Umbrella body Navca posts surplus for second straight year

The umbrella body Navca has posted a financial surplus for the second year running after years of deficits. 

The membership body, which supports local infrastructure bodies including councils for voluntary service in England, had recorded seven consecutive years of deficits until it posted a small surplus last year

The charity said last year that careful financial management had allowed the organisation to balance its books. 

Its latest accounts, for the year to the end of March this year, show an income of £1.5m, up from £405,000 in the previous 12 months. 

The main reason for the dramatic rise was the almost £1.1m it received in funding from the VCS Emergencies Partnership to pass on as grants to other organisations over the course of the year. Almost all of this money was distributed. 

Overall, Navca recorded a surplus of slightly more than £200,000, which the charity said came after it secured “a number of unrestricted grants to support its response to the pandemic”. 

It said: “Funders allowed Navca to carry forward funds to 2021/22, to enable them to be used where they will have most impact, and reflecting the pandemic lasting longer than anticipated. 

“As a result, Navca has been able to put aside unrestricted income in anticipation of need in future years, which will certainly be needed.”

It also made savings on its chief executive’s salary after Jane Ide left to be succeeded by Maddy Desforges following a six-month gap. 

The umbrella body’s income has fallen dramatically from £2.6m in 2012/13 after several government grants ended and were not replaced.

Since then, it has recorded some significant losses, including a more than £364,000 deficit in 2014/15, but has spent the past few years restructuring to bring it back into the black. 

Judy Robinson, chair of Navca, said: "The impact of Covid-19 has been felt across the voluntary and community sector in many ways, and Navca’s capacity and energy during the last financial year was focussed on leadership, coordination and influence throughout that response to the pandemic. 

“We changed how we worked, and developed new relationships to work with others. We found ourselves in a very different operating environment, doing different activities while keeping true to our strategic objectives and mission.

"Financially our year looked very different to previous years – and likely future years too as the long tail of Covid-19 will be felt for years to come, socially and economically as well as in terms of infection rates and their impact."

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