About TEAR

TEAR Australia is a movement of Christians in Australia responding to the needs of poor communities around the world. Our motivation comes from our belief that God loves all people, and in Christ offers them the opportunity of a new life. We believe that God is just, and has particular care for the poor and those who suffer as victims of injustice.

We work in partnership with other Christian groups, including churches, relief and development agencies and community-based organisations, which are working with the poor in their communities. We seek to build effective relationships with these partners, grounded in mutual respect, trust and accountability.

Priority is given to those programs that strive to involve the most marginalised and exploited members of each community, regardless of their religious or political beliefs.

In Australia, we work to inform and empower Christians, in partnership with local churches, to make a biblically-shaped response to suffering and oppressed communities.

About TEAR

Contact Us

TEAR Australia
A Company Limited by Guarantee

ABN: 85 085 413 832
ARBN: 085 413 832
IRN: A0036369M

National office contact details

Address: 4 Solwood Lane, Blackburn, VIC, 3130, Australia
Post: PO Box 164, Blackburn, VIC, 3130, Australia
Phone: 03 9264 7000 or 1800 244 986 (Free call)
Fax: 03 9877 7944
Email: info@tear.org.au

ACT contact details

Phone: 02 9212 4499
Email: act@tear.org.au

NSW contact details

Address: Suite 413 / 410 Elizabeth Street, Surry Hills, NSW 2010
Phone: 02 9212 4499
Email: nsw@tear.org.au

NT contact details

Phone: 03 9264 7000 or 1800 244 986 (Free call)
Email: info@tear.org.au

QLD contact details

Postal address: PO BOX 368 Fortitude Valley QLD 4006
Email: qld@tear.org.au
Phone: 07 3077 7413

SA contact details

Address: The Joinery, 111 Franklin St, Adelaide, SA
Phone: 08 7078 2104
Email: sa@tear.org.au

TAS contact details

Phone: 03 9264 7000 or 1800 244 986 (Free call)
Fax: 03 9877 7944
Email: tas@tear.org.au

VIC contact details

Address: 1/4 Solwood Lane, Blackburn, VIC
Phone: 03 9264 7000 or 1800 244 986 (Free call)
Fax: 03 9877 7944
Email: vic@tear.org.au

WA contact details

Address: 315 Bagot Rd, Subiaco WA, 6008. Postal address: PO Box 87, Subiaco WA, 6904
Phone: 08 6262 2823
Email: wa@tear.org.au

Positions Vacant

Our vision at TEAR is for a just and compassionate world in which all people have the opportunity to achieve their God-given potential. We long for a world in which everyone has enough and no-one has too much.

Our staff are people who share this vision and aim to live it out in all of their lives. We aspire to a culture that values relationship, grace, honesty, the whole person, equality and learning. Working at TEAR is not just a job, it’s a way of life. It is about joining together with our implementing partners overseas and through our Indigenous programs and supporting Christians in Australia on a journey towards justice for the poor.

What is it like to work at TEAR?

TEAR Speakers

TEAR staff are available to speak at your church or small group. TEAR speakers speak from a Bible based perspective, and personal experience of issues affecting the lives of our poorer neighbours.

Whether you're organising a conference, looking for a speaker for a youth event, or would just like to expand your roster of speakers, TEAR's education staff are happy to work with you to create a presentation that suits your needs, while inspiring and challenging your audience.

View TEAR speakers or contact your local TEAR office to arrange a TEAR speaker.

Mission Statement

The purposes for which TEAR Australia has been established, are summed up in its Mission Statement:

TEAR Australia is a Christian development, relief and advocacy organisation responding to global poverty and injustice.

Our vision is for a just and compassionate world in which all people have the opportunity to achieve their God-given potential.

We will:

  • inform, challenge and empower Australian Christians to make biblically-shaped responses to poverty and injustice.
  • support community-based Christian groups, churches and mission organisations around the world as they work holistically with poor communities in development, relief and advocacy.
  • adhere to biblical teaching, and evaluate our work and attitudes in its light.
  • maintain a low-cost administration regime in order to maximize the funds allocated to project partners.
Mission Statement

TEAR supporters Sunshine and Nathan March, TEAR stall at WomAdelaide international music festival.


As a faith-based Christian organization we seek to adhere to biblical teaching, evaluating our work and attitudes in its light. Consequently we aspire to the following values.

A commitment to the poor

All people, being made in the image of God, are of equal value and worth. Therefore, we are committed to working with poor people and communities, supporting them as they strive to meet their basic needs, overcome injustice and fulfil their God-given potential. In so doing we are committed to fully acknowledging the integrity, worth and initiative of those who are oppressed by poverty in all our educational and fundraising activities.

A commitment to the whole person

We are committed to work with people in the context of family, community and environment, with concern for their spiritual, physical, mental, social and emotional well-being.


Fabric merchants create a colourful street scene in Nepal.

A commitment to justice

We are committed to live justly, according to biblical principles. We recognise this has radical implications for the way we manage resources, and requires our willingness to speak and act on behalf of the powerless and marginalized.

