Our face-to-face fundraising

Frequently asked questions about our door-to-door fundraising program.

Garvan is committed to supporting the work of our incredible researchers through fundraising so that they can predict, prevent, diagnose and treat the diseases affecting human health most today.

Face-to-face fundraising is one of the most efficient and cost-friendly ways to find generous members of the public who want to join us in the fight against disease on an ongoing basis to make the most impact.

We have teams of face-to-face fundraisers in many locations around New South Wales and Queensland talking about Garvan's medical research. Our teams will also sometimes go on road trips to other states such as Tasmania. They are trained fundraisers, acting on behalf of Garvan, and will be knocking on doors to share some of our amazing research programs and ask for your support.

We promise to respect our donors and the community, and adhere to all legal requirements as we engage the public through this program.


Contact us

We're happy to answer any questions.

Call us on 1300 73 66 77 or email: foundation@garvan.org.au

About Garvan's face-to-face fundraising

How is face-to-face fundraising kept Covid-19 safe?

Garvan fundraisers will be following a strict set of guidelines enforced by the Public Fundraising Regulatory Association to remain Covid-19 safe. Some of these measures include frequent hand and equipment sanitising, daily temperature screening, and physical distancing of at least 1.5 metres with the public. On request, signup forms can be completed on your own device.

There is no face-to-face fundraising in areas declared as hotspots by federal and/or state authorities, and records of which fundraisers worked when and where are kept for contact tracing purposes.

How do I recognise a genuine Garvan fundraiser? 

Our fundraisers will be wearing Garvan-branded uniforms (light grey shirts, black jackets, indigo logo) and will have ID tags on lanyards. If you are unsure if a fundraiser is genuine you can ask to see their ID which they are required to wear at all times while working. It should clearly state who they work for (Earth Impact or Community Collective) and that they are representing the Garvan Institute of Medical Research.

Is my personal data secure?

We take the security of your personal details extremely seriously and have measures in place to protect them. See our privacy policy for more information.

If you have chosen to support us by direct debit, you will receive a follow up phone call and welcome pack to confirm we have the correct details and to thank you for your kindness and generosity.

Direct debit is one of the most secure and effective ways of giving to charity. It reduces administration costs and generates a predictable and sustainable stream of income, allowing us to plan for the future.

Where will the fundraisers be operating?         

If you would like to know the postcodes where these fundraisers are operating in a given week, please contact our Supporter Services team at 1300 73 66 77 or via email at foundation@garvan.org.au.

What times of the day can fundraisers knock on doors?     

Permitted operating hours in NSW are:

  • Monday-Friday: 10:00am - 8:00pm AEST
  • Weekend and Public Holidays: 10:00am - 6:00pm AEST
  • Christmas Day & Good Friday: No fundraising permitted.

Permitted operating hours in QLD are:

  • Monday-Sunday: 9:00am - 5:00pm AEST

Who are Earth Impact and Community Collective? 

Earth Impact and Community Collective are a face-to-face agencies who supply donor acquisition services to a range of charity clients. They are both registered by the Public Fundraising Regulatory Authority and comply to all best practise standards.         

Are councils and police aware of fundraisers operating in their areas?  

Councils require fundraisers to have permits to operate on street campaigns but not for residential campaigns. However, all fundraisers must carry an ID badge which must be displayed at all times. The ID badge states who they work for (Earth Impact or Community Collective) and who they work on behalf of (Garvan).

How do I make a complaint about a fundraiser?

If you have a negative experience with a fundraiser, please note their name, then please contact our Supporter Services team at foundation@garvan.org.au, or by calling 1300 73 66 77 to lodge a complaint. We will investigate and take appropriate action as required.

Why we've begun face-to-face fundraising

Face-to-face fundraising has been used for about 20 years by many of the most trusted charities around the world.

The Garvan Institute needs to raise more money for our vital medical research and to accelerate discovery.  Because the donations from our face-to-face program are monthly, ongoing gifts, they help to give us a predictable and sustainable source of funding so that our 600 researchers can continue their critical research and plan for the future.

How much of your donation will go to medical research?

For every dollar Garvan receives from the government, we need to raise at least another 70 cents to continue our vital medical research. If we didn’t generate additional funds, many research projects would not be realised.

We pay the third party fundraising provider a one-off fee for every new regular monthly donor who kindly decides to support us. This fee varies according to how much is donated. While this fee is a one-off, most new supporters choose to continue giving to Garvan for many years, and often in different ways, making face-to-face fundraising a very cost-effective way to raise funds over the long-term.

How is Garvan funding this campaign?

Garvan is funding this campaign from its overall fundraising budget – which is pre-allocated, not directly from an individual’s donation. Of all the funds Garvan receives, only 12 percent go towards its total administration costs and fundraising.

How will Garvan benefit from this program?    

The ongoing funding from our face-to-face program will help to give our researchers the momentum needed to make amazing discoveries.  With the ability to better plan for our future thanks to this reliable form of support, we can develop better ways to predict, diagnose, treat and ultimately to stop diseases before they start.

People may be concerned about the assertiveness of street fundraisers or their approach; how will you manage this?

Our face-to-face fundraisers are trained professionals. They will not be stopping people on the street, but instead will be visiting and speaking to households and residents.

Face-to-face doesn’t work does it? So why do it?   

Actually, face-to-face is a highly successful method of fundraising and has been responsible for many charities being able to increase their impact. Across the charity sector, about 80% of all donors who give a monthly gift first donate via face-to-face.

Garvan is starting this program so we can raise more funding for our medical research – to predict, prevent, diagnose and treat disease.

Is face-to-face regulated?    

Face-to-face is regulated by the Office of Fair Trading (NSW) and the industry has two bodies who are responsible for compliance – the Public Fundraising Regulatory Authority (PFRA) and the Fundraising Institute of Australia (FIA).  

How are fundraisers paid?

The agency we use pays their staff in accordance with the Fairwork Australia rules, which set out entitlements and rights of workers.

How do you ensure a vulnerable person isn’t signed up for a donation?

Our fundraisers abide by a strict codes of conduct and rules about who they can and cannot sign up, and one of those groups is vulnerable people.