code that is fundamental to good fundraising practice is how we treat donors in vulnerable circumstances. For many charities, helping the vulnerable is a core element of their mission. So what happens when we get it wrong and accept a donation over the phone from someone who has told us they are not responsible for managing their own finances due to illness? Hear from our ‘mystery’ speaker how one charity got it wrong and what it did to fix the problem.


Katherine Raskob, FIA CEO and Mystery Speaker

Fundraising How To…

For fundraisers starting their gifts in wills career and NFP’s staring a new GIW program. Drawing on her experience starting gifts in wills programs in both large and small organisations, Jakki will sort the wheat from the chaff about Gifts in Wills fundraising and give you the tools you need to embark upon this fascinating area of fundraising.


You will come away from the session with a clear idea of how to gain investment for your program, how to identify prospects for acquisition/conversion, how to use a variety of channels to make the GIW ask and how to measure your success.


Jakki Travers, The Smith Family

Personal Effectiveness

In this modern, busy world filled with distractions and stresses it is easy to fall into ‘survival’ mode – just getting through the day to day. In order to thrive we need to be able to make conscious and mindful choices about what we focus on and where we put our energy and attention. This presentation helps fundraisers learn how to ‘thrive’ by managing busy minds, recognising mindsets that are unhelpful and making mindful choices.

Themes covered include:
1. Neuroscience of stress, busyness and burnout.
2. Habits of mind that help or hinder thriving ng.
3. Mindfulness tools for managing stress and busyness.


Louise Healy, Mind U Services Pty Ltd


Join us for the Fundraisers’ Gala Awards Dinner! We’ll recognise outstanding fundraising and announce the winners of the FIA Awards for Excellence in Fundraising before we party the night away with live music.


Date: Thursday 27 February

Time: 7.00pm till late

Venue: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre

Tickets: Members $185; Staff of Organisational Members $200; Non-Members $220

Conference and Dinner Packages available. Members save over $75

Principal Award Sponsors:



Registration Opens


Networking & Breakfast in the Expo


Plenary Session

Our speakers for the Myth Smashers are:


Alexandra Growden, Catherine House Adelaide
Ellaine Hislop EMFIA CFRE, Surf Life Saving Western Australia
Lauren McDermott MFIA, Harry Perkins Institute of Medical Research
Greg Potent, Leukaemia Foundation


Creativity & Innovation

Four cutting edge examples of forward thinking charities using tech to innovate and drive fundraising income: 

1) The Salvation Army’s use of wearable tech for the Red Shield Door Knock  

2) How fundraisers  can now use blockchain to engage with different audiences of philanthropists – case study on Wateraid or Unicef 

3) Using artificial intelligence and SMS to enhance peer to peer fundraising in three different markets 

4) How to use the world’s leading Cx platform to engage your supporters in dialogue, to obtain data fast and to use it to drive lifetime value.
5) How to use machine learning to improve fundraising returns.



Duncan Barker MFIA, Near Field Creative
Chris Zhong, Blockchain Philanthropy Foundation
Tim Sadler MFIA, Act for Peace
Tim Paris, Dataro


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Individual Giving

Reporting on Gifts in Wills fundraising can be a controversial topic because it cannot be evaluated in the same way as other fundraising channels. In fact, we do ourselves a disservice by looking only at current revenue. What happens to the efforts made to acquire and convert donors? Do we know what our cost ratios are?

In this session, participants will learn how Greenpeace revamped its KPI definitions and implemented a legacy dashboard to better manage and track the evolution of Gifts in Wills fundraising globally.

The tools presented will be easily adaptable by organisations whatever their size.

Learning outcomes:

1) How to create excitement and buy-in to implement a new reporting tool

2) How to strategically evaluate the legacy program

3) Knowing which are the most important KPIs to measure success with a legacy dashboard.


Ligia Pena CFRE, Greenpeace International


Session Grading: Intermediate/Advanced

Middle & Major Donors

A highly successful fundraiser in the UK and Canada, Mide brings his unique modern major gifts approach to help you pay attention to diversity in philanthropy.  Using research, stories and case studies of successful major gifts secured from people of diverse backgrounds, Mide will explore with you how inclusive philanthropy can lead you to greater fundraising success.


