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Gloucestershire Business News

Charity job losses 'five times more than announced'

New analysis shows that more than 25,000 jobs have already been lost in the charity sector in the UK, with 60,000 likely to go ultimately.

That's five times more than the approximate 5,500 redundancies that have officially been announced.

Dozens of Gloucestershire charities have seen fundraisers cancelled, charity shops closed and, in some cases, donations drying up, while demand for services is increasing.

The research, which was conducted by Pro Bono Economics, in partnership with the Institute of Fundraising and the Charity Finance Group, found that 19% of charities have already had to lay staff off and 23% plan to make further cutbacks once the government's furlough scheme comes to an end.

One Gloucestershire charity that has been battling against the effects of coronavirus is the Cotswolds Dogs & Cats Home at Cambridge.

Fundraising manager Jane Ellis said: "Fundraising will be hugely affected this year as we have had to cancel all our spring/summer events and collections. The majority of our income is through our 10 charity shops which all had to close on 23rd March.

"Our animal centre and low-cost veterinary clinics cost us £571,000 to run in 2019. In order to meet those costs retail contributed £353,000 which equals 62% of our expenditure. Without our shops we are running at a £30,000 per month loss. In July all our shops have reopened but we are still unsure if footfall will be as good as pre-covid for the rest of the year.

"We have started rehoming our animals via social distance viewings and video calls, and intakes are limited to RSPCA cases and any high priority animals.

"At the start of lockdown we furloughed all our charity shop staff and six of our animal care team. The remaining 10 staff on the animal care team work as two separate teams on four days in a row for 12 hours a day. We have introduced this work method in order to reduce crossover of staff without encroaching on animal care.

"We cannot use our 40-plus centre volunteers so staff are really stretched.

"We are trying everything in our power not to compromise the animal welfare standards. Staff morale is positive and they are all in good spirits considering what is happening around us. They are fully committed to the animals at the centre and will continue to work long hours until the lockdown has been lifted."

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