A commitment to prayer

Recognising our dependence upon God, we acknowledge the need to be earnest in prayer, not only regarding our work but also that of our partners.

A commitment to relationships

We are committed to partnership based on good relationships with our partners, supporters and colleagues, showing humility and integrity in our dealings with others.

A commitment to participation

We are committed to making it possible for supporters, volunteers, staff and members to fully and effectively participate in and shape key aspects of our work.

A commitment to excellence

We are committed to work with partners, supporters, co-workers and volunteers in a professional manner. We will strive for excellence, encouraging creativity and innovation.

A commitment to learn from others

We are committed to learning from others in humility, and will seek to respond well to constructive criticism, and the changing needs of those we serve.

A commitment to collaboration

We are committed to working with other organisations in a spirit of collaboration rather than competition, locally, nationally and internationally.

A commitment to accountability

We are accountable to God for our use of time and resources. We are accountable to our partners, members and supporters, striving to be honest, trustworthy and transparent. We are committed to making what we do consistent with what we say.

Basis of Belief

TEAR has taken the Micah Network Statement of Belief as our Basis of Belief

As a network of Christian organisations committed to making a Biblical response to the needs of the poor throughout the world, we accept and proclaim the historic truths of the Christian faith including the following:

Basis of Belief

We hold that the Lord our God is one:
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
and that he fulfils his sovereign purposes
- in creation, revelation, redemption, judgement,
and the coming of his kingdom -
by calling out from the world a people
united to himself and to each other in love.

We acknowledge that though God made us
in his own likeness and image,
conferring on us dignity and worth
and enabling us to respond to himself,
we now are members of a fallen race;
we have sinned and come short of his glory.

We believe that the Father
has shown us his holy love
in giving Jesus Christ, his only Son, for us,
while through our sinfulness and guilt,
we were subject to his wrath and condemnation;
and has shown his grace
by putting sinners right with himself
when they place their trust in his Son.

We confess Jesus Christ as Lord and God;
as truly human, born of the virgin Mary;
as Servant, sinless, full of grace and truth;
as only Mediator and Saviour,
dying on the cross in our place, representing us to God,
redeeming us from the grip,
guilt and punishment of sin;
as Victor over Satan and all his forces,
rising from death with a glorious body,
being taken up to be with his Father,
one day returning personally in glory and judgement
to establish his kingdom.

We believe in the Holy Spirit
who convicts the world of guilt in regard to sin,
righteousness and judgement;
who makes the death of Christ effective to sinners,
declaring that they must now turn to Christ in repentance,
and directing their trust towards the Lord Jesus Christ;
who through the new birth makes us partake in the life of the risen Christ, and
who is present within all believers,
illuminating their minds to grasp the truth of Scripture,
producing in them his fruit,
granting to them his gifts,
and empowering them for service in the world.

We believe that the Old and New Testament Scriptures
are God-breathed, since their writers spoke from God
as they were moved by the Holy Spirit; hence
are fully trustworthy in all that they affirm; and
are our highest authority for faith and life.

We recognise the Church
as the body of Christ, held together and growing up in him; both
as a total fellowship throughout the world, and
as the local congregation in which believers gather

We acknowledge the commission of Christ
to proclaim the Good News to all people,
making them disciples, and
teaching them to obey him, and

We acknowledge the command of Christ
to love our neighbours,
resulting in service to the church and society,
in seeking reconciliation for all with God and their fellows,
in proclaiming liberty from every kind of oppression; and
in spreading Christ's justice in an unjust world

... until he comes again.


TEAR Australia: living and giving for God's work of justice and compassion.

For more than 40 years, TEAR Australia has been enabling communities around the world to use their own skills and resources to overcome poverty and marginalisation. Our values are lived out through a mission across two primary sectors of work:

  • Supporting local Christian organisations as they work holistically with poor communities in development, relief and advocacy.
  • Empowering Australian Christians to make biblically-shaped responses to poverty and injustice.

Our History

TEAR Australia was originally formed as an arm of the Australian Evangelical Alliance after its then President, Dr. Leon Morris, was inspired to establish a dedicated emergency relief fund. At an AEA Board meeting in July 1971, Dr Morris laid $10 from his own pocket on the Boardroom table, and so The Evangelical Alliance Relief Fund was born. Its original purpose was: “To meet two human needs: one for spiritual direction and assurance, the other for physical help—food, medicine, shelter and clothing… Practical aid in the context of God's love shown in the Lord Jesus.”


Under the AEA, TEAR grew fast. By 1977, the first staff members were appointed, and by 1979, an independent Board was formed. In 1998, and with the blessing of its founding body, TEAR Australia was incorporated as a legally independent agency. We no longer use the original acronym, but rather carry the byline “Transformation, Empowerment, Advocacy, Relief”.

