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Martin Lewis calls for bailout for charities at risk of collapse due to Covid

By Robert Booth Social affairs correspondent

Martin Lewis, the MoneySavingExpert founder who is giving away more than £10m of his fortune, has warned that many charities are at risk of collapse as a result of Covid-19 and has called for an urgent government bailout.

The financial journalist has funded a study into the sector, which faces, according to some estimates, a £10bn black hole in its balance sheet as charity shops remain shut and fundraising events continue to be cancelled.

Lewis highlighted the increased focus on health charities, such as the NHS-linked fundraising efforts by Captain Tom Moore, as contributing to an “existential risk to other charity sectors”.

“The huge rise in demand for services, especially for those in the areas of mental health, poverty relief and domestic abuse, is coupled with a substantial drop in their incomes, as donations dry up and charity shops close, leaving a possible £10bn shortfall for the UK charity sector,” he said.

“And while NHS-linked fundraising efforts, by Captain Tom, and others are rightly a cause for celebration, we must be careful to not just focus on this cause célèbre. With millions struggling financially, donations seem a finite resource. If the public focus and donations skew solely towards our NHS heroes, there is an existential risk to other charity sectors. Many of these also provide an essential safety net for millions, but without the benefit of state funding.”

Read the full article by visiting The Guardian