Welsh charities to axe 350 jobs in the next year

Wales Council for Voluntary Action survey reveals pessimistic outlook

Welsh charities expect to shed at least 350 jobs during the next year, according to a recession survey by the Wales Council for Voluntary Action.

The survey of almost 500 organisations, carried out in February, found that 7 per cent of those that employed staff had made redundancies within the previous three months, and 40 per cent thought further redundancies were likely in the next year.

However, the report warns that the findings cannot be extrapolated for the whole Welsh voluntary sector because the respondents were not a representative sample.

The financial situation of 39 per cent of organisations had worsened in the previous three months and improved for only 11 per cent. Meanwhile, 53 per cent expected their financial situation to worsen in the next year and only 13 per cent expected it to improve.

Charities with incomes of between £100,000 and £1m were the hardest hit and the most pessimistic.

The figures are generally slightly worse than in the NCVO's latest Charity Forecast survey, published last week.

Graham Benfield, chief executive of the WCVA, said the number of redundancies "could have been worse", but added that the impact of the recession would be felt more strongly in future years, when public spending cuts began to bite. "Charities relying on private donations and interest payments have taken the first hit," he said.

Benfield said the WCVA was talking to the Welsh Assembly Government about whether the £20m hardship fund announced in the Budget would result in increased funds for Wales.

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