Rainy Day Trust CEO Bryan Clover has released a statement on the current Covid-19 crisis. Here is the statement in full:
"Firstly, we sincerely hope that you and your families are well and safe. We wanted to update you on what is happening at the Rainy Day Trust and how we are coping with the Coronavirus outbreak. We have finally found a moment to draw breath as the first major surge of activity has settled into a steady routine. The virus has impacted all of the industries that we support, hitting staff and managers alike. Not surprisingly, vast swathes of the workforce have been furloughed and the smaller businesses are facing some very difficult times. This has translated into a tripling of applications compared to last year and we expect that to escalate further in the coming weeks.
"We have developed a Covid-19 Support programme including funding for those laid off or that have been furloughed. More importantly, we wrap around our free debt, legal and housing advice and also offer the free telephone counselling too. We are able to keep food on the table which is our primary aim. Where the applicant’s needs are more complex, we feed them into our regular programme and can help in our usual way.
"We are also talking direct to businesses as soon as they encounter difficulties, so that we can link staff into as many sources of assistance as possible beyond our own. We believe that a preventative measure is far better than a curative one. Obviously, we are only a small charity and this is causing considerable stretch, but at the end of the day it is what we are here to do.
"As you might expect, all of this extra work is causing enormous financial strain for the charity. We have little option in terms of furloughing staff as there are only 3 of us. We have shed as much non-essential cost as possible, and we are working from home which has reduced office administration costs. What reserves we had have dropped significantly in value which will impact us greatly. At present our income has fallen dramatically as all of our spring events have been cancelled, and both businesses and individuals have their focus elsewhere as you might expect. We are being as creative and imaginative as we can be when it comes to generating income from other sources. We have applied for government support under the Chancellor’s new scheme, so are crossing our fingers that this will be successful. Sadly, we don’t qualify for the £10,000 business grant scheme as we do not receive small business rate relief on our business rates.
"Going forward, we are aiming to be as responsive and flexible as we can be while the pandemic continues, and have started our planning for what we will be doing when things start to improve. The annual home visits to our long-term beneficiaries have been delayed, and will be rescheduled once it is safe to do so, and as always, we will follow government advice on personal contact. Obviously, it is far too early to tell when this might be.
"If you or someone that you know could benefit from our help then please get in touch. Our helpline is open as usual on 0203 192 0486, you can get in touch via the website or e-mail me direct on firstname.lastname@example.org.
"If you, or your staff are furloughed and want to do something to help us, then there are a number of things that you can do to help raise some money for us. For example, with your online shopping, route to your chosen retailer through www.easyfundraising.co.uk. Register with them and choose Rainy Day Trust as your charity. Once registered, type in the shop you want to use in the search bar at the top, click on the link and we receive a donation between 0.5% and 12% on your purchase.
"We have a much longer list of ideas so please get in touch and we will email them across to you! We would be very grateful for anything that you or they can do. Some of the ideas are ones meant for ‘normal times’ like a staff BBQ or pub quiz. But with a quick bit of clever thinking, you can turn these into virtual events. It might also be a nice way of touching base with colleagues as everyone is at home.
"So, to finish, thanks to everyone for their continued commitment to the Charity and the wonderful job done in supporting us. These are challenging times, but we will get through it and will work to provide as much help as we can for our colleagues."