Effective altruism is about answering one simple question: how can we use our resources to help others the most?

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Donations

    1. Are donations tax-deductible in Australia?

      Yes! Effective Altruism Australia (ABN 87 608 863 467) is endorsed as a Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). Donations of $2 or more are tax deductible in Australia.
    2. When will I get my receipt?

      You will receive a receipt for donations once we confirm it has arrived in our bank account. For bank transfers, this will usually take 1-2 days, whereas the wait should be no longer than 15 minutes for credit cards. If you do not receive a receipt within the relevant timeframe, please send an email to info@eaa.org.au including your full name, a description, the amount donated and the name of your banking institution. We’ll hop onto it straight away. Also note that receipts may occasionally end up in your spam inbox.
    3. Will I get an EOFY receipt for recurrent donations?

      Yes you will. For the 2019-2020 financial year, these were sent on 9 July 2020. If you didn’t get yours, you are welcome to contact us at info@eaa.org.au and we’ll look into it. Note that we separately sent you a receipt for each donation received.
    4. How can I make a donation?

      You can currently donate to EAA in two different ways, by bank transfer or by credit card. Both methods allow us to process your payment at no cost to you, although note that for large donations (over $2,000) we prefer bank transfer, as it reduces the fees we pay. To donate by bank transfer you will need to register your intention to make a single, or recurring, transfer to our bank account. You can do this by completing the form on our donation page. Once we have registered your intention to donate we will send you a unique code. You will need to use this unique code as a reference number when sending your payment to our bank account so that we can identify your payment. We will send you a tax receipt for every payment we receive from you. You should receive your receipt within 1-2 days. To donate by credit card, simply follow the instructions and fill in your details on our donation page.
    5. Can I donate with my credit card or paypal?

      You can now make donations via credit card.
    6. What should I do if I forgot to include my reference number in my bank transfer or made a typo?

      Please email info@eaa.org.au with details of your donation, including name, description, amount and the name of your banking institution.
    7. How does Effective Altruism Australia meet its operational costs?

      Running any charity has costs. To get your donation to its destination we need to meet our regulatory obligations and cover the costs of auditors, accountants, government registrations, banking facilities, websites, software and more. Like most charities, a portion of each donation goes to these kinds of expenses. In the last financial year (2018-2019), our operational expenses were 2.84% of the overall amount of donations we received.
    8. Has Effective Altruism Australia changed its operational expenses policy?

      Yes. Previously Effective Altruism Australia separately raised funds to meet its operational expenses while providing 100% of donations received through this website to our partner charities. Our new policy is more transparent, more administratively efficient and sustainable. Read more about the illusion of “0% overheads”.
    9. Can I donate to EAA and not one of its partner charities?

      This is certainly possible and we welcome any assistance in meeting our running costs. Please contact us at info@eaa.org.au to discuss.
    10. Can I increase or decrease the amount for my recurring monthly donation coming out of my bank account?

      For recurring bank payments, you need log into your bank and change the amount of the recurring transfer. Some banks require you to cancel the existing transfer and make a new one. Please ensure you keep the original reference number in your recurring donation so that our automated system can match it to you.
    11. How do I cancel recurring bank transfers?

      You can cancel recurring bank transfers via your banking tool. Once you cancel the transfer, there is nothing further you need to do.
    12. Can I arrange for my employer to make donations to EAA and its partner charities out of my pre-tax earnings?

      Yes, Effective Altruism Australia actively supports workplace giving arrangements and is happy to work with you and your employer’s payroll team to set this up. This can be facilitated through existing workplace giving platforms that your employer can register with, or through direct electronic transfers from your employer to us. There are already many Australians making donations to us through such arrangements. If you would like to discuss how to make this happen at your workplace, please contact us at info@eaa.org.au.
    13. Is Effective Altruism Australia registered on any workplace giving technology platforms?

      Effective Altruism Australia is registered on the following workplace giving platforms: Benevity, Good2Give, and Consiva.
    14. Can I make a bequest to Effective Altruism Australia?

      Yes. You can arrange to make an unrestricted bequest to us by including the following text in your will: “I give to Effective Altruism Australia (ABN 87 608 863 467), for its general purposes free of all duties the sum of $X for which an authorised receipt from Effective Altruism Australia will be sufficient discharge for the executor(s) or trustee.”
  2. Charity Partners

    1. How does EAA know which charities are most effective?

      We conduct our own research, primarily using GiveWell, The Open Philanthropy Project, The Life You Can Save, The Global Priorities Project and academia to enable Australians to support the best projects that we can find.
    2. What does partnership with a charity involve?

