Conservation United is very different to all existing charities: we’re not just another charity – we’re here to help existing charities find the funding they need by inspiring a new approach to donating!
Our objective is to provide you with a transparent mechanism that ensures 100% of your donation goes through to fully-fund critical conservation projects being undertaken by existing charities. With no minimum donation or forced subscriptions, none of your donation absorbed by us and no donation wasted by half-funding projects, Conservation United is excited to start helping you fund solutions, not problems!
No – good question! In many ways, that’s the whole point! With everyone going around choosing to donate to different charities (often working on the same or similar projects), the result is that donations are often spread too thinly, preventing many of the charities from actually accumulating enough donations to fully-fund and finish their project. Conservation United is here to allow your donations to be distributed more effectively, ensuring projects are fully-funded to completion. You can see the spectrum of projects vying for funding by looking at our set of ‘Conservation Partners’, and see that 100% of your donations are being passed on to very worthy projects. At Conservation United, we encourage you to donate to our broad, ongoing conservation vision, rather than just to one project.
At Conservation United, we don’t have the insight or the desire to play God – to choose which projects live and which die. Instead, we figure it’s fairer to let those who know best decide. At the end of each funding cycle, each of our Conservation Partner charities put forward their most critical project for funding, and then, collectively, they all vote on which project(s) will be fully-funded from the accumulated donations. Conservation Partners cannot vote for their own project; their collective decision is overseen by a Fund Committee (comprised of C.U. directors / board members) and any left over donations simply carry over to the next funding round. Rules exist (see below) for which kind of projects are valid, and once a given Conservation Partner has received funding for one project, they are unable to receive funding for another until they have demonstrated success in the first.
In the event of more projects being put forward than can reasonably be assessed and understood accurately, the Fund Committee will create a shortlist according to a project’s suitability, calculated by a transparent, objective formula that is proportional to how critical the target species is, how significant an impact the project’s success would have on that species, how likely the project is to succeed, and inversely proportional to the project’s cost.
To be eligible for funding from Conservation United, conservation projects must meet several criteria including (but not limited to) being:
(a) a specific project in direct aid of an animal listed as ‘Vulnerable’, ‘Endangered’, ‘Critically Endangered’, or ‘Extinct In The Wild’ on the ICUN Red List, or if an environmental project, then the location must be a key habitat for such a species;
(b) fully costed/budgeted and able to be completed within five years; and
(c) put forward by a ‘Conservation Partner’, which itself must be a registered organisation with the capacity and capability to carry out the project and provide annual reports or similar if funded.
Projects need not single-handedly hope to save a species from extinction – merely a achieving a specific step towards that goal is sufficient. Examples could include everything from simply building a new breeding enclosure or monitoring station, right through to a rat-eradication program or educational campaign designed to shift political will.
None! Conservation United will always pass on 100% of the money we receive from you to fully-fund critical conservation projects put forward by our Conservation Partners. Our own expenses are covered by bank interest earned on your donations as well as corporate sponsorships.
Bank Australia has formed a unique and exciting partnership with us, allowing us to accept credit card donations online without the usual fees or minimum charges that force most charities to set a minimum donation. Typically, a credit card transaction attracts about a 3% processing fee (often added to the price by the vendor), along with a $0.30 per-transaction fee from the bank. That means for a $1 donation, a whopping 33% would normally be absorbed before it even reached the bank account, where other fees then continue to nibble away at the remaining 67c!
We’re negotiating a brand new system for accepting card donations online that will at last make micro-donations viable – with no ‘per-transaction’ fee at all, just a fixed, low overall % fee, which we’ll on top of your donation, so for a $1 donation you’d actually be billed approximately $1.018 (less than 2c more, which the credit card processing service takes), and the full $1 will end up into our bank account, which itself has no fees!
Thank you Bank Australia for making Conservation United possible!
No. While we are a fully registered charity with the ACNC (Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission) and you can see out listing HERE, we have not sought to make donations tax-deductible because for this to occur, donations must be more than $2 (we don’t encourage the idea of a ‘minimum donation’), and it wouldn’t apply to international donations anyway.
Correct – not all the world’s conservation issues can be fixed by throwing money at them, but many of them could be, and money can also fund the instigation of change at a higher level, including education and politics.
When you donate, you can optionally allow your name to appear on Conservation United’s live scrolling feed of donations to inspire others to donate, but it’s not mandatory.
A Conservation Partner can be any registered organisation or charity working in the conservation sector that has a critical conservation project which they would like to have fully-funded. There is no sign-up fee or entry requirements – a Conservation Partner must simply be prepared to submit their budgeted proposal for their most critical conservation project, be willing to read and vote on other Conservation Partner’s proposals, and if funded, have the capacity and capability to carry out their project, including provide annual reports.
If you run such an organisation and would like to become a Conservation Partner, or know of an organisation that you think should be a Conservation Partner, then please let us know!
Any company that would like to assist us in helping conserve the world’s critical wildlife and habitats can become a Corporate Sponsor. There are various ways different companies can help us, but generally, all we ask of our Corporate Sponsors is that they proudly inform their employees of their new conservation initiative offering to match any private donation that any of their employees would like to make to Conservation United, dollar-for-dollar with a corporate donation. Wouldn’t that make your staff feel good about working for your company? If you’re a manager then get in touch with us, and if you’re an employee, then get in touch with your manager! =)
While 100% of public donations are passed on to fully-fund our Conservation Partner projects, corporate donations (along with bank interest from all donations) is what helps fund Conservation United itself – so without Corporate Sponsors, we couldn’t afford to operate.
Do you? Great! We’re currently seeking ambassadors from around the world who think Conservation United is a good idea. If you know someone of influence who might make a suitable ambassador to help us spread the word, please let us know!
Yes! We are still in start-up phase, and every extra little bit of help is invaluable. We would appreciate assistance in everything, from marketing, PR and media contacts, through to accounting, graphic design and legal services. If you share our vision and would like to help, please just contact us – we’d love to hear from you.
Right now our primary focus is finding our first few Ambassadors, Conservation Partners and Corporate Sponsors. If you are (or know someone who might be) up for such a position, please let us know!
We are still negotiating the finer points of the revolutionary new micro-donation system for online card processing at the moment, but once it’s up and running, you’ll be able to donate though the ‘make a donation’ links all around the website, or, you can just click HERE!
Currently, we’re accepting donations via Direct Deposit only – please CONTACT US for details. Thanks!