Our Motivation

“TEAR Australia is motivated by its understanding of God, the words and actions of Jesus, and the mission that He passed on to the Church. We believe that God loves all people and offers them new life in Christ. The Bible shows us the values and characteristics of the Kingdom of God. The world falls far short of these standards. We believe that God seeks to involve us in the work of the Kingdom. This involves working for justice and hope with and alongside people living with poverty, and advocating for just social and political structures that promote the dignity and security of all people. We are aware of the interconnectedness of human society with the whole of creation and acknowledge our responsibility to respect and care for it.” (Matthew Maury, National Director)

Our People

Then, as now, TEAR was formed primarily of voluntary workers. As Tony McCarthy, Chair of the TEAR Board from 1979—2004 writes: “TEAR is, and has always been, a peoples' organisation. It is a community of disciples committed to being practical in expressing their faith; passionate about their discipleship in seeking to express God's love and concern for the poor; and rigorous in exploring the scriptures to learn and to inform both belief and practice. It is an inclusive organisation.”

Surrounding the paid staff positions and voluntary Board members is a vast network of Christians in Australia who contribute to the spiritual, directional, financial and educational work. Some of the more formal volunteer roles include TEAR Members, the International Projects Allocations Committee, which reviews international projects, TEAR Reps, TEAR Group members, and office volunteers. There are also the less formal roles of dedicated supporters who pray for TEAR's work, advocate publicly for structural change, give to TEAR's work, learn and teach others about God's work of justice and compassion, and choose to live according to principles of simple lifestyle.

International Programs

Under a guiding principle to support local Christian responses to poverty, the first project supported was in partnership with the Evangelical Fellowship of India Committee on Relief (EFICOR), responding to the needs of refugees from East Pakistan. Our partnership with EFICOR continues to this day, as does the approach to work through local partners rather than establish projects of our own.

Through TEAR's international partners, projects are supported which enable opportunities for people living with poverty to engage in processes to change their lives and their circumstances. Projects give priority to the rights, interests, needs and capacities of the poorest and most marginalised people and seek to address both the symptoms and the causes of poverty.

Commonly, the projects supported through our partners address a combination of issues faced within a community, including basic health and education, income generation, food security, environmental sustainability, strengthening civil society, women's empowerment, water and sanitation, and disaster relief and recovery. At the heart of the activities, there is always a community working together to address their own needs, supported to do so through the resources of a faithful Christian group committed to enabling them to live their lives to the fullest.


In Australia, TEAR is committed to working with our partners to improve the impact and effectiveness of the work we do together. One of the ways we achieve this is through fieldworkers—skilled Australians who work with our partners, typically for three to five years, to train and mentor local staff. Since the first fieldworkers began in 1987, TEAR Australia has sent more than sixty fieldworkers from professional backgrounds in education, health, management, engineering and communications.

Indigenous Programs in Australia

One of TEAR Australia's earliest projects was supporting Aboriginal people in the Lake Tyers district of Victoria in 1978. In 2007, a dedicated Indigenous Support Program was launched. “Dhumba”, as it is now known, works to strengthen Indigenous Christian partners as they strive to advocate for their rights, and engage with community development activities. Dhumba also encourages all Australians to engage with the issues faced by our Indigenous brothers and sisters and advocate with them to create a fairer Australia.

Australian Programs

Sitting firmly alongside TEAR's international program has been a focus on engagement with Christians in Australia—encouraging, challenging, teaching, networking and resourcing to make biblically-shaped responses to poverty and injustice. This dual focus, in which it is recognized that poverty cannot be overcome unless we also make changes to our lives, and in which Australians are empowered to act at the local level to affect international change, is embedded in TEAR Australia's mission. Target magazine, first published in 1975, and distributed free to supporters, has been devoted to biblically-shaped material reflecting on God's work with our international partners and with Christians in Australia.

The first full-time staff member, appointed in 1979, was dedicated to education in Australia. Since then, TEAR staff and volunteers around the country have worked directly with individuals and churches, providing opportunities to engage. Conferences, one of the earliest titled “Living Simply is Simply Not Enough” in 1979, have enabled Christians to discuss issues relating to Australian lifestyles, on the poor locally and globally, and to biblically and prayerfully reflect on ways to respond. Similiarly, TEAR offers opportunities for supporters to visit our international and Indigenous Australian projects. The first of these exposure and learning events was in 1989, and since then hundreds of Australians have been able to visit TEAR-supported projects.


A strong commitment to advocating for just social and political structures has motivated TEAR Australia to both speak out individually, and through coalitions, on issues of injustice. Over the past two decades, TEAR Australia has acted as founding body and, at times, the lead agency for: the Jubilee 2000 Australian campaign, The Water Matters campaign, Voices for Justice, Make Poverty History and the Micah Challenge.


The vast majority of TEAR Australia's income comes from individuals, churches and Christian groups across the country. Some of this is through our major fundraising initiatives, including The World's Most Useful Gift Catalogue and through appeals for disaster relief and recovery or special events such as the End of Financial Year Appeal. Full accreditation with The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) which manages the Australian Government's overseas aid program, also enables TEAR Australia to access government grants to support our partners' work.

TEAR’s Five Responses

TEAR seeks to encourage and empower the Christian community to make authentic responses to the biblical call for justice.

