RVS reports almost 20 per cent fall in annual income

But the charity says it expects income to rise again in the current financial year

Income at the Royal Voluntary Service fell by almost £12m last year, mainly because of a large fall in voluntary income, its latest accounts show.

The charity’s accounts for the year to 31 March 2019, which were filed with Companies House last week, show that income was £53m for the year, down from £64.8m in the previous 12 months. 

The charity's income has fallen by approximately £18m since 2013/14, when it was £71m.

The 2018/19 accounts show that voluntary income dropped from £9.5m to £3m, with income from trusts and lotteries falling from £8m to £1.6m.

Income from players of the People’s Postcode Lottery was £5.8m in 2017/18, but was put at zero for the 2018/19 financial year.

The charity spent £58.8m in 2018/19, compared with £64.1m the year before, meaning it was operating at a deficit of £5.5m.

The RVS had total funds of £23.6m for the year covered in the latest accounts, down from £29.1m the year before.

Chris Hoult, director of finance for the Royal Voluntary Service, said: "We have embarked on a clear strategy and are returning to our roots as Britain’s leading voluntary service organisation.

"This has been very well received by our partners and the public, with growing numbers of people enquiring about volunteering and more than 100 sustainable volunteer-led groups opening in the past year."

Hoult said that the charity’s income in the current financial year, covering 2019/20, was reversing the trend in its income over the past few years.

"Our income is currently up on last year, so the income reduction is not a trend for the charity as a whole," said Hoult.

"The reduced income in 2018/19 was in line with the charity’s expectations in terms of phasing of income from our trust and lottery partners, and also the changing environment of commissioned services, which saw the closure of local authority-funded services such Meals on Wheels.

"While we have closed down such services, our overall strategic position is positive."

The charity had nearly 20,000 volunteers in 2018/19. The accounts say that 90 per cent of its volunteers said that they would recommend the RVS to friends and family. 

The RVS volunteers provided £37.5m of activity in 2018/19, the accounts say.

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