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YWAM Canberra

Care:  At least some of the information about this charity is no longer current.  Use the ‘Search charity names’ box to see if there is a later review.  If the latest review has a message like this, you are welcome to make your case for an updated review via email to ted@businessbythebook.com.au.


This is a review[1] for those thinking of getting involved with YWAM Canberra, especially as a student or a donor[2].


If this is you, then please pause and consider the following:

  • This is an organisation that has a public invitation to young people[3] to enter financial agreements likely to be life-changing,
    • that is directed by, if their ACNC Register information is correct[4], a Committee of just three people, with two of these being a couple
    • that has a Committee without any outsiders (even from another YWAM)[6]
    • that has a membership (to whom the Committee is accountable) restricted to staff of the organisation.[7]
  • This is an organisation, a registered charity, that collected $438K in the 2019 year, but where the responsible persons continue to show their disdain for their legal responsibilities by[8]
    • not having yet submitted the charity’s annual reporting due six months ago (with that date being a generous six months after the financial year-end)[9]
    • operating without some of the required registrations.[10]
  • This is an organisation that gives no information on what it achieved[11] (outcomes, results, or impact) from all that it does[12], and is doing (using labour funded by donors[13]).
  • This is an organisation that is part of a movement where
    • periodically there are credible reports of abuse of students
    • there is a lack of accountability
      • the external YWAM body that this and many Australian YWAMs constitutions say needs to be involved in some of the important decisions[14], appears not to exist[15]
      • the missions organisation of which it is a member, Missions Interlink[16], although requiring adherence to a set of standards, is historically poor at ensuring compliance.
    • The members resist independent scrutiny of their information.

A draft of this review was sent to the charity. They….did not respond.



  1. See here for the previous review.
  2. Graphical user interface, text Description automatically generated
  3. https://ywamtoowoomba.com/: Text Description automatically generated
  4. At 17 July 2019, this Committee had 11 members, including the current three [Committee’s Report, Financial Report 2018]:Tom HallasDianne and Kevin ClarkJeannette Montgomery

    Mark and Robin Cockburn

    Wati Savu

    Esther Lee

    Jacob Lee

    Steve and Leonie Watts

  5. https://www.ywamcanberra.org/us:Text Description automatically generated
  6. Even if we assume that the Committee still consists of the 11 people who signed the accounts, nine are definitely ‘YWAMers’, while the other two probably either are or were.
  7. Clause 4, the constitution, ACNC Register.
  8. Financial Report 2019, ACNC Register.
  9. The last time they submitted on time was for the 2013 year; last year the Committee submitted over a year late.
  10. An ARBN for operating interstate, and a registered business name for ‘YWAM Canberra’.
  11. Other than some old anecdotal reports under ‘News’.
  12. Our Mission’: Text Description automatically generated
  13. Because it is hard to read in the link, here it is from another YWAM: Text, letter Description automatically generated
  14. For example, clause 13:
  15. The only mention of Australia in a long list of ‘global contacts’ all around the world is ‘Pacific & Asia Field Convenor’.
  16. https://missionsinterlink.org.au/membership/mi-members-and-associates, 5 April 2 Graphical user interface, application Description automatically generated