Our five holistic responses:


Hear the voices of the poor and marginalised, and grow in your understanding of God’s Kingdom vision and the work of TEAR’s partners.

TEAR’s Five Responses


Take practical steps to live well through everyday justice choices.

TEAR’s Five Responses


Seek release for those made captive by oppressive systems and restoration for people and places broken by greed and injustice.

TEAR’s Five Responses


Pray like Jesus that “God's Kingdom come”. Seek to see the world through God's eyes and join with others to bring about real change.

TEAR’s Five Responses


Partner with TEAR by giving financially to support the mission of building a just and compassionate world so that all can have “fullness of life”.

TEAR’s Five Responses

Reconciliation Action Plan

We invite you to read the TEAR Australia Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) for 2017-2020.

During 2016-2017 TEAR developed a new Stretch RAP, which has been endorsed by Reconciliation Australia. This new RAP is TEAR’s framework for realizing our vision for reconciliation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in 2017-2020.

As with TEAR’s previous RAPs, our RAP for 2017-2020 is based on the three pillars of Respect, Relationships and Opportunities. TEAR is committed to working in a respectful way with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, organisations and communities. TEAR aims to facilitate and support the raising of awareness, understanding and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait cultures and peoples amongst our supporter base. TEAR aims to equip and mobilise Australian Christians and the wider Australian community to work towards a more just and equitable Australian society.  Internally, TEAR aims to create an inclusive workplace where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and cultures are understood, respected and valued.

Although TEAR has been on a reconciliation journey for some years now, we recognize we still have some way to go. We encourage you to read our current RAP and see what we aim to achieve in 2017-2020. You may also want to consider developing a RAP for the organization you work with.

Reconciliation Action Plan

Annual Report and Financial Statements

TEAR's Annual Reports and Financial Statements, documenting the values of TEAR, the activities for the past year, the financial reports and the staff of TEAR.

View all reports and financial statements

TEAR Board

Board Members are elected, by rotation and for 4-year terms, at the Annual General Meeting of TEAR Australia. The Board meets five times per year. The Board adheres to various governance standards, such as those recommended by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission.

Responsibilities of the Board of TEAR Australia include:

  • input into and final approval of the vision, mission, purposes and strategic direction of TEAR;
  • oversight of TEAR, including its control and accountability systems;
  • reviewing and approving systems of risk management and internal compliance and control, codes of conduct and legal compliance;
  • monitoring senior management’s performance and implementation strategy;
  • ensuring appropriate resources are available to TEAR;
  • applying and monitoring the progress of major capital expenditure and capital management; and
  • approving and monitoring financial and other reporting. 

Joanna Betteridge


Appointed:  2010 (Consultative Member in 2009)

Responsibilities: Board Chair; Governance Committee Member

Joanna Betteridge, Principal of Betteridge Legal Consulting, is a lawyer practising in employment and safety law.  She has significant board governance experience in a range of sectors including health, welfare, broadcasting and not-for-profit. Joanna is also a Senior Fellow and Lecturer for Monash University in its Law Faculty post graduate program. 

TEAR Board

Peter Noble

BA LLB (UQ), MIntl &  Community Dev (DU)

Appointed: November 2014

Responsibilities: Board Deputy Chair; Membership Committee Chair, Assurance Committee Member

Peter is the Executive Director, Services and Innovation, at Victoria Legal Aid (Bendigo). VLA is a government-funded agency, established to provide free legal information for all Victorians and to ensure that people who cannot afford to pay for a private lawyer can get help with their legal problems. Peter studied politics and law at the University of Queensland and practiced at the Brisbane firm Delaney & Delaney Solicitors before moving to Victoria, where he worked for 3 years at the Fitzroy Legal Service. In 2005 he relocated to Bendigo, establishing the Loddon Campaspe Community Legal Centre as its foundation coordinator and principal lawyer. In 2008 he was awarded the Law Institute of Victoria Community Lawyer of the Year Award and received a Clayton Utz Fellowship in 2012 to study Medical-Legal Partnerships in the United States.

TEAR Board

Barbara Deutschmann

BA, DipEd, MTh

Appointed: November 2016

Responsibilities: Governance Committee Member

Number of meetings attended:

Barbara has a background as a teacher in Australia and a health program trainer in India. She formerly worked with TEAR Australia, coordinating the fieldworker program and later the Indigenous support program. She enjoys reading in the area of public theology with a special interest in the issues relating to reconciliation and gender equality and helped to found the Melbourne chapter of Christians for Biblical Equality. She is currently doing a PhD looking at gender relationships in the book of Genesis. She worships with the Anglican parish of St Mark’s in Spotswood.

TEAR Board

Brett Gresham 

B.Eng (Civ), M.Lit. Dev Stud.

Appointed:  2010

Responsibilities: Program Committee Chair

Brett currently manages The Australian Volunteers for International Development program (funded by DFAT) as well as being owner and director of a small business. A civil engineer, he has extensive experience working internationally in development and project management. Brett and his wife Ruth worked in Afghanistan with one of TEAR’s partners (1993-1997).

