Australians wanting to assist people affected by the tragedy at Dreamworld on the Gold Coast by donating funds, are being urged to go to

Working with a range of partner and government organisations, Australian charity GIVIT is managing donations to assist after this terrible incident.

GIVIT CEO, Juliette Wright, said GIVIT’s website is an easy, quick and effective way of donating directly to those in need.

“News of this tragic incident shocked everyone at GIVIT just as it shocked Australians all over the country,” Mrs Wright said. “We are working with a range of partners to manage donations following this tragedy on their behalf using our website

“We know from past events Australians are incredibly generous and want to help the families who have been left devastated. GIVIT channels this generosity and lets people know exactly what is required so front line services aren’t inundated by donations they don’t need.

“After the explosion at the Serves You Right Café in Ravenshoe, GIVIT facilitated the donation of more than $800,000 in funds.

“The online platform removes the administrative and financial burden for councils and charities as well saving valuable resources for critical activities.

People can give money via GIVIT’S website of which 100% will go directly to those affected.

Mrs Wright said GIVIT has a proven record of being easy to use, efficient and most importantly effective following incidents such as this.

“GIVIT’s online platform has facilitated more than 327,000 donations and supports more than 1,200 trusted Australian charities by ensuring they have the exact items their clients need to recover.

To pledge your donation please visit

For more information or interviews please contact Ash Moore, GIVIT’s Media Advisor, on

About two years ago, for my own mental health, I decided rather than researching causes of poverty to research ways to make a meaningful difference through GIVIT and GIVIT Kids.

I have dedicated years to this.

Then just last week, our volunteer Kirsty, sent me the latest ACOSS statistics about children living in poverty in Australia, and it shocked me to my core. On our shift, this year 2016, we are finding more and more children falling into the poverty cycle.

The ACOSS report states that now, 17.4% of all children in Australia are living in poverty, which is by the international standards, not the lucky country standards. This is an increase of two percentage points over the past 10 years, from 2004-2014.

This two percent is a massive and horrific issue.

This two percent points is nearly criminal. These children do not have the basic essentials and they are suffering. They don’t have enough food, educational or personal care items and this affects their growth and ability to thrive and strive. They lack simple things, things that surround me now as I am writing this.

My usual depression kicks in when I talk about this topic. I wish for many things to change; the cost of living, the mental and physical health, as well as the well being of a family unit, but the facts are – we have Australian children who are starving. I get so sad thinking of all the charities we work with who are not spinning in the mud, they are working so bloody hard to help these families and yet we are slipping deeply into a very dark place for our nation.

At an event last night, I sat beside a school teacher who said she frequently buys her students items. She recently bought a boy some pants, and frequently gives her own money to buy food for students. She has to feed one little girl every day because her father does not feed her.

I am now renewed in my passion to ensure every Australian school signs up and registers to receive items through GIVIT and GIVIT Kids. They are on the front-line, seeing our children every day, every week, and have their eyes on the children in most urgent need.

Please forward this blog to any teacher you know and get them to sign up. They seriously fit our criteria, and can register to receive any needed item. Our teachers, all of our teachers, now work directly with children who are impoverished, marginalised, and very vulnerable.

The donation of landing lights and a defibrillator from GIVIT has made the community of Ilkurlka, in remote south east Western Australia, safer for travellers and locals alike.

Every year for the past 29 years, Jamie Lawson and his family have taken rally participants around some of the most isolated parts of Australia in car rallies. Last year Jamie founded The Road Boss Rally, which now raises funds for GIVIT.

While at Ilkurlka Roadhouse in June this year, Jamie saw that the community needed landing lights to make night-time landings for the RFDS possible.

“Ilkurlka is so far off the beaten track that most rallies would never go there, and that means there aren’t many options available if people find themselves in a bit of strife,” said Jamie. “When we got there and heard that there were no landing lights and that meant RFDS planes couldn’t land at night, we really wanted to help out.”

“We talked it through, spoke to GIVIT’s CEO, Juliette Wright and she said that was definitely something we could help with.”

“I represent a special group of people on the Road Boss Rally and it’s great to see their efforts go to something so real and tangible as the defibrillator and landing lights.”

Manager of the Ilkurlka Community Road House Phillip Merry said it was with “stunned disbelief” that he watched the 80 cars of the Road Boss Rally roll into Ilkurlka in June.

“Ilkurlka is basically just a roadhouse which usually has a population of one or two depending on who’s there to run it or if we have a group of rangers staying overnight,” Mr Merry said.

“But quite a few people came out from the Tjuntjuntjara community to see the rally so there must have been around 250 or more people there.”

“Ilkurlka is extremely remote – about 750 kilometres west of Coober Pedy, 600km east of Laverton, WA and about 130km north of Tjuntuntjara.”

