Charities are at the frontline of dealing with the COVID19 crisis across the UK and are doing everything they can to maintain critical services and respond to community needs.
However, this crisis has generated massive financial and demand pressures on charities and other social sector organisations at extremely short notice. Many charities large and small will be going bust within days or weeks, or forced to cut services or furlough key staff – leaving thousands of people without critical, often life-saving help.
Despite the continued efforts of all the national charity infrastructure organisations under the banner of the #EveryDayCounts campaign, the UK Government, and particularly the Treasury, still isn’t convinced that charity and voluntary organisations matter. Officials are repeatedly delaying us with unrealistic demands for information and just don’t get the seriousness of the situation. It’s time to turn up the heat on the politicians.
We’ve now got data that shows what’s happening: research commissioned by the Institute of Fundraising found that:
- Charities are reporting a projected loss of 48% to their voluntary income, and a third wiped off from their total income;
- 52% of charities have reduced existing or previous levels of service, with a further 12% intending to in the future;
- 83% say that the most important thing for their organisation’s sustainability over the coming 3 to 6 months is access to emergency grant funding;
- 84% of charities think their organisation could play a role in responding to the coronavirus outbreak, with the majority saying government funding was needed to help them to do so;
- 91% of charities surveyed have already or expect to have their cash flow disrupted, with 62% indicating that these would result in reduced charitable activity.
Data is important, but even more important are your stories. This is what will convince the government to act – the social and human cost of what’s happening to people and communities right now. DSC is here to help but we can’t do it without you.
Please reach out to MPs, local councillors, and local media to explain what society will lose if your charity goes under or has to cut back services. The window of opportunity to get substantial financial assistance from government may be closing, fast. We have to keep building public and political pressure on the government and we need your help.
Download this this template letter and send it to your MP – let’s get those parliamentary postbags popping, pronto! MPs are currently on Easter recess, so send it to their constituency address too – or demand an audience at their surgery.
Get your charity’s story in the press by adapting this template press release to bring attention to your cause – coverage will also increase the pressure on politicians.
Here’s some simple and quick steps to take today:
- Find your MP and constituency on Parliament’s website with their name or your postcode
- Download the template letter which contains pre-written text and self-explanatory text in yellow to which you should delete and update with your own details
- Email and/or post it to your MP (contact details available at the link under 1 above, as well as your MP’s constituency address – use this until after Easter)
- Download the template press release which outlines the categories and sequence of information to include, together with examples for illustration.
- You can find contacts for BBC media here.
- If you’re on twitter or other social media, take a photo of your letter and tweet it, including the hashtag #EveryDayCounts or…
- Send a copy to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your support, and keep fighting the good fight!