At Work: Finance and IT - The Numbers - Lepra

Patrick McCurry

Lepra is a medical development charity working with people affected by leprosy and other diseases.

Total income: £5.5m for the year ending 31 December 2005, down from £5.8m in 2004.

Highest salary: One employee was paid between £60,000 and £70,000.

Reserves policy: The charity aims to hold free reserves equivalent to the value of between three and six months of unrestricted spending. Free reserves at the end of the last financial year end stood at £1.2m, equivalent to three to four months of unrestricted spending.

Pension: There is a group personal pension plan operated by Friends Provident, to which employees contribute 3 per cent of gross salary and the employer 8 per cent.

Fundraising costs: The charity spent £1.24m on fundraising, but it says this figure includes the costs of raising other, non-voluntary income and that the ratio should be based on total income. This would give it a fundraising ratio of 22p in the pound, slightly higher than in the previous year.

How performance is communicated: The annual review has a useful list of targets set during the previous year, and outlines the charity's progress in achieving them. This includes acknowledgements of targets that were not met and the reasons why.

The charity is open about the fundraising challenges it faced during the year. The annual review and trustees' report and accounts are available online at www.lepra.org.uk.

The charity says: "The past year has been a difficult one for fundraising, but we were fortunate that the spread of fundraising activities allowed total income to approach the levels of the previous year. The tsunami appeals affected fundraising activities, particularly in schools, where appointments were cancelled or postponed.

"A great deal of effort was put into retrieving the situation, and community fundraising was very close to budgeted levels. We try to maintain a balance between fundraising from individuals and institutions, but it is important to recognise that 58 per cent of income comes from the general public."

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