Crime Stoppers SA launches crowdfunding campaign

Crime Stoppers SA launches crowdfunding campaign


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Help sought: Crime Stoppers SA chair Sharon Hanlon said fighting rural crime remained a priority for the organisation, which has launched a GoFundMe campaign.

Help sought: Crime Stoppers SA chair Sharon Hanlon said fighting rural crime remained a priority for the organisation, which has launched a GoFundMe campaign.

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A GoFundMe campaign has been launched by not-for-profit charity Crime Stoppers SA to raise $150,000 to lower country crime and improve the organisation's financial sustainability.

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A GoFundMe campaign has been launched by not-for-profit charity Crime Stoppers SA to raise $150,000 to lower country crime and improve the organisation's financial sustainability.

Crime Stoppers SA chair Sharon Hanlon said a steadily eroding financial position meant the organisation had pulled back on tackling regional crime.

"We haven't been out there delivering rural campaigns, particularly targeting stock theft or farmhouse burglaries, and yet we know that there are many areas that are impacted by these crimes," she said.

The SA division is the only branch across the nation that has never received government funding, instead relying on corporate partnerships - including a long-running relationship with Bank SA that wound up in 2012.

Ms Hanlon said operating without government support was hurting the organisation, which has explored alternative financial options in the past six years but has not secured any permanent support.

"It pains me to see Crime Stoppers programs interstate being able to roll out significant campaigns we just don't have sufficient funds to be able do," she said.

In the public eye we are almost wedded to the police because we work together closely. - SHARON HANLON

Ms Hanlon said the GoFundMe campaign aimed to increase community engagement, education and awareness in rural areas.

"In the past we've had a focus on livestock theft and theft of seedstock, at this stage (exactly what we do with the funds) depends on what funds come in," she said.

The campaign had so far acted as an "eye-opener" for the public, according to Ms Hanlon. 

"In the public eye we are almost wedded to the police because we work together closely," she said.

"People wrongly assume that we're part of the police or a government agency already."

Prior to last year's state election, Crime Stoppers SA presented both major political parties and many independents with a formal submission requesting funding.

"A lot of blood, sweat and tears got us to that point, to present our position - this was not something that was dreamt up overnight," she said.

"We received a commitment from the (then-)Labor government for $240,000 per year for the next four years, however the intentions were not returned to office when the Marshall government were elected."

"We are in dialogue with the current state government who tell us they value our service, we're just wanting them to demonstrate that and make a financial contribution to our operation."

Police Minister Corey Wingard said assisting Crime Stoppers SA was on the agenda of the Liberal party.

"We will work with Crime Stoppers SA as they seek to find a sustainable business model," he said.

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