Overcoming challenges in the charity sector in 2021
After a more than a year of social distancing, lock-downs and furlough – words that would have seemed alien to us before – charities have had their work cut out for them in helping our society recover from financial hardship, ill health, grief and a host of other social ills.
However, charities themselves have been far from immune to the effects of the pandemic. Access to volunteers, the lifeblood of many charities, high street retail and fundraising opportunities (bungee jumps, marathons, sky dives, and the like…) have all, to some extent, been curtailed, making it difficult for charities to raise the funds they need and to keep operating effectively.
But, like the public it serves, the not-for-profit sector has demonstrated resilience and creativity, diversifying the ways in which they deliver their services and generate funds – on-line counseling and yoga classes spring to mind!
Nevertheless, many of the charities that have survived the last year are now facing an uphill struggle to replenish their coffers as they seek to revitalise their activities and support us all in a return to safer, happier and healthier lives.
Trustees have a big role to play in helping their charities navigate the challenge of ensuring they can continue to operate as going concerns, at a time when reporting accountants and auditors will be asking tougher questions about the future prospects and financial viability of all organisations.
But help is at hand. The Charity Commission has produced ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for the charity sector’.
The ICAEW has gathered together their own insights and other resources that provide practical information on managing charity finances and delivering services safely.
And we, at MHA, will be running a webinar, on 12 May 2021 at 9.00am, entitled, ‘Going concern and financial sustainability – why all charities need to consider these challenges in 2021’.
A panel of speakers will provide advice and practical guidance on what charities can do to respond to financial difficulties, good practice in financial management and governance and the impacts and requirements of ISA 570 – Going Concern.