Focus: Finance and Governance - The Numbers - Stonewall

Patrick McCurry

Stonewall was set up in 1989 as a lobbying group to fight discrimination against lesbians, gay men and bisexual people.

Total income: £1.6m for the year ending 30 September 2004, up from £1.4m in 2003.

Highest salary: One member of staff earned more than £50,000.

Reserves policy: Following a review, trustees decided to aim for a general reserve equivalent to 25 per cent of core funding by 2007/08. This equates to roughly three months of unrestricted spending.

Fundraising costs: The charity raised £1.39m in voluntary income. Its fundraising costs were £581,000, giving it a fundraising ratio of 42p in the pound. This was lower than the previous year's ratio of 47 per cent.

How performance is communicated: The trustees' report and accounts and the annual review are both rather brief. There is information on achievements during the year, and some information on priorities for 2004/05, but not much detail. According to Stonewall, this is a deliberate response to feedback from supporters that suggests they prefer short reports.

A survey of supporters earlier this year found that 93 per cent thought that communication from Stonewall was good or very good. The reports are available on the charity's website, at www.stonewall.org.uk.

The charity says: "Our fundraising ratios might look high, but this is largely because it is much tougher raising money for gay equality than for many other causes. Our longer-term goal is to match the 35 per cent fundraising ratio of the US charity HRC, which has a similar mission to us.

"We invested in the expansion of our fundraising team during the year, and are now well placed to deliver further development of our core income in the next five years."

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