“We’re basically a refuelling and supply point with a population of whoever is at the roadhouse so to have this potentially life-saving equipment here is a real comfort.”

“Of course we hope that we never have to use it but you know what they say, ‘Hope for the best and prepare for the worst.’”

CEO and Founder of GIVIT Juliette Wright said she was thrilled that GIVIT was able to provide these items to Ilkurlka.

“It’s nice to know that anyone who lives near or happens to be travelling through that part of Western Australia is a little bit safer,” Mrs Wright said. “The Road Boss Rally led by Jamie Lawson is a fantastic group of people and GIVIT is proud to work with them.”

The 29th Road Boss Rally ran from June 10 to 25, 2016, starting in Port Macquarie on the east coast and finishing in Perth on the west taking 75 cars and 180 participants through 8000km of back roads and rugged bush tracks in very remote desert areas.

The Road Boss Rally this year raised $250,000 for GIVIT.

Residents across Queensland are being urged to get ready to help their local community as severe weather events with storm and cyclone season draw closer.

In partnership with the Queensland Government, GIVIT manages all offers of donated goods and services after severe weather events and other disasters.

GIVIT CEO and Founder Juliette Wright said through the website, local residents are able to match their generosity with genuine need by finding out exactly what is needed in impacted regions.

“When disasters occur, we will work with frontline services in the impacted region to identify their exact needs and list them online,” she said, “That’s why we are urging the local community to prepare for recovery by heading to GIVIT’s website now,” said Mrs Wright.

“We are there to support local charities, community groups and councils in their time of greatest need – when recovering from disasters.”

SES Regional Manager Mark Dole said it was important for Queensland residents to prepare for disasters.

“To get ready for storm and cyclone season, we’re asking residents to prepare an emergency plan and emergency kit,” said Mr Dole. “An emergency kit should be able to sustain you and your family for at least three days if essential services are disrupted or you have been isolated by flood water.

“Involve everyone in your household when preparing and practising your emergency plan. It’s vital everyone in your family knows what to do during a severe weather event. By taking these simple steps you can help the SES by first helping yourself.”

Mr Dole said residents should also consider how they would recover after a severe weather event, including what to do if their property or possessions are damaged.

“GIVIT do great work managing the donations of goods and services after a disaster, helping those residents who have lost everything,” he said. “This allows emergency services to focus on those residents who are vulnerable or in need of emergency assistance.”

During the 2011 Queensland floods, the GIVIT website received 1.8 million hits in 10 days and more than 33,500 goods were matched in three weeks.

This led to the establishment of a dedicated GIVIT Disaster Recovery service activated during the Bundaberg floods, Cyclone Ita, Malanda Floods, Tropical Cyclone Marcia, the South East Queensland Floods, Beenleigh House Fire and the Ravenshoe Café Explosion.

Mrs Wright said it is important that people don’t send unwanted goods or items into disaster zones.

“We know from experience that after natural disasters there is an outpouring of support from Australians, the GIVIT website is a fantastic way of channelling that support.

“This saves councils and charities both time and money when it comes to managing donations and is a free service they can sign up for.

“We would urge local charities to register at now and locals to think about what high quality items they have that they could potentially donate so that after a disaster strikes, communities are ready help themselves.”

GIVIT is an online not-for profit connecting those who have with those who need items, via its website For more information or to arrange an interview please call Ash Moore on 0407 094 079 or QFES Media on (07) 3635 3310.

By GIVIT’s Head of Communication, Kayla:

I have no idea how to start this, I’m not even sure what I’m trying to say. But I can’t think of anything else… I can’t do anything else… until it’s been said.

This is an opinion piece, my opinion. The thoughts that have continued to swirl round and round my mind regarding our current drought appeal for Georgetown in Far North Queensland.

A few weeks ago we received an email from a local charity letting us know that slow internet speeds in the area mean some families living on remote properties are unable to meet obligations for distance education and are instead needing to drive their children long distances (two to three hours) to school.

After years of crippling drought, these added fuel costs are stretching already maxed budgets, and many families simply can’t afford it. The children can’t get to school.

We’ve since continued to hear stories about the devastating situation these families are in and the challenges they face: huge debt, starving cattle, endless despair, no income, no food, businesses they’ve worked a lifetime to build crumbling under them. And now, children who can’t receive an education.

Yesterday I received an email about one family and stared at my computer screen for minutes in disbelief – processing the horrific situation they’re enduring.

It kept playing on my mind and last night over dinner I shared these stories with my partner Lee, a third-generation cattle farmer, and he listened to me in despair. What can we do? How can we feel okay when there’s so many others who don’t? We looked outside over the green grass hills out at the fat, happy cows and saw the privileges someone else is searching so desperately for.

