E219 - Cost Of Living Crisis With Dame Laura Lee And Angela Kail
““…It’s going to be worse than Covid and I’m slightly frustrated by the sector’s response as I don’t think we’re getting the collaboration, the common asks that we were around Covid …” – Angela Kail
In this episode we sat down with Dame Laura Lee, CEO of Maggie’s and Angela Kail, Director of Consulting at NPC about the cost of living crisis and what this means for the charity sector. It’s not an easy listen as we delve into the “triple-headed storm” the sector is facing. There is definitely pressure on the sector from multiple angles and every charity needs to consider what the cost of living crisis means for them.
1. “The triple-headed storm”
Some charities are seeing a severe rise in demand from beneficiaries. At present, this is mainly organisations dealing with people in extreme poverty, so food banks are being greatly impacted. However, there will be big knock-in effects for health charities as evidence tells us that those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are likely to face the most acute consequences when it comes to access to vital health treatments. Almost every charity is seeing the impact of rising costs. That’s impacting in lots of different ways for example; staff shortages because you can’t pay wages, through to volunteer shortages because you can’t do things like pay the petrol for them to travel. Finally, there are already signs that people are giving less.
2. Political vs “party-political”
Charities should endeavour to remain as that crucial voice for beneficiaries and those who may not be heard as loudly in wider society. This is a great time for charities to engage your local politicians. Invite them into your service and really highlight the needs of your beneficiaries and why your organisation is vital to addressing these demands within their community.
3. Transparency with your funders is key
The only way through the cost of living crisis is to talk to your funders. Risk should be held by the people that have the most capacity to hold it, and that is your funders. You have to be honest with them; and fortunately, one of the key lessons from Covid showed that when you were honest with funders, it paid off. Have open conversations with them about unrestricted funding models, empowering your expertise as the service providers to spend the money where its most needed. Finally, having compassionate conversations with your funders when needed which show you are thoughtful about their challenges as well as your own, will enable any who can’t support right now to come back when their circumstances improve.
This episode of Charity Chat has been brought to you by our platinum sponsor Work for Good. Work for Good believes everyone should be able to turn the work they do into good. Through their fundraising platform, they offer charities a way to engage and work with small businesses, including founders, owners and sole traders who want to make an impact for charities through their sales. To find out more, please visit workforgood.co.uk.
We hope you enjoy this week’s episode.
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