Civil society leaders across the UK are calling on government to develop an emergency support package for the not-for-profit, charity and social enterprise sector.
The call comes ahead of the government’s Budget statement in March, urging chancellor Rishi Sunak MP to work with the sector to develop an urgent package of financial support for nonprofit organisations. The submission was signed by 27 leaders from across the sector, including representatives for the Charity Finance Group, Directory of Social Change, Chartered Institute of Fundraising, Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations, Association of Charitable Foundations and more.
The submission highlights that the sector is facing an unprecedented hole in its finances – estimated to be at least £10 billion (€11.28 bn) since the start of the crisis – due to the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown restrictions.
Although the UK government unveiled a £750 million (€846m) package of support back in March 2020, which was welcomed by charity leaders, this was by no means enough to ensure the sector can continue to deliver essential services to those people who rely on them.
As well as asking for an emergency support package, the representation also reiterates the sector’s Five Point Plan which sets out specific measures as to how the government can support civil society in the medium and longer-term.
Sector leaders state:
“…We ask you to deliver on your claim to make changes when necessary to ensure that this Budget delivers for social change organisations and the unique role they occupy in our economy to deliver public benefit.
“Our sector is essential both to the immediate response to Covid-19 and to the medium and longer-term ambition to level up and build back better. Our nation needs our charities and social change organisations to play their part and your Budget must enable them to do so to.”
Sector leaders urged Treasury to meet with them to discuss the proposals in more detail and a specific financial sum which would form part of an emergency package. This forms part of the #NeverMoreNeeded campaign, which highlights the importance of the nonprofit sector and the urgent need to ensure charitable organisations are protected.