Mental health charities Time to Change and Mind have each mooted the prospect of redundancies in the past week, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to take a financial toll on the voluntary and not-for-profit sector.
On Monday it was announced that Time to Change, a campaign set up 15 years ago by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness, would close down in March 2021 after its government funding comes to an end.
In a statement, Jo Loughran, director of Time to Change, said the charity had hoped to continue campaigning for equity and to end discrimination, working with people whose lives continue to be severely affected by mental ill-health.
“Sadly, we will not be able to carry out this vital work, but will spend the coming months making sure that our ambition is driven forward within the work of Mind and Rethink Mental Illness,” she added.
Commenting on the announcement, Mark Winstanley, chief executive of partner charity Rethink Mental Illness, said the organisation was “incredibly proud of the success of Time to Change”.
“Alongside our partners at Mind, we are sad to acknowledge that the campaign will soon come to a close,” he said.
"In the immediate future our focus will be on supporting our colleagues through this difficult period, but we remain determined to continue the spirit of the Time to Change campaign through our work as a charity.”
All 37 roles at Time to Change are now believed to be at risk of redundancy.
Loughran said Time to Change had entered into a consultation with staff over its closure.
"Mind and Rethink Mental Illness are doing all they can to find suitable alternative employment within their charities for those at risk of redundancy," she said.
"Both charities have wellbeing initiatives in place to support staff throughout the process."
The news follows the announcement last week that around about 80 posts were likely to be lost at Mind, which employs about 525 members of staff, following a drop in income as a result of the pandemic.
In a statement, the charity said the temporary closure of its shops across England and Wales, the disruption of major fundraising events such as the Virgin Money London Marathon, which normally brings in about £1m for Mind, and the uncertainty about income generation for 2021 meant job losses “have been unavoidable”.
“I’m extremely sad to confirm that around 80 posts are likely to be closed due to us expecting a fall in income for next year of around 15 per cent,” Paul Farmer, the chief executive of Mind, said.
However, he added: “The number of people affected will be fewer than 80 as these post closures include many job vacancies that will not be filled [and] fixed contracts that will come to an end, and we will be offering voluntary redundancy.”
Farmer said the charity was doing all it could to make sure people facing redundancy were fully supported.
“Covid-19 has caused a huge surge in demand for our services but at the same time decreased our income. Despite launching a very successful fundraising appeal during the pandemic, we have been unable to secure enough funding to give us security in the medium to long term,” he said.
“As a result, we’ve had to make some very difficult decisions to preserve our frontline and campaigning work for the long term.”