TEAR Board

Matthew Maury (National Director)

BA (Hons), MBA (Dev Studies), GAICD

Appointed:  2009

Responsibilities: Board Secretary; Governance Committee Member; Assurance Committee Member; Membership Committee Member

Matthew is TEAR Australia’s National Director.  For more than 25 years he has worked in a variety of positions with Christian development agencies, ranging from grassroots community development to senior management.  His experience involves work with poor and marginalised communities in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. Matthew is a member of the ACFID Board, the Campaign for Australian Aid Board, and is the Chair of the Micah Global Board.

TEAR Board

Barry Morris

Dip Tech (Comm); FCA

Appointed: April 2016

Responsibilities: Assurance Committee Chair

Barry is the Chief Financial Officer & Company Secretary of Bible Society Australia having joined them in 2010.  Previous to his role at Bible Society, Barry was the CFO of a publicly listed property company, the Director of Finance & Administration at The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia and State Manager of well-known large international/national law firms.  Barry has diverse industry experience which includes manufacturing, hospitality, property, professional services and not-for-profit sectors.  As a Chartered Accountant, he began his career in external audit with one of the Big4 accounting firms. In 1998, Barry became a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants.

TEAR Board

Peter Snowsill

BE (Hons), MAICD

Appointed: Nov 2015

Responsibilities: Membership Committee Member; Program Committee Member

Peter is a Chemical Engineer with governance, management and project expertise in industrial water treatment and international aid.  He is a director and co-owner of a water treatment chemical manufacturing and distribution business, and is currently engaged in commercial and community renewable energy projects.   He has lived and worked in Australia, Asia and North America.

TEAR Board

Joanna Watts

BA (Hons), PG Cert (Higher Education Administration)

Appointed: Nov 2015

Responsibilities: Governance Committee Chair

Joanna is Associate Director of Services and Support in the Alumni and Advancement Office at La Trobe University and is the Chair of the University’s Fair Trade Steering Committee.  She has worked in higher education for 23 years both in the UK and Australia and her current focus is supporting the development of fundraising and alumni engagement programs for La Trobe. She been involved with TEAR since 2005, through the Diamond Valley TEAR group.  She has been the convenor of this group since 2009.

TEAR Board

Lauren Bonnet


Appointed: November 2015

Responsibilities: Associate Board Member; Program Committee Member

Lauren has completed a Bachelor of Development Studies at the University of Adelaide, and is currently studying a Masters in Social Work. She has been a part of the South Australian TEAR community for a number of years, and participated in InDEEP in 2014. She is working as the Young Adults Consultant SA/NT for Global Interaction, and as a Community Development Officer in her community amongst diverse groups.  

TEAR Board

Departed during FY 2016-17:

Mikaela Belling


Appointed: February 2015

Last meeting: March 2017

Responsibilities: Associate Board Member; Governance Committee Member; Program Committee Member

Mikaela recently completed a Masters of Human Rights Law and Policy at the University of New South Wales. She is now working as a Case Manager at Navitas English to assist newly arrived refugees settling on the NSW South Coast. She began her connection with TEAR in 2013 through an internship at the Sydney office and has since been involved in the TEAR community in Sydney. 

TEAR Board

Jane Furniss

BA, LLB (Hons), M. Int Devt

Appointed: November 2013

Last meeting: November 2016

Responsibilities: Program Committee Member

Jane has a background in international law, development and governance. She started her career in corporate law for a major Australian law firm and has worked as a lawyer in Australia and Asia for over ten years. Jane has worked closely with several of TEAR’s partner agencies through her previous roles as International Director of the Micah Network, a director of Micah Challenge International and a director of United Mission to Nepal. Jane currently works as a lawyer on international development projects and in a family business focusing on education.  

TEAR Board

Working at TEAR

Positions vacant

Why work for TEAR?

Our vision at TEAR is for a just and compassionate world in which all people have the opportunity to achieve their God-given potential. We long for a world in which everyone has enough and no-one has too much.

Our staff are people who share this vision and aim to live it out in all of their lives. We aspire to a culture that values relationship, grace, honesty, the whole person, equality and learning. Working at TEAR is not just a job, it’s a way of life. It is about joining together with our implementing partners overseas and through our Indigenous programs and supporting Christians in Australia on a journey towards justice for the poor.

Working at TEAR

Culture and Diversity

TEAR Australia seeks to be a diverse workplace, in which people of different backgrounds, genders and ages work together. We are committed to be an equal opportunity workplace and aspire to create an inclusive workplace. Please see TEAR's Gender Policy and Equal Opportunity Policy.

Valuing our team

People are drawn to work for TEAR by our mission, values, God’s call and the desire to make a difference. One of TEAR Australia's objectives is to maintain a low-cost administration structure so as to maximise the funds allocated to project partners. We aspire to provide rewarding work, flexible working conditions, opportunities to learn and grow, care for the whole person, space for spiritual nurture, fair pay rates and a supportive environment.

