Charities will be subject to nearly £3bn in cuts over the next four years, according to research from the National Council of Voluntary Organisations (NCVO).
Using government figures, the report, Counting the Cuts, found that the voluntary sector will lose around £911m in public funding every year by 2015-16. Distribution of the cuts will not be spread evenly with some areas of the sector being hit harder than others. Budgets for the Department for Health and Department for International Development, for example, have been protected, while others, such as the Department for Communities and Local Government, have not.
DFID's budget has been ringfenced but other government departments are not so lucky. Pic credit: Vicki Francis / DFID
"Putting an authoritative figure on the extent of the cuts has been like trying to pin jelly to the wall. Estimates have varied widely and this report provides a solid baseline figure based on the governments own figures," said Karl Wilding, head of policy and research at NCVO. "Many charities are unwilling to speak out for fear they will jeopardise other funding streams but we currently fact the perfect storm of an increase in demand and nearly £3bn public sector cuts - this is a significant cause for concern."
The research also found that there is significant variance in the way different parts of government and local authorities implement cuts. Many local authorities are making long-term strategic decisions in partnership with their local voluntary and community organisations, while others are making severe and disproportionate cuts that are having an adverse affect on charities' ability to deliver services.
Also read: Coping with the cuts