Mide Akerewusi, AgentsC inc.

Community, Events & Corporates

Lead generation can be a costly exercise and gaining quality leads can be a challenge. Childhood Cancer Support is a small organisation doing big things and in 2019 conducted a lead generation campaign to engage people to send a message of support to kids with cancer from regional areas. The digital-lead campaign was integrated with face-to-face activations and events and generated leads for donations, community fundraisers and regular giving as well as showing tangible support to families affected by cancer. 


Bruce Nean, Childhood Cancer Support Inc & Digital for Good


Session Grading: Beginner Fundraisers


Building Trust & Accountability

Received best practice wisdom in fundraising says you should always put the interests of your donor first. But can donorcentrism go too far? Based on new research conducted by Rogare, this session explores potential abuses of the power dynamic in donor-fundraising relationships — ‘donor dominance’– such as mission creep or inappropriate behaviour – and how fundraisers deal with this.

Session attendees will:

1) Understand different types of ‘donor dominance’ and how they impact a charity and its fundraising

2) Apply ethical theories of fundraising to understanding how to resolve dominance issues

3) Discover how other fundraisers have confronted dominance issues and apply this knowledge to understanding similar issues in your context

4) Use your new understanding of donor dominance to build a case to the board and SMT for changing practices at your organisation.


Heather Hill CNM CFRE, LAPA Fundraising


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Fundraising How To…

Providing a brilliant donor experience. This quick-fire session will give delegates real tangible takeaways plus practical ideas that they can implement as soon as they get back to the office.

Ken Burnett



Personal Effectiveness

When presenting – be it to a Board, your leadership team, your CFO, or any of the diverse stakeholders we all work with – there is much we can learn from the approach of the horse whisperer.

By adopting a sympathetic view of the motives, needs, and desires of their “audience”, based on an understanding of equine behaviour, the horse whisperer seeks to build good will, influence and inspire the response or outcome desired.

In this session we will look at the audiences we regularly engage as fundraisers and how you, as a presenter, can seek to understand their needs and attitudes; engage with them in a way that meets them where they are; and, ultimately, build connection and engagement with your fundraising objectives and strategies.

This will be an interactive session, sharing stories and insights from real-world examples and exploring the challenges and opportunities you face in your role.


Andrew Martin, The Fundraising Agency


Session Grading: General Fundraisers


Morning Tea in the Expo


Creativity & Innovation

A new wave of giving

What happens when four very different charities start a conversation about delivering a more innovative, cost-effective approach to fundraising? A ripple creates a wave and the momentum starts a movement. Rippling has broken new ground, establishing a joint fundraising entity without precedent. Hear from Louise Baxter, one of the Founding Directors of Rippling, about how the organisation came to be, the lessons learned and the inspiring vision for the future. This is a story about trust, innovation and collaboration . This is a story about creating a new wave of giving.


Louise Baxter, Starlight Children’s Foundation


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Individual Giving

For the best part of 20 years in Australia, growing regular giving programs has been face to face or bust. Whilst still perched at the top of the tree, sadly F2F isn’t the nirvana of growth it once was.

The sleeping giant isn’t generating leads from online surveys or creating faux pledges to support.

So, what is?

What if you could recruit thousands of monthly supporters, and at the same time offer information to people that could save their life?

Organisations of different shapes and sizes – but all with something of value to offer members of the public, are finding an alternative to what was once the panacea of regular giving.

Find out what sun screen stickers, breast cancer guides and pet safety kits all have in common. Hint: they’ve unearthed huge growth in regular givers for Aussie charities.

This is a warts and all look at how creative fundraising teams have bucked the trend and grown their regular giving programs without canvassing on the street.


Simone Owens, PA Research Foundation
Jonathon Grapsas, Flat Earth Direct


Session Grading: General/Intermediate

Middle & Major Donors

Hear fundraising analytics expert, Any Tidy and Fred Hollow’s fundraising direct marketing analyst explore the what, why and how of measuring high value fundraising programs – the ones that that give you the most value.