      EAA is an organisation which has been set up to fundraise in Australia for the world’s most effective charities. We contact charities that pass an initial selection process and request further information for our due diligence. Charities that pass the subsequent due diligence assessment are designated as partner charities and EAA will fundraise on their behalf in Australia.
    3. Why are there no charities addressing animal welfare or climate change?

      Part of the strength of the Effective Altruist movement is the varied views of its membership, all of which are focused on most effectively improving the world. Some members of the Effective Altruism movement focus on the reduction of suffering of all sentient beings, and to them this includes non-human animals. Further, some believe that reducing the suffering of future humans is equally as important as those presently alive. Because of this, reducing the chance of future harm to humans, known as existential risk, may be the most effective use of our time and money (eg, by reducing the impacts of climate change). Effective Altruism Australia, as an institution, welcomes all of these wonderful perspectives and points of view. However, given the legal framework currently in force in Australia it is only possible for EAA to aim to alleviate suffering among presently living humans. EAA was created for this purpose, and without legislative change our purpose will not change as we would lose our status as a tax deductible entity. If you are passionate about animal welfare, climate change, or reduction in existential risk generally, we strongly encourage you to support your chosen cause even without the existence of a tax deductible option in Australia. You can find more information about animal causes at Animal Charity Evaluators and Sentience Politics. A write up on climate change by Giving What We Can can be found here. And a write up on existential risk can be found here.
    4. Why are there no charities addressing Australian issues such as homelessness, Aboriginal issues etc?

      Most importantly, we believe that all lives are equal, no matter where you live. This philosophy means that we look for the most effective charities all over the world. Whilst these charities could operate within Australia, EA does not currently focus on Australia because at the present time charity evaluators and research suggest that the most cost-effective way of alleviating poverty is to assist those living in the developing world. If you want to understand more about why it is so much more cost-effective to help people in poorer countries then please visit GiveWell, The Open Philanthropy Project, The Life You Can Save, The Global Priorities Project.
    5. How can my charity partner with EAA?

      Please express your interest to info@eaa.org.au with supporting documentation that discusses how your organisation meets our evaluation criteria, summarised below: Estimated impact per dollar: The quantitative impact of each dollar donated. For example, this could be in terms of lives saved or quality adjusted life years (QALYS) added. Estimated intervention effectiveness: The certainty with which your interventions can be linked to positive outcomes. To ensure that all charities we support are reliably linked with creating positive social outcomes we focus on those which have been repeatedly studied, and have a demonstrated track record. Estimated level of transparency: Access to your data and internal operations so that this data can be evaluated for effectiveness. To ensure certainty with our evaluation we only work with charities that are willing to maintain high levels of transparency.
  3. Effective Altruism Australia

    1. What is EAA?

      Effective Altruism Australia (EAA) is registered Public Benevolent Institution (PBI) that aims to alleviate poverty, distress and suffering. EAA recognises that we do not have the scale to effectively achieve this focus ourselves, so we choose to partner with charities that share our purpose of alleviating poverty effectively – ie, we have a common purpose. We then fundraise in Australia and grant funds that we raise to these partner charities who use those funds in the programs which we support and they achieve far superior results than if we were to try to alleviate poverty by ourselves. EAA is based on the principles of Effective Altruism which is a philosophy and social movement that applies evidence and reason to help determine the most effective ways to improve the world.
    2. How can I get involved and help EAA?

      Please express your interest by emailing info@eaa.org.au. While we welcome all offers of support we are particularly interested in volunteers with technical skills to assist in developing our website and automating various processes. If you think this may be you, please let us know!
    3. Do you publish financial statements?

      Yes. You can view or download our financial statements here.

Effective Altruism

Where can I learn more about effective altruism?

Effective Altruism is a growing social movement and philosophy that combines both the heart and the head: compassion guided by data and reason. If you are interested in learning more about Effective Altruism then please consider visiting the following resources: whatiseffectivealtruism.com effectivealtruism.org en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effective_altruism

Where can I meet other Australians who are interested in effective altruism?

There are a wide range of different Effective Altruism chapters across Australia with both online and offline presences. Many have regular social gatherings and all welcome new members. If you can’t find one for your area or university and would like to set one up then please contact info@eaa.org.au.

How can I report a bug or send feedback about your website?

Please contact info@eaa.org.au with any feedback or concerns.

How can I ask a question related to the EAG conference?

Please contact info@eaa.org.au.