Jersey charities could close or cut back services due to fall in fundraising

Charities expected to receive over £1m from fundraisers this summer but now say they are struggling to stay open.  Credit: ITV Channel TV

Charities in Jersey may have to cut back their services or even close after fundraising events came to a halt during lockdown.Charities expected to receive over £1 million from fundraisers this summer, but now say they are struggling to stay open. The Association of Jersey Charities says groups in Jersey have lost well over £1 million of estimated income from fundraising events during lockdown and for now these funds will not be covered.

Credit: ITV Channel TV

The impact of covid 19 has been massive on charities. First of all they've not just lost the fundraising money they would have been gaining through events this summer, they've also lost the backbone of their army of helpers because many of the people who volunteer for charities would themselves now be categorised as in the vulnerable category.

Liz Le Poidevin, Chairman of the Association of Jersey Charities

Headway Jersey supports people recovering from brain injury, and is one of the charities that is struggling.

Every year our running costs are £350,000 or more and every year it's a challenge to meet those running costs. So more recently we've lost around £100,000 due to the Covid virus so that's devastated what we've been able to provide people over the past few months so we're really having to look at our services and how we can still bets deliver them. But, it's so tough now, £100,000 is a lot to lose.

Bryce Alford, Head of fundraising at Headway Jersey
Credit: ITV Channel TV

As restrictions are easing, Head of Fundraising at Headway Jersey, Bryce Alford is hoping his new challenge Beyond Everest will help get the charity on its road to recovery. 

Often people think of Everest as the pinacle of a challenge well why not go beyond everst. So Everest is 29,000ft so going beyond Everst I'm looking at a 10,000 metre plus challenge which is around 32,000ft  and looking to raise £10,000. So a pound per metre.

Bryce Alford, Head of fundraising at Headway Jersey

He added the charity has a "mountain to climb" and the best way to achieve that is by working together as a team, "it's very very difficult but when you do it as a team as a community you can really make the difference".

Jersey charities are getting some support from the government as they are now eligible for financial support from the co-funded payroll scheme, meaning they can claim back up to £1,600 in wages for each of their staff.

Today (4 August), the government has said it is working with the Association of Jersey Charities to establish how islanders can support local charities, as well as the local economy.ITV understands that talks are still on going as to whether islanders will be able to spend their £100 vouchers on helping charities.The Government says more details will be announced in due course.

From tomorrow (5 August) charities, who deliver essential services to the local community and have been impacted financially by Covid-19, can apply to the Jersey Community Foundation for funding.

The Foundation says its short-term priority is to distribute dormant bank account funds released by the Government of Jersey to help charities.

Most Jersey Charites are facing significant pressure on finances and many have lost income from shop closures, cancelled fundraising events or suspension of paid services. We do not have the resources available to replace all these funds, but we will consider all requests where loss of income may result in the cancellation of a project or trigger a significant curtailment of services.

Heather MacCallum, Co-Chair of the Jersey Community Foundation

  • WATCH Alex Spiceley's report...