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Telecom Foundation Reaches $2m Payroll Giving Milestone

19 March 2014

Telecom Foundation Reaches $2 Million Payroll Giving Milestone

The Telecom Foundation is today celebrating a momentous milestone in its payroll giving and matching programme, reaching $2 million dollars donated to schools, charities and community groups, making the programme one of the most significant payroll giving initiatives in New Zealand.

Payroll giving was introduced in New Zealand in 2010 and enables employees to make donations to organisations such as schools and charities through their employer’s payroll system and receive an immediate tax credit of 33% of their donation.

Since July 2011, the Telecom Foundation has been operating a universal payroll giving programme, offering employees the opportunity to donate a portion of their pay to any of the 26,000 IRD Donee status charities and state/state integrated schools in New Zealand. Telecom then matches the donations dollar for dollar (up to $1,000 for schools and $1,000 for charities). Since the programme launched, 35% of the Telecom workforce have participated in payroll giving.

The programme has been hugely successful and Sir Bob Harvey, Chair of the Telecom Foundation, says he is extremely proud of the way Telecom people have embraced the programme:

“I’ve always known our payroll giving programme was popular with Telecom people, I am absolutely over the moon to have reached the $2 million dollar milestone”.

“We strongly believe that the success of our payroll giving programme comes down to it being universal, we don’t want to tell our people who or what they should give to, it’s nice that they can choose from such a broad range of charities and schools to donate to” says Sir Bob. “Our big ambition is to be able to share what we’ve learnt about running a successful programme as well as the database we’ve built up with other like-minded New Zealand businesses.”

Telecom parents can pay their school donations through the programme and employees can support their favourite charities with one off or ongoing donations. Over the last few years, donations have been made to regional SPCA’s, children’s charities such as Child Cancer Foundation, Cholmondeley and KidsCan along with hundreds of school donations paid. These are just a few examples of how Telecom people have made the most of this great programme.

Telecom’s Anna Loughnan regularly donates through payroll giving and is a supporter of the programme:

“I signed up for payroll giving as soon as it was offered by Telecom. It seemed a convenient way of paying the hefty school ‘donation’ to my daughter’s school, as well as donating to my favourite charity, Oxfam. The added sweetener was the matching of donations up to $1000 by Telecom!” says Anna.

Hon Todd McClay MP, Revenue Minister, encourages businesses across New Zealand to think about payroll giving:

“I encourage all businesses to consider providing payroll giving to their employees as the more we can do to support the charitable and community sectors the more they can do to help those in need.”

“Since it was introduced by the National-led Government in January 2010 payroll giving has seen around $15 million donated to charities, schools and community organisations by generous New Zealanders. For people looking for a low-cost, simple and effective means of charitable giving there is plenty of choice available through payroll giving” says Minister McClay.

ENDS

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