Christian Aid has made the decision to implement the UK Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (known as furloughing) to ensure that its core international work can continue, and to ensure livelihoods in the long term.
The international development charity is anticipating a drop in unrestricted income of £6 million in the current financial year and is taking the step to focus on what is business critical to support vulnerable communities over the next few weeks. The charity aims to save £1m in payroll over the next nine weeks; supplemented by fully drawing down on its available reserves.
New measures that will help Christian Aid to protect its operations, staff and income have been put in place. It will implement the UK Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (known as furloughing) – from 27 April 2020 until 30 June 2020. The Charity will ensure no staff member falls below the real living wage, and also top up the government scheme to a maximum of 80% for any staff who earn more than the furlough cap.
Christian Aid expects that 20% of UK-based staff will be furloughed. All non-furloughed UK staff have been asked to move to a four-day week with 80% of salary for 12 weeks.
Critical functions to help deliver Christian Aid’s programme response to this unprecedented global health and economic crisis will remain at full capacity. The Charity considers it important that it retains the capacity and ability to help those in countries where health systems are weak with basic requirements such as running water not readily available, where people are already living in extreme poverty and debt-ridden governments are unable to provide resources that are needed at this time.
Directors and most senior managers will not be furloughed, but the leadership group have been asked to move to 80% pay for the three months of May through July. They will continue to work a full working week, to lead Christian Aid through this crisis.
Amanda Khozi Mukwashi, Christian Aid’s CEO, said:
‘These have been and continue to be hard decisions to make. We must do what is right for the communities we serve, for supporters who walk with us and for our staff.
‘Whilst there are many threats to our traditional income sources, it is also clear that Christian Aid’s vision, mission and values are needed now more than ever – this is our moment to show the world we care, we are equipped, and we can join the fight against this pandemic.
‘From our homes, through our digital channels and virtual networks, we must connect with supporters, donors and institutions to deliver relief, strengthen poor people’s resilience and build a safer world beyond the pandemic.’
‘We are encouraged by the response to our Coronavirus appeal and look forward to working with the thousands of churches and supporters up and down the country who will continue to take part in our new digital Christian Aid Week to support the world’s poorest and most marginalised who will feel the impacts of Coronavirus deeply. Coronavirus has shown us that our futures are bound more tightly together than ever before.’
Christian Aid Week this year (10 – 16 May) is being run online.
For more information, visit our website: https://www.christianaid.org.uk/christian-aid-week/virtual-fundraisers
Christian Aid is also running a Coronavirus Appeal: https://www.christianaid.org.uk/appeals/emergencies/coronavirus-emergency-appeal