Finance News: The Numbers - Mencap

Patrick McCurry

Mencap is the UK's biggest learning disability charity, working with people with a learning disability and their families and carers.

It campaigns for equal rights and greater opportunities. Mencap is an individual membership organisation, with a local network of more than 1,000 affiliated groups.

Total income £146m, up from £125m in 2002/03. Figures include net retail income.

Highest salary - Two directors are paid £100,000-£110,000, but Mencap declines to say who they are.

Reserves policy The charity's policy is to have unrestricted reserves of at least £10.5m. This equates to three months' spending supported by fundraising income, one month's spending supported by services income and a fund that covers property depreciation. Reserves were £18.6m at the end of the year and, because of a pension fund deficit, the charity is maintaining this level of reserves.

Fundraising costs - The charity spent £4.4m on fundraising and publicity, of which £2.8m was fundraising costs, and its donated income was £10.1m.

This equates to 27p for every £1 raised. This was more than the previous year, when the ratio was 23 per cent.

Pension - Under the FRS17 accounting rule, the final salary scheme was in deficit by £19m at the end of the financial year.

How performance is communicated The annual report is heavy on text but well written. There are some links made between the charity's activities and its finances. The charity's Equal Chances report is more accessible and describes Mencap's future plans and challenges. Reports at

The charity says - Within the £2.8m spent on fundraising, we have had to build on our investment in new fundraising systems. We expect to see this trend continue next year as we seek to make more resources available to our beneficiaries.

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