A survey of members of the local infrastructure body Navca found almost four out of five expect their finances to get worse in the next year.
The quarterly survey, conducted earlier this month with 33 organisations, found that 26 respondents expected finances to get worse for themselves, while 24 expected finances to get worse for their local sector as a whole. Navca’s membership largely comprises councils for voluntary services and other local representative bodies.
The survey found that 16 out of 33 charities expected their overall position to get slightly worse or much worse in the next three months. But 11 charities expected the situation to improve, and one said that their situation would be much improved. The rest expected no change.
The survey found that 24 members expected to see a fall in their reserves in the next three months and that 18 expected to increase collaboration with others. It found that relationships with local statutory bodies were improving – particularly the NHS, where 14 said relations had got better and only six said they had got worse.
Joe Irvin, chief executive of Navca, said that he was encouraged by the data on collaboration. "The financial pressures that make some organisations look inwards seems to be making our members look outwards," he said. "I believe this is a sign of the positive attitude of our members and their focus on supporting voluntary action.
"This survey backs up what I have witnessed when visiting members. They are working harder at cooperating with local councils, health and police authorities despite the enormous financial pressures being faced."