At the end of this session, you will take away a practical overview of what you should be measuring and how, so you can drive better value from your programs, make informed decisions and report up for success


Andy Tidy, Slingshot Data
Erin Hamalainen, The Fred Hollows Foundation


Session Grading: Intermediate/ Advanced

Community, Events & Corporates

This year Oxfam and Deloitte celebrate 20 years of partnership together. Hear from both sides about the pillars which have underpinned Oxfam’s best practice example of a corporate collaboration. We will share the lessons learned in growing the relationship from staff participation in Oxfam’s Trailwalker event, to now incorporating mentoring, pro-bono support, co-creation of innovative new giving products, and expert research which has underpinned Oxfam’s advocacy work. Hear about other examples of Oxfam’s global best practise approaches to building corporate partnerships based on shared value and Deloitte’s insights around what companies are looking for in a strong charity partner.


Gerry Wilde, Responsible Business and The Deloitte Foundation
Gillian Bent, Oxfam Australia


Session Grading: Beginner Fundraisers/ Intermediate

Building Trust & Accountability

The introduction of General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) seriously rocked the UK fundraising world. Even though fundraisers in the UK had two years to prepare, it was still a major transformation project which required huge resources and time.

It is likely that similar regulations will extend to Australia at some point so in this session Olivia outline what it is, what it means for fundraisers and what you should start thinking about.


Olivia Jary MFIA, Sydney Children’s Hospitals Foundation

Fundraising How To…

Direct mail campaigns remain a crucial driver of income for most Australian charities. But in the crowded DM landscape, how do you give your mail program an extra boost? In this session, three charities will share how investing into both innovative and traditional tactics can achieve better results.


Nicole Lovelock, Bush Heritage Australia
Claire Baxter MFIA, Kidney Health Australia
Kelly Nicholls, Refugee Council of Australia


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Personal Effectiveness

In this session we will hear real examples of the challenges fundraisers and boards face in working together but how using the right strategies, tactics and collaboration, boards and fundraisers can actually help transform an organisation.

The session will deliver:

  • Tools to help create fundraising conversations with boards
  • Reporting models to help change how fundraising is measured
  • Education tactics to take directors and fundraisers on a journey

• Navigation pathways to help drive organisational change through board and fundraiser collaboration


Ben Cox FFIA, Gold Coast Hospital Foundation


Session Grading: Intermediate (2-7 years experience) / Advanced (more than 7 years experience)


Creativity & Innovation

Do you want to be more innovative, and build stronger and more effective donor relationships? Then you may want to understand how Human Centred Design (HCD) can be used in fundraising organisations as a powerful tool to improve creativity, collaboration and workplace culture. HCD provides you with a toolbox so you can engage diverse voices and use empathy to create deeper engagement with your donors and beneficiaries.

In this workshop session, Ruth will take delegates through the use of empathy mapping and HCD to create powerful user focussed solutions to our biggest fundraising challenges.


Dr Ruth Knight, QUT ACPNS Alumni Chapter


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)


Please note this session will run until 1:25pm

Individual Giving

This session will explore annual fund direct response fundraising in Canada.  

Using examples from some Canadian success stories, we will look at what works and what doesn’t in the world of: mail, phone, face-to-face, donor acquisition and retention and also monthly giving.  

It will all be directed towards helping you improve the programs you are working on right now or the initiatives you are soon to launch.

Steve Thomas CFRE, Stephen Thomas Ltd


Session Grading: General/Intermediate (2-7 years experience)

Middle & Major Donors

Community, Events & Corporates

Community fundraising connects you with some of your most passionate supporters, but how do you look beyond the here and now to craft a journey of long-term support and success? A well-executed community fundraising program can enhance lifetime value, drive greater ROI and grow opportunities across your organisation.

In this session you will hear lessons learned, and experience gained from start-up programs, to improving outcomes in both low and high performing programs. You’ll receive real and practical examples of how to unlock greater long-term impact from your supporters, look beyond the transactional to lifetime, and create a culture that celebrates community fundraising as a vital pillar in your fundraising strategy!


Rowan Foster MFIA, Endeavour Foundation


Session Grading: Beginner Fundraisers/ Intermediate

Building Trust & Accountability

Measuring Fundraising Effectiveness: The Conversation You are Not Having — and Should Be— about Measuring Your Fundraising Effectiveness

Learn about a new framework, developed by BoardSource, in partnership with Candid, BBB Wise Giving, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals, that is helping boards and leadership teams measure and reflect on the efficacy of their fundraising efforts.


