Saved: closure-threatened charity weathers storm

Crop happy gingey

Frown upside down: Fife Gingerbread mascot Gingey is happy.

Charity saved - but some redundancies have been made

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15th March 2019 by Graham Martin 0 Comments

An embattled charity has weathered a perfect storm of cuts – and lived to fight another day.

In January, it looked like it might be all over for Fife Gingerbread.

The charity – which won People’s Choice at the Scottish Charity Awards in 2014 – faced oblivion as many of its funding streams were set to run dry.

This would have led to a loss of jobs and vital services and would have been a grievous blow for the more than 700 families it supports.

However, now, as a result of encouraging talks with Fife Council and Scottish Government, the charity has managed to secure around half the additional funding that was required.

In order to protect existing projects and minimise impact on families the organisation has gone through a restructuring process, with staff roles adapting to fit the new model.

But it’s not been painless – as a small number of redundancies have been made.

Rhona Cunningham, of Fife Gingerbread said: “Receiving this funding has been absolutely crucial for us to be able to restructure and continue supporting the majority of our families. We have to say a big thank you to those who have worked with us to find a solution to our perfect storm.

“What is just as encouraging is that the topic of the unsustainable way third sector organisations are funded is being discussed across the country, and we are committed to making sure that going forward Fife Gingerbread is funded sustainably to safeguard the vital support we provide our families. “

She added: “It isn’t all good news for us, however, as we did not quite manage to secure the full amount we required, meaning regrettably there are still some staff members that will be leaving us and a small amount of families who will be losing our support.”

Fife Council announced on Thursday, 14 February that in its draft budget there was a proposal to provide Fife Gingerbread with an additional £60,000 for three years, which was approved by councillors one week later.

This extra cash will allow the organisation’s Making it Work projects to continue supporting lone parents and families.

The Scottish Government, after meeting with Fife Gingerbread and seeing first-hand the work the charity carries out, confirmed it would provide £91,000 to continue family work in Levenmouth for another year, with its family approach model being praised for addressing ACEs, Scottish Attainment Challenge, Parental Engagement and Pupil Participation and Social Justice.