TEAR values collaboration and hearing from others. Approximately every two years we consult with our staff through the use of a staff survey. The results of this survey are shared with staff and staff representatives work together to provide recommendations on how TEAR can learn from and act on the results.

Please also see TEAR's Learning and Development Policy and Work Health and Safety Policy.

What we look for

We look for people who are passionate, faithful, good at what they do, love big challenges and welcome creativity. TEAR is distinctively different and we particularly look for people who are living out God’s call through their whole of life practices such as prayer, advocacy, giving, learning and lifestyle choices.

Safeguarding Children

TEAR Australia’s recruitment and selection procedures and checks reflect our commitment to the well-being and protection of children. Please see our Safeguarding Children Policy (below) for more information.

TEAR Members

An Invitation to Membership

Membership offers those with a history of TEAR involvement a way to serve and safeguard the mission, vision and values of TEAR. At the 2011 AGM the TEAR Board announced it would like to increase the number of active Members starting in 2012.

TEAR Membership

We hope all TEAR supporters see themselves as part of the TEAR movement for a more just and compassionate world. But legal members of TEAR as a company limited by guarantee have a particular governance role. Members serve five year terms which are renewable. Please prayerfully consider if you are interested in becoming a member.

TEAR Members

TEAR Membership

Please prayerfully consider if you are interested in becoming a member. You can contact Karen Quast at membership@tear.org.au or call 03 9264 7000 for more information.

What kinds of things do members do?

Members safeguard the mission, vision and values of TEAR by holding the Board accountable to TEAR’s constitution and ensuring that appropriate people are elected to TEAR’s Board of Directors.

Members are expected to actively participate in the AGM, held each November and vote on proposals brought to this meeting. Members consider relevant financial, legal and governance information to make informed decisions on important TEAR business, including Board elections and constitutional changes.

But I thought I was already a member?!

You may not be. Unless you have formally applied to the TEAR Board and been accepted you are not a legal member of TEAR. If you are a current member of TEAR you will receive election ballots for TEAR's AGM and other correspondence throughout the year relating to TEAR's governance.

I want to apply. What’s the next step?

Please prayerfully consider if you are interested in becoming a member. You can contact Karen Quast at membership@tear.org.au or call 03 9264 7000 for more information. After a short phone conversation, a membership pack will be sent out to you and the application process can start.

The Membership Committee review all applications and make an assessment based on people’s commitment to the Mission of TEAR. Commitment is demonstrated by an active Christian faith and by participating in biblically shaped responses to global poverty and injustice, including through pathways provided by TEAR Australia. In particular, members are expected to join together in the following expressions of commitment:

  • Praying faithfully for TEAR Australia (the communities TEAR partners work with, TEAR partners, volunteers and staff, supporters and supporting churches).
  • Living in ways that promote justice for the poor.
  • Giving consistently to the work of TEAR.
  • Participating in advocacy actions on behalf of the world’s poor.
  • Learning more about the Bible, about justice, about poverty and development.

TEAR publicises avenues for these activities through its publications, website, emails and events. Involvement in a TEAR Group or as a TEAR Representative in a church are examples of important ways in which members actively respond to poverty and injustice.

Successful applicants sign a covenant detailing their commitment to fulfil the membership role, particularly through participation in the annual AGM.

Accreditation and Strategic Alliances

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

The Australian Aid program is managed by the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAT). Around three percent of Australian Aid is delivered through the Australian NGO Cooperation Program (ANCP).

The Australian NGO Cooperation Program recognises the unique strengths that non-government organisations (NGOs) like TEAR Australia bring to development activities and both complements and strengthens Australia’s overall aid efforts. NGOs have particular expertise, networks and reach to support the poorest and most vulnerable in communities. Australian NGOs funded through DFAT undergo a rigorous accreditation process which provides DFAT, and the Australian public, with confidence that TEAR is delivering cost effective, practical and direct poverty reduction programs.

TEAR Australia's full accreditation with DFAT was renewed in November 2011 and is valid for 5 years.

DFAT co-funds specific TEAR Australia projects, which can be identified by the Australian Aid logo.

Accreditation and Strategic Alliances

The Australian Aid logo.

Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission

The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) is the independent national regulator of charities. TEAR Australia is a registered charity with the ACNC.

Accreditation and Strategic Alliances

The CMA Standards Council

TEAR Australia is an accredited partner with the CMA Standards Council (CMASC). Accreditation with the CMASC demonstrates that TEAR has successfully met the required 'Principles and Standards' of accountability of our governance, fundraising and financial oversight.

Accreditation and Strategic Alliances

Australian Council for International Development

ACFID is the peak Council for Australian not-for-profit aid and development organisations working to attain a world where gross inequality and extreme poverty are eradicated. TEAR Australia is an ACFID member, and a signatory to ACFID’s Code of Conduct, which commits members to high standards of integrity and accountability.


Integral is an alliance of Christian relief and development agencies responding to emergency situations around the world. Its main focus is on collaborating when disasters do happen, to find opportunities to avoid duplication, and to maximise resources for those communities requiring emergency relief. TEAR Australia’s membership of Integral provides us with opportunities to learn and respond quickly when disasters do occur.

