How hard is the recession hitting charities?
A major survey of senior fundraising and finance professionals in the charity sector has begun today (4 Jan)
The results of the survey, the sixth in a series designed to track the recession’s impact on the charity sector, will be revealed at a pre-Budget breakfast debate on 15 March 2013 with finance and fundraising sector leaders.
The Managing in a Downturn series, produced by PwC, Charity Finance Group (CFG) and the Institute of Fundraising (IoF), has been charting how charities are coping in economic decline since 2008. Over 400 charities responded to last year’s survey ‘Managing charities in the new normal - a perfect storm?’, providing a real insight into how they are responding to funding cuts and increasing demand for services.
Caron Bradshaw, CFG chief executive, said: “The announcements in December’s Autumn Statement - downgraded economic forecasts, continued austerity and cuts to welfare – acted as a stark reminder that as a sector, we’re still walking on very thin ice. These surveys are invaluable in showing what’s really happening on the ground, and this year we expect to see evidence of bold moves from charities to tackle funding gaps, such as creative partnerships or tapping into reserves to fund new projects.”
PwC director Ian Oakley-Smith said that previous surveys indicated collaboration was on the up, as charities increasingly work together to reduce the cost of competition: “They are also finding innovative ways of coping with challenges to the economic climate. We anticipate that the results of this survey will reflect a significant further move in this direction, together with increasingly diverse ways of raising much needed funding."
Peter Lewis, chief executive at the IoF added: “In last year’s survey almost all (93%) the charities that took part reported a tougher fundraising climate, and 1 in 5 of them said that they had considered merger as a means of survival. Charities are faced with continuing economic uncertainty and reduced income. I hope this year’s survey will show how resilient the sector continues to be, able to innovate and adapt to this changing environment.”