Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced the government will be releasing £750m to support charities through the coronavirus pandemic. The package is broken down into three parts; the first consists of £360m in direct grants, the second represents £370m for smaller charities and the third is £2m set aside to match donations made by the BBC’s ‘Big Night In’ fundraiser.
Evolve Housing + Support is welcoming all funds made available by the government during these difficult times, but maintains that it represents only a drop in the ocean.
For the past few weeks, Evolve has been calling on the government for emergency funding to ensure that it can continue to provide crisis critical support to homeless people across London.
At the beginning of April the organisation wrote to government ministers and the cabinet to emphasis the true cost of coronavirus and how it had been effecting homelessness services across London. Homeless people are among some of the most vulnerable and more detail is needed on whether the government categorises them as such.
A survey of over 500 charities carried out by the Institute of Fundraising, the NCVO and the Charity Finance Group, found that charities expected to see an average decline of 48% in fundraised income and are currently seeing a rise in demand for their services of 42% on average.
Peter Lewis, chief executive of the Institute of Fundraising has said: “over the next 12 weeks charities will lose £4 billion in vital income that they would have received from the British public, at the same time as a 42% surge in demand for their services.”
Evolve Housing + Support CEO Jeremy Gray said: “We welcome the Chancellor’s announcement of extra funding to support charities. Any extra Government funding is most welcome. However, given the scale of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, the funding announced is not sufficient.
“We are also keen to see the full detail – it is crucial that charities providing vital front-line services to vulnerable homeless people are supported through this crisis.
“It is essential that the financial challenges of the sector are fully understood as demand for homelessness services continues to rise, and costs continue to rise – especially the significant additional staffing costs we are experiencing at the current time.’’