Accreditation and Strategic Alliances

Micah Global

TEAR Australia is a founding member of the Micah Global (formally Micah Network), a global Christian community of organisations and individuals committed to integral mission. TEAR Australia wholeheartedly endorses the Micah Global Statement of Belief.

Micah Australia

Micah Australia (formally Micah Challenge Australia) is a coalition of churches and Christian organisations working to gather, inspire and empower Australian Christians as advocates, to share God’s heart for justice and raise a powerful voice with and for people in poor communities around the world. TEAR was a founding member of Micah Challenge Australia and continues to be a driving force behind Micah Australia.

Campaign for Australian Aid

The Campaign for Australian Aid is a joint initiative of the Make Poverty History and Micah Australia coalitions, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Campaign represents the movement of people, organisations, businesses and communities who believe we can and should do more as a nation to end extreme poverty around the world. TEAR Australia is a founding member of both the Make Poverty History and Micah Australia (formally Micah Challenge Australia) coalitions and is a driving force behind the Campaign for Australian Aid.

Missions Interlink

Missions Interlink is the Australian network for global mission. Missions Interlink operates across Australia providing training and networking opportunities, sharing information and resources, facilitating collaboration and high standards of practice, and advocating on behalf of our Members and Associates.

Accreditation and Strategic Alliances

Frequently Asked Questions

What does “TEAR” stand for?

Established in 1971 by the Australian Evangelical Alliance, TEAR Australia was originally called The Evangelical Alliance Relief Fund. As we are now an independent organisation, the letters are no longer used as an acronym. Now in our 40th year, we use the byline “Transformation Empowerment Advocacy Relief” as a description of our work.

Does TEAR fund evangelism?

No. TEAR's policy is to finance the relief, development and advocacy activities of organisations who are motivated by their faith in Christ, and by their desire to demonstrate the depth of God's commitment to justice, to mercy, to the poor. We do not fund proselytizing activities, but we rejoice and celebrate when we know of people whose lives have been wonderfully and beautifully enriched by the embrace of God in Christ. But we will not support any attempt to misuse relief and development activities to manipulate people into the church. We believe such attempts lack integrity, result in poor development, and dishonour the One who is our motivation.

How much of my donation reaches the project?

Of TEAR Australia's overall expenses in the last audited financial year, 80% went to projects including support costs, 9% was spent on empowering people within Australia to respond to poverty and injustice, 7% covered administrative costs, and 4% was spent on fundraising. View our annual reports and financial statements. View our annual reports and financial statements.

How do I know the money gets there?

All projects are audited by independent local auditors and are regularly reviewed by TEAR project workers and finance staff. TEAR is also audited by Saward Dawson registered company auditors and is fully accredited by The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) which manages the Australian Government's overseas aid program. TEAR is a signatory to the ACFID (Australian Council for International Development) Code of Conduct, representing our commitment to ethical standards in governance, financial management and public accountability.

How is a project designed?

Project design and management is a joint activity of TEAR Australia and respective implementing partners. TEAR Australia also contributes to the project design process through a sharing of information and experience. Partner organisations work closely with communities to ensure that projects are built on the strengths of the people involved and help them meet their own needs.

How is a project selected?

Projects are selected on the basis of the following strategic objectives. They should:

  • focus on the poorest and most marginalised people;
  • give priority to the rights, interests, needs and capacities of the people they serve;
  • address both the symptoms and the causes of poverty and marginalisation;
  • produce tangible, lasting improvement in the lives of the people they serve;
  • strengthen skills within communities, civil society and government to address their own development priorities.

For more information, please see the 'Guidelines for Development and Relief Assistance'.

How are projects evaluated?

An evaluation process is built into the initial design of every project, and is regularly conducted during implementation of the program. Regular reflections and evaluation by the community and local staff members, technical evaluation by experts, and the observations of TEAR staff are used to keep the project on the path to achieving its goals. As projects reach their completion, or reach a new stage, often an external consultant is employed to facilitate the reflection and learning process.

The objectives of evaluations cover some or all of the following criteria:   

  • Impact
  • Effectiveness
  • Sustainability 
  • Relevance and 
  • Efficiency

Privacy Policy

TEAR Australia (TEAR) is committed to ensuring the privacy of the information provided to it. TEAR is subject to the Australian Privacy Principles (APP, established under the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Privacy Protection) Act 2012) and it is a requirement of the APP that supporters be informed about this process and how TEAR may use the information they provide.

Supporters can obtain further general information about their privacy rights and privacy law from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner by:

Writing to:

The Australian Information Commissioner
GPO Box 5218
Sydney NSW 1042

Holding of Personal Information

Only personal details that are relevant to the work of TEAR are collected and stored. Personal information may be collected when supporters:

  • Complete a TEAR generated form
  • Access the TEAR website
  • Telephone TEAR
  • Email TEAR
  • Provide information to an official TEAR Representative.

TEAR, via its website, published material or other channels, often refers to information published by other organisations or individuals—however, TEAR makes no representation about the adherence of third parties to the APP.

