London groups fear they cannot meet demand

Survey shows 80 per cent 'not confident' about ability to cope with recession

More than 80 per cent of voluntary and community groups in London are concerned they will not be able to meet demand for their services during the recession, a report has shown.

Eighty-two per cent of the 62 groups surveyed for The Big Squeeze, compiled by the London Voluntary Service Council to examine the impact of the economic downturn on community groups, said they were not confident about their ability to cope with demand.

Sixty-nine per cent said their workload had increased as a result of the recession, and 94 per cent said the recession was affecting the communities they worked with.

Peter Lewis, interim chief executive of the LVSC, said: "More than three-quarters of organisations are already taking steps to continue to deliver vital services. I am confident that as more support becomes available, the voluntary and community sector will show its flexibility and resourcefulness to get new staff and systems in place very quickly to meet the new demands."

He added: "It is essential that the Government, the sector and its public sector partners keep a close watch on the impact of the recession as it progresses, and are able to work quickly to address changes in need."

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