The local infrastructure body Navca is on course to deliver a "balanced budget" in the next financial year after three years of spending significantly outstripping income.
Speaking at its annual general meeting yesterday, Navca treasurer Soo Nevison said that the charity was on the verge of "turning the corner" in the financial year 2018/19.
"We should be coming in at around £400,000 with all the membership fees and bits and pieces we have," Nevison told members. "I’m hoping that this time next year we’ll be able to say we have a balanced budget."
Navca’s income has fallen dramatically from £2.6m in 2012/13 after several government grants ended and were not replaced.
The charity’s accounts, published this week, show it had a total income of £201,161 and spent £432,025 for the year to the end of March 2018. However, the charity had planned to end the financial year in deficit for the third year in a row as part of its restructuring plans.
Jane Ide was appointed as chief executive in the summer of 2017 and has had to hire almost a whole new staff team in the past year.
The accounts show that the average number of full-time-equivalent employees at the charity fell from 7.5 in 2016/17 to five last year.
It incurred redundancy costs of £36,200 in 2017/18, the accounts show.
In her introduction to the report, Caroline Schwaller, the outgoing chair of Navca, says it was "a year of intensive transition to a new structure and refreshed objectives". She adds: "Navca is now leaner and more focused than it was a year ago.
"We have introduced a new membership model designed to respond to the diversity of our members and what they need from us; embracing new technology has given us the capacity to refocus our time and capacity on more direct engagement with members; and the strategic pillars defined by the board in 2016/17 – influence, intelligence, communication and supporting the movement for local social action – have given us a strong framework within which to work."