When I looked at him I knew that if we choose to have children one day, despite the many struggles we may face, no education won’t be one of them. I won’t have to worry about if my children can get to school. I’m not going to have to wake up and tell them that mummy and daddy just can’t afford it today, we can’t fill up the car. They can’t see their friends or teachers, hand in their assessment, attend sports day, the school excursion or learn about that subject they’re so interested in. I’m not going to have to go to sleep at night devastated because this situation is affecting their future.

I’m not going to wake up the next day and open an empty fridge, wondering how I’m going to feed my family. I’m not going to have to stress about using my underwear for fear of them becoming old and worn when I don’t have money for a replacement. I’m not going to know I can’t get my children to the doctors when they’re sick, that I won’t be able to buy sanitary items during my next period and be forced to use rags. I’m not going to watch my husband leave for work every single day knowing he can’t help us.

Now, as I sit here in an office with electricity, a flushing toilet, clean water and internet I feel devastated there are others who don’t have this. As our General Manager, Marcus, said “it breaks my heart to think I’m about to go and eat a nice lunch and someone else can’t.”

What are we going to do? How are we going to help? GIVIT is a charity for charities right? Can’t we do more? I’m angry, I’m frustrated and devastated… but I’m hopeful. I’m hopeful because I know GIVIT can help. We are their chance.

We are the national voice for these 70 families. We are the portal spreading the plights of these vulnerable people to the 23 million others Australians who can help. We are that connection.

We can’t change the internet speeds but we can give these families the chance to feel hope, kindness and connection. We can get the children to school, we can give the dad new underwear and we can provide food vouchers so mum can fill the fridge for the first time in years. We can let them know that they are not alone and someone else cares. Maybe we can even save a life.

I think about you, reading this, and wonder what you’re thinking. Is this pulling you like it does me? Is it breaking your heart? Are you driven to help? Will you?

At GIVIT we don’t often request donated funds. In fact, we try incredibly hard not to. Money is valuable – we all need our own. But right now, it’s very likely someone else needs it more than you. If you want to help please visit our website and click ‘Drought Relief’ in the dropdown box. You can even put ‘Georgetown’ in the comments. I am proud to say every single cent of that money will go straight to purchasing vouchers for locally these families.

Every time we get a Drought Relief donation the team cheers, a difference is being made. There’s a long way to go, but imagine the impact we could have if we all gave a $50 fuel voucher!!

I recently had the honour of being a keynote speaker at the Queensland Disability Conference and spent a wonderful 40 minutes describing GIVIT’s journey, my journey and our values. I was talking to a room full of caring people who were disability service providers, social workers and carers, many of whom are in desperate need of support.

Firstly, I spoke about how service providers use GIVIT while doing the hard, hard work of ensuring our most vulnerable receive the care they need. It is such an important job in our society, and it is all about to be affected by the NDIS rollout – a change which seems to be very welcome.

Then, I spoke about GIVIT’s values, my values and why we do the work we do… more specifically why all social workers do the work they do. I also mentioned how our industry is plagued by unspoken truths about compassion fatigue, burnout and mostly thankless work. I emphasized that it is important we all get through these periods by staying connected to our original values of why we became involved in this work in the first place.

Remember why you started.

I concluded the speech with a plea which I want to share with you all today. A plea and call to action for all service providers… LET US BE INVOLVED and LET US BE CONNECTED… especially to your client.

Let us, everyday Australians, connect to your cause and empower us to help.

You are the only one who can let us know what’s going on. The only one who knows the true need. The only one letting us connect to some of our most marginalised Australians so we can understand how to best get involved in improving their lives (while ensuring their privacy in all matters).

What I know is that social workers and carers are on the cold-face of our vulnerable communities. If they don’t communicate the needs of the sector to the wider public (via mechanisms like GIVIT) we cannot be involved… and we really, really want to be!

A recent survey showed 97% of items requested by social workers and charities through GIVIT are donated by generous Australians. We know people want to give, and that they love positively impacting someone’s, albeit a strangers, life.

I feel that when we give, we feel connected to our community. When we are connected, it improves our feeling of contribution and also our personal well being. I beg, BEG, BEG social workers to let us know what all our vulnerable need and then maybe we can make your and their life a little easier. We can also let them know they are not alone.

If you work directly with someone who is vulnerable please register to let us know what you need to make your job easier, and what your client needs to make their life easier!

It isn’t just vulnerable individuals that need support but those selfless, compassionate, caring and sensitive carers that work with them every day.

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Living with the despair of ongoing drought can take years to overcome, and even when the grass turns green there is still a hidden layer of pain.

Often those affected are reluctant to ask for help.

GIVIT is working with an organisation in Queensland’s Gulf to help ease some of that hidden pain by jointly helping rural households and local businesses.

Slow internet speeds in the area mean some families are unable to meet obligations for distance education and instead drive their children long distances to school.

These added fuel costs are stretching budgets.

We are requesting funds to purchase fuel vouchers from a local roadhouse to ensure ongoing, vital education for these kids.

