Responding to the Chancellor’s charity support announcement

On Thursday 8 April, the Government announced £750 million funding to support the charity sector during the coronavirus crisis. We are currently investigating whether we can apply for a grant.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is your response to the announcement by the Chancellor to provide £750 million coronavirus funding for frontline charities?

Coeliac UK welcomes the announcement made by the Government on 8 April 2020 of £750 million of funding for the charity sector. Charities are on the frontline and are currently facing incredible demands for their services while also seeing their income decline.

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) has calculated that the charity sector is facing a funding black hole of at least £4 billion over the next three months, as fundraising and trading revenues have dried up almost overnight.

Will Coeliac UK benefit from the scheme?

There are over 170,000 charities in the UK and it is currently unclear which of these will receive a part of the £750 million in order that they can continue their essential work in supporting the community. Until the detail of the scheme is available, we don’t know whether or not we will be eligible to receive any payment, and if so when the funds will be released.

How will this impact the appeal for funding recently launched by Coeliac UK?

The coronavirus situation is unprecedented and we are more worried about Coeliac UK’s future than ever before. At the moment we don’t know whether Coeliac UK will qualify for funding under the scheme announced by the Chancellor. The appeal will stay live and we send a massive thank you to everyone who has kindly donated so far! We launched www.coeliac.org.uk/save-our-future fearing that we would not be able to continue to provide a service without additional funds.

We want to be here now and tomorrow, providing specialist support for coeliacs and those who need to live gluten free – not just now but for as long as it takes to find a cure.

What impact has the coronavirus crisis had on your income?

The coronavirus situation is unprecedented and we are more worried about Coeliac UK’s future than ever before. We have seen a massive increase in demand for our services, with enquiries and calls for help increasing by 500%. But because of the impact of coronavirus, we expect to see a loss of between 30% and 50% of all our income.

How does Coeliac UK receive funding?

We receive no government funding, our existence depends on membership, fundraising, such as the postponed London Marathon, and commercial income through food safety schemes, advertising and sponsorship, which are all at risk as businesses try and weather the economic impact of the coronavirus crisis.

What steps have you taken to reduce costs?

We’re doing our bit too, and we have furloughed all the staff we can (1 in 3), without damaging the services we provide. We have cancelled or postponed some activities until after the crisis to cut costs as much as possible.

What has Coeliac UK been doing to support the coeliac and gluten free community during the coronavirus crisis?

We have seen a massive increase in demand for our services, with enquiries and calls for help increasing by 500%. We are working flat out to find the answers our community needs – about health risks for people with coeliac disease and to make sure that gluten free food is still accessible. This includes launching a dedicated Coronavirus Hub to help the coeliac community navigate through this crisis and make the best of the resources that we have.