Andy Davis, BoardSource

Fundraising How To…

At this session fundraisers will learn practical tools to build a successful future-proof Digital Strategy, and in how they can influence a Digital-First culture in their organisations.


Online channels are bringing in more revenue and are a growing source of donor recruitment. Maisa will articulate how online can enable all areas of fundraising to thrive. Digital being the cornerstone of strategic growth and donor-centricity.


Over the course of her 10 years’ experience in the Not-for-Profit sector, Maisa has collaborated with teams that brought more than $180m in fundraising revenue to Cerebral Palsy Alliance, via initiatives such as Steptember.   In this session, she’ll share her extensive knowledge of Digital-led fundraising across all areas of giving.


This presentation will be valuable especially for organisations that understand the potential of Digital, but don’t have a structured plan or would like to make their strategies digital-first. Maisa will share tools in how-to map out the immediate quick-wins whilst working towards your greater long-term financial and structural goals.


Maisa Lopes Gomes De Paiva MFIA, Cerebral Palsy Alliance

Personal Effectiveness

FIA has worked with More Growth to create a world first, comprehensive, robust Fundraising Capability Framework to help Not for Profits identify and use the skills they have, recognise gaps in their skills and invest in development of the skills they need for the future.

Martin will explain how the Fundraising Capability Framework was developed, the key skills and levels of responsibility a fundraiser needs for different roles and how using the free tool from the FIA can increase the overall impact of your team. In this session, FIA will also show how the training and development program aligns to the core capabilities fundraisers need.


Martin Paul FFIA, More Growth


Lunch in the Expo


Creativity & Innovation

Most fundraisers know that people give from the heart. A giving decision is an emotional one and so must be prompted by stories that tap into the most deeply felt empathies and resonate with fundamental human experiences.

This presentation draws examples from the great masters of the various arts to demonstrate the foundations of emotional storytelling, whilst drawing analogies with fundraising best practice to help you tell unforgettable stories that will prompt your donors to give. An unusual and entertaining topic, the presentation will leave you with some memorable guidelines on how to harness the power of emotion for your fundraising and will touch your own emotions in the process.


Ben Holgate MFIA, Multiple Sclerosis Limited


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Individual Giving

Like many other organisations, Legacy had a heavy reliance on direct mail. With the rising pressures of contemporary fundraising, we needed to change.

With our advertising and marketing budget drastically cut, and our fundraising targets increased, the time to change was Anzac Day 2019. To ensure we could meet our targets, with our budgets cut in half, we looked across the room at other areas of fundraising. We re-strategised. We innovated. We integrated.

During this session, Erin will take you through how Legacy rolled out the campaign and were able to break down internal silos and objectives to come together and produce a multi-channel, multi-platform fundraising campaign across Digital, Direct Mail, Corporate Engagement and Community Fundraising.  We will share how we strengthen our individual channels, increased ROI and fostered donor loyalty – all on a tight budget.

Don’t get us wrong; it wasn’t all pretty and, we will take you through, warts and all, the challenges of rolling out your first integrated campaign and how you can learn from our mistakes.


Erin McCabe, Legacy Brisbane


Session Grading: Intermediate

Middle & Major Donors

Join high value giving expert Jo & Harriett in this practical session that will provide take away tools for any fundraiser charged with writing donor communications including grant applications.

Whether you are writing a donor appeal, government tender, sponsorship proposal or funding application, evidence that your cause needs funds is critical to motivate your donors to give to your organisation. There has to be strong evidence that you are the best organisation to meet the need you want your prospective donors to support.

Using a variety of examples, across the sector, this session will look at how to collate the best needs data for your proposals and appeals through reviewing a range of research mediums that fundraisers can use when project information provided internally is not strong enough to present a winning pitch.

Takeaway a series of questions you can use internally to draw out what the real benefits of your projects are and what can be reported back on.