Your donation will also help us buy groceries to be delivered with the mail run or a voucher from a local hardware shop, pharmacy, or store.

Every dollar we can spend locally helps energise these families and their community.

Please help by donating to GIVIT’s ‘Drought Relief’ appeal on our Donate Funds page.

Thank you so much for your generosity!

Imagine if you could raise money for GIVIT by simply shopping online. Well… now you can!

One of our wonderful volunteers, Alison, recently launched Gifts4Good – an online shopping site which allows you to buy from more than 500 of Australia’s most-loved retailers while automatically raising funds for GIVIT.

When you use the Gifts4Good website to do your shopping it will automatically place a donation to GIVIT, meaning every purchase you make is helping someone else in need.

While volunteering at GIVIT, Alison developed this wonderful website as she wanted to make it easier for people to support their favourite cause.

“Gifts4Good is about shoppers being able to choose which causes they want to support. Many people have more than one favourite cause so I really wanted to create a tool which allows them to choose their preferred charity at the time of purchase,” Alison said.

“However GIVIT is set as the national default charity. This means when everyday Australians visit the website and start shopping, they are automatically raising vital funds for GIVIT.”

Alison was also motivated to develop a ‘Shop 4 Good Reminder’ app when her friends told her they had shopped online, but forgotten to use the Gifts4Good website.

She realised a reminder tool was an effective way to remind shoppers they could donate to their favourite charities.

“I knew it was important to be able to remind supporters about Gifts4Good at the exact moment they were ready to buy,” Alison said. “Now, I’ve created a Shop 4 Good Reminder pop-up to do this automatically which asks if they would like to make a donation at no extra cost.”

Once you set up the Shop 4 Good Reminder, the app works with your internet browser to identify Gifts4Good retailers when searching online – then alerts you to them.

We ask you to consider doing your shopping online, and while you’re at it using Gifts4Good to help raise funds for GIVIT and support our mission of connecting those who have, with those in need.

Head on over and start shopping! Please, help spread the word too!

Growing up is hard to do, especially in a community which faces ongoing hardship.

After years of drought chipping away at the resilience of Western Queensland families, one community is working to boost the self-confidence of its teenagers.

Locals are holding workshops to teach the young women how to feel good about themselves, present well to others, build self-esteem and gain important skills to secure their first job.

The community wants to give them items to take home to help implement their new skills and maintain confidence.

Through GIVIT’s Drought Relief Appeal, more than $4,100.00 has been donated by generous GIVIT givers for these women!

All money will be spent locally to purchase items including new shoes, cosmetics, personal care items or an outfit from a local store.

If you’d like to support GIVIT’s Drought Relief please give here and select ‘Drought Relief’.

Thank you so much for your generosity!

South East Queensland has been hit by severe storms and residents living on the Sunshine Coast and in North Brisbane who lost everything are in need of assistance.

In partnership with front line local agencies, GIVIT is managing offers of donated goods and services to assist in the recovery of this event.

GIVIT Founder and CEO, Juliette Wright, said GIVIT’s website enables everyday Australians to see exactly what impacted families need, and then donate easily, safely and directly to them.

“Right now we know there are two families in Mooloolaba and at least 21 households in Aspley which have lost all belongings through water damage and are in desperate need of support.

“One family has moved into temporary rental housing and urgently requires furniture such as Queen Beds, a freezer, washing machine and basic kitchen essentials.

“There are many other families who need our help. We are working with front line agencies in the affected regions to discover the full need, and then will be listing requests on our website in the coming days and weeks.

“At this time, we ask your generosity be channelled into cash donations of which 100% will be used to purchase essential items. GIVIT always, wherever possible, purchases locally to support local businesses as they also recover,” Ms Wright said.

To donate, please visit, click on the ‘Donate Funds’ page and select the drop down option ‘South East Storms’ in the donation option.

Ms Wright said GIVIT’s website gives generous Australians an effective way of donating directly to those in need without overwhelming charities on the ground.

“GIVIT’s role is to support local charities, community groups and councils in the impacted regions by helping them obtain exactly what is required to support those affected,” Ms Wright said.

“We know from past events Australians are incredibly generous and will want to help those who have been devastated by the storms. GIVIT channels this generosity and lets people know exactly what is required so front line services aren’t inundated by donations they don’t need.

“The online platform removes the need to physically collect, sort and store donations, significantly reducing the administrative and financial burden for charities as well saving valuable resources for critical recovery activities.

“We also ensure items donated are of a high quality. It is about giving exactly what is needed while respecting the dignity of the recipient by only giving quality donations.”

To see what is urgently needed by residents impacted by the storms, or to pledge your donation or offer of assistance please visit If you are a local charity or front line service wanting to access donated goods and services, please register at

For more information or interviews please contact Kayla Brereton, GIVIT Media and Communications on