Gallery: Australia Unites raises $25m

Stars locked lips, networks suspended rivalries and Aussies dug deep for Qld & NSW communities.

Australians donated over $25m to the Australia Unites: Red Cross Flood Appeal last night.

The event included government, corporate and private donations from around the country.

Seven, Nine and 10 combined resources to produce a joint broadcast hosted firstly by Amanda Keller, Natalie Barr and Ben Fordham, and later David Koch, Sylvia Jeffreys and Chris Brown. All three networks donated $250,000 each to kick the night off.

TV talent manned the phone rooms at Red Cross bases in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne and performers either live in studio, or from concert vision, included Tones And I, Delta Goodrem, Jon Stevens, Missy Higgins, Vanessa Amorosi, Kasey Chambers, Gang of Youths, Ruel, Genesis Owusu, Budjerah, Hunters & Collectors, John Williamson, Guy Sebastian, Kate Miller-Heidke, The Living End, Fijian Heroes, Sheppard, Baker Boy, and The Wiggles.

Amongst some of the random telethon moments…

  • Natalie Barr introduced one guest by saying, “Good morning to you.. sorry it’s not morning, is it? I knew that would get me.”
  • After a cross from 10’s Sarah Harris, Ben Fordham noted that “We train them well at Nine.”
  • There was a $5,000 donation for Matty J to wear wife Laura’s dress (he did) and $10,000 to swap underwear (unconfirmed)
  • Al from MAFS repeated his infamous drink from a ‘shooey.’
  • Pub owners Delvene Delaney and David Gyngell donated $100,000 on their last night of owning the Hotel Brunswick. David Gyngell confirmed to Larry Emdur the appeal was his idea, pulled together with a call to Michael Healy at Nine, supported by Seven’s James Warburton and 10’s Beverley McGarvey.
  • Channelling Rove McManus and Bert Newton from the 2005 Australia Unites benefit, Grant Denyer and Ben Fordham pashed live on air for a donation.
  • ITV Studios Australia donated $50,000.

The event, which extended to 12:30am AEDT,  was produced by Logies and Carols by Candlelight veteran Brent Williams and team.

You can donate to at redcross.org.au/floodsappeal or by calling 1800 733 276.


23 Responses

    1. I’m guessing the past criticism and skepticism of how they handled previous donations and funds was why they were insistent this time that 100% of donations from the telethon would go to where its needed most.

  1. A bit late to this, but I streamed it on 10play and the telecast was great, but I got so many betting ads (footy season is back on, no doubt).

    I noticed the Sydney call centre had H&A stars for Seven, but missing in the Melbourne call centre were Neighbours’ stars for Ten – given the shows recent cancellation, probably a bit awkward to have them there; I guess Masterchef can always fill the void.

  2. Not really. This is a personal blog, not affiliated with the charity or channels.

    A google, heck just watching the actual event, could have given the poster the answer they were looking for.

  3. Great galley David.
    My favorite moment was seeing the Hunters & Collectors performance from Adelaide and I got a question,
    When was the last time we have seen Hunters & Collectors on free to air TV?

  4. It should be legislated that whenever there are charity telethons or advertising on the television, radio and other media, that the administration cost percentage should be displayed or mentioned.

    1. How many people really investigate the organisations they give to? Especially in impulsive donations online. The major charities are far more regulated.

  5. Magnificent effort – FTA TV shines as no others can.
    David, any indications of how much of the $25m will actually get to the flood victims and what percentage will be taken as “administration costs” please?

      1. It’s a relevant question. The Government set up the National Charities and Non-profits Commission to regulate such matters. There has been little transparency in Australia with charities paying out up to 70% to outsource generation of donations, and 30% is common. Then there are are overheads and charities like Warne’s which paid family members for little work. $51m donated by a social media influencer for victims of the Bushfires ended up going the fire fighters because of poor design. The Red Cross has had large sums unspent in the past for the Aceh Tsunami and Haitian earthquake appeal. They united by eliminating completion, splitting the production costs and running ads and promos so they probably made a profit. Nine won, Seven came 2nd and Ten as usual a distant 3rd. Note the ABC and SBS didn’t unite. Australian’s pledged another $24.25m but not all of that will be donated, and anyone could have donated via the website for the last few weeks. The performers donated their…

    1. According to Australian Red Cross: “100% of the money raised during the Telethon” will be going to people in Qld and NSW because of generous support from initial funders.

  6. great pictures David.
    I think the three TV networks did a great job at televising 5 hours of coverage non stop. The coverage would be improved if they added TV presenters from Adelaide, perth. That way it will help reunite people around us. There were pre recorded messages from WA premier Mark McGowan, PM scomo, AFL players, The Front Bar, SA premier, Steven marshall.
    What was interesting was Bec Maddern was with Eddie reuniting together. Since Bec parted ways with Nine last Nov, she moved back to 7. Now she’s with Eddie in call rooms. I wish Ch7 Melbourne has other talent like Mick Molloy who could do the telethon instead of Maddern.

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