Jo Garner FFIA CFRE, Strategic Grants Pty Ltd
Harriett Carter MFIA, Leukaemia Foundation

Session Grading: All Fundraisers

Community, Events & Corporates

While many events are finding it hard to maintain income levels, some are growing. And growing fast.  We use case studies from Canada, the UK and Australia to reveal the underlying art & science driving exceptional event and community revenue.  We all know people are more likely to donate online to someone they know. But how can we build in behavioural nudges and data-informed journeys to really raise the most? How can we finesse the event experience, to help build brand loyalty and retention? And how can we convert community fundraisers into regular donors?    With examples of both physical and virtual events, we’ll answer those questions to share five key insights. We’ll also grapple with what we can learn from GoFundMe and Facebook’s fundraising tools.  Join us to learn how inspiring events achieved knock-out results, and take away quick wins you can use. 


Meredith Dwyer FFIA CFRE, HomeMade Digital Australia


Session Grading: General Fundraiser (all fundraisers)

Building Trust & Accountability

Understanding donor motivations and behaviour is essential for the creation of effective fundraising campaigns. In this session, Dr Sneddon will present cutting edge research on how personal value priorities relate to giving and choice of charitable cause. This work draws on extensive research undertaken at the Centre for Human and Cultural Values, UWA on how values influence prosocial behaviour, including giving. Dr Sneddon will present results from a study of the values and giving behaviour of over 4000 Australians aged 18 to 80 years. She will then discuss how fundraisers can apply human values to campaigns aimed at attracting and retaining donors.

Jo Sneddon, The University of Western Australia

Fundraising How To…

We’ve all had that idea for a fundraising campaign that sounded brilliant in our mind, but turned out to be a disaster.  And most of us have probably had that heart stopping moment you realise the wrong address is on your reply paid envelope.  Well, you’re not alone. And if you’re looking for some fundraising therapy to remind you that we’ve all had one (or nine) of those moments, then drag yourself along to this session.  You’ll hear (via video) from some of the world’s best fundraising practitioners who’ll share, face in their palm, their worst ever fundraising mistakes.  This isn’t just a cringe fest with lots of laughs, there’s lessons to be learnt from each and every one of them.  And short of jetting off to a conference overseas, you’re unlikely to hear from so many awesome (and honest) fundraisers in one hour, in your lifetime. This really will be a ‘how to’ session, helping you avoid the biggest mistakes some of the world’s best fundraisers have made.


Jonathon Grapsas, Flat Earth Direct
and special guests

Personal Effectiveness

Nigel Harris FFIA CFRE, Mater Foundation
Greg McGahan, Mater Foundation
Lorelle Silveira MFIA, Foodbank Queensland


SOFII’s I Wish I’d Thought Of That.


SOFII is a showcase of fundraising expertise and innovation and the SOFII collection aims to be the most comprehensive, best organised, and most inspiring collection of fundraising related content from around the world.


At this internationally renowned session, a range of fundraising specialists will present a single inspiring fundraising idea that they wish they’d thought of – an innovative, replicable idea that we can all learn from. But the caveat is the idea cannot be their own and must be someone else’s.


Make sure you don’t miss out on attending the Closing Plenary of the conference.


Katherine Ash, RFDS Queensland Section
Gavin Coopey FFIA, More Strategic
Esther Kwaku, The Nerve Network
Rochelle Nolan, Lifeline Australia
Ann Ronning MFIA, Canberra Hospital Foundation
Alexis Escavy, Greenpeace



Stick around for the farewell drinks following the closing plenary session, to unwind at the end of the conference and network with the new friends you’ve made.


Date: Friday 28 February

Time: 4.30 – 5.30pm

Ticket included in conference registration.

Early Bird Registrations Valid until Friday 13 December 2019 (prices are inclusive of GST)

Staff of Organisational Member
Conference & Dinner Package Conference Only Day only (Thursday or Friday only)
$1,454 $1,345 $695
$1,699 $1,590 $875
$2,160 $2,000 $1,095

Regular Registrations From Saturday 14 December 2019 (prices are inclusive of GST)

Staff of Organisational Member
Conference & Dinner Package Conference Only Day only (Thursday or Friday only)
$1,859 $1,750 $750
$2,229 $2,120 $960
$2,810 $2,650 $1,200

Other Pricing Prices are inclusive of GST

Staff of Organisational Member
Pre-Conference Masterclasses Fundraisers’ Gala Awards Dinner
$545 $185
$620 $200
$785 $220

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