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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Oxfam provides aid for record numbers, report finds

This news post is almost 8 years old

Annual report showed charity helped almost 9 million people last year.

Oxfam provided emergency aid to more people than ever before during 2015/16, according to the charity’s annual report.

In total, almost 9 million people received support from Oxfam GB last year, the majority of whom were fleeing conflict or disaster.

Public donations to the charity increased by £7m to reach £114.5m, the second-highest ever recorded, with the charity saying major humanitarian disasters such as the Nepal earthquake and ongoing conflicts in South Sudan, Syria and Yemen had been met with “generous responses”.

However, while income rose by three per cent, the charity’s expenditure of £332m was an increase of almost eight per cent over the year before.

Public support is vital to enable us to continue to help the most vulnerable

Mark Goldring, Oxfam GB chief executive, said: “We are incredibly grateful to the British public for their continued support for Oxfam. The public’s generosity is testament to their commitment to end poverty and suffering around the world, during what remain for many uncertain times financially.

“Violence and disaster are forcing record numbers of people to flee their homes in search of safety, often with little more than the clothes on their backs and a few possessions they can carry. The scale of the crisis has prompted the biggest humanitarian response in Oxfam’s history as we provide desperately needed food, water and shelter.

“While we push world leaders for a more effective response to these complex crises, from helping to end conflicts to hosting more refugees, public support is vital to enable us to continue to help the most vulnerable.”

Oxfam’s income in 2015/16 was a record £415m.

Its network of 650 shops around the UK saw a slight drop in overall sales of one percent, earning a net income of £17.8m after operating costs.

Shop managers reported a fall in sales from donated goods, especially clothing for adults, due to difficult trading conditions, with lower footfall and declining consumer spending.

The charity said it was also struggling to recruit enough volunteers to keep the shops running – although the number of volunteers in Oxfam shops remains around 23,000, there has been a drop in the number of hours that people are able to give.

This led to some outlets temporarily closing due to volunteer shortages over the Christmas period.

The charity is now appealing for anyone who can give a few hours in their week to consider volunteering.

Andrew Horton, Oxfam’s trading director, said: “Today’s life pressures mean that people can give less time than they did in the past so we need more volunteers to keep the shops open and raise more money to fight poverty.

“We’re asking people to give just four hours a week in their local Oxfam shop. There’s a job to suit everyone – from window dressing to serving customers, sorting donations to listing products online, organising pop-up events to managing social media – and it’s hugely rewarding.”