TEAR websites may use cookie and tracking technology depending on the features offered. Cookies and tracking technology are useful for gathering information such as browser type and operating system, tracking the number of visitors to the site, and understanding how visitors use the site. Cookies can also help customize the site for visitors. Personal information is not collected by cookies or other tracking technology. However, if a supporter previously provided personally identifiable information, cookies may be tied to such information. A viewer can control how cookies are used, and for what, through the settings on their chosen browser.

The personal information TEAR collects may include a supporter’s name, address, telephone number, email address, bank account or credit card details and their TEAR supporter reference number. On some occasions, TEAR may ask for a supporter’s date of birth. This may be used to identify the supporter should they need to contact TEAR about their personal information.

Information collected is used solely for TEAR’s charitable, aid and related activities. This includes processing donations, issuing receipts and other TEAR material, contact management for TEAR staff and representatives, and analysis to improve TEAR’s supporter engagement. From time to time TEAR may send supporters updates and information. Supporters may contact TEAR if they do not wish to receive them. Supporters may choose to donate or receive general information anonymously or under a pseudonym; however, TEAR is required to collect and store a minimum level of information in order to issue a tax-deductible receipt/statement.

TEAR ensures all reasonable steps are taken to protect the personal information it holds from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure. Supporters’ personally identifiable information is kept secure. Only authorized employees and volunteers have access to this information.

Except for the following circumstances TEAR does not pass information on to third parties or overseas recipients:

  • Where information is given to financial institutions/intermediaries for normal bank processing in which case there is a contractual expectation of confidentiality;
  • Where information is given to mail house service providers for bulk processing in which case there is a contractual expectation of confidentiality;
  • Where the Australian Taxation Office requires disclosure of information under Australian Law;
  • Where agents and contractors have agreed to keep information secure and confidential in line with the APPs.

Keeping details accurate and up-to-date

After being advised of any change, personal details that are recorded by TEAR are updated within a reasonable period. To assist in keeping their information accurate, supporters are requested to advise TEAR if there are any errors or changes in their personal information.

Accessing your information

Supporters have the right to access the personal information TEAR stores about them subject to exceptions allowed by law. If supporters wish to view or access their information, they are requested to contact TEAR at the address below.

How to contact us

If supporters have any questions, comments or complaints about TEAR's Privacy Policy or handling of information, they are to contact TEAR's Privacy Officer on 1800 244 986 between 9am and 5pm (AEST or AEDST) Monday to Friday. Alternatively, they can send an email to privacy@tear.org.au or write to:

TEAR Australia Privacy Officer
PO Box 164
Blackburn  VIC  3130

TEAR takes all feedback seriously and any feedback on TEAR’s privacy principles or handling of personal information will be investigated and assessed by the Privacy Officer. The feedback will be responded to within a reasonable time from initial receipt.


TEAR websites use Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology, which is an industry standard for internet payments. This means all of your personal and card details are protected using 128 bit encryption when your details are transmitted over the Internet. This makes it virtually impossible for anyone else to discover and use your details. On secure pages you will see a padlock in the lower right or upper right area of your browser window to indicate that SSL is enabled. If you can't see the padlock, or have other concerns, please contact us.

Commitment to Data Security

Your personally identifiable information is kept secure. Only authorized employees, agents and contractors (who have agreed to keep information secure and confidential) have access to this information.

How to contact us

If you have any questions or comments, please contact TEAR's Privacy Officer on 1800 244 986 between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday. Alternatively you can send an email to privacy@tear.org.au or write to:

Privacy Officer,
PO Box 164, Blackburn, VIC, 3130, Australia


Children gather for a photo, India.


TEAR is committed to being shaped by those that are a part of the wider TEAR community, and we simply can’t do this without your feedback.

View postal and state office contact information.

General Feedback

If you have any feedback on our publications, events, campaigns or anything else about how TEAR operates- whether positively or negatively- please let us know by emailing feedback@tear.org.au or phoning 03 9264 7000.


TEAR also values complaints. They can be an important source to identify and address issues of justice. Complaints can also help us with organisational learning so that we do our work better. Complaints relate to TEAR’s commitment to accountability and relationships, allowing stakeholders the opportunity to have grievances heard and seek redress. Receiving and dealing with complaints offers TEAR an opportunity to restore damaged or broken relationships, or improve new and existing ones.

TEAR Australia has a process for handling complaints. Should you wish to read our complaints policy or lodge a complaint or give any feedback, please email feedback@tear.org.au or phone 03 9264 7000.

Are you concerned about a breach in the ACFID Code?

TEAR Australia is committed to full adherence to the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) Code of Conduct. Should you wish to lodge a complaint against TEAR Australia’s compliance with the Code, please contact ACFID via the following details:

Australian Council for International Development (ACFID)
Code of Conduct
W: www.acfid.asn.au/code-of-conduct
Ph: (02) 6285 1816

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About TEAR

TEAR Australia is a Christian development, relief and advocacy organisation responding to global poverty and injustice. More >

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