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No Deal Brexit - Money value after Brexit, illustrative image

No-deal Brexit fund

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) has called on the government to set up a no-deal Brexit fund for charities to help mitigate some of the effects it would have.

NCVO’s Chief Executive Sir Stuart Etherington has said voluntary organisations could be on the front-line in supporting communities in the event of a no-deal Brexit but would need resources to do so. He wrote to Baroness Barran, the charities minister, warning that charities must not be overlooked as the government ramps up preparation for a possible no-deal Brexit on 31st October.

Stuart said government departments have been asked to submit bids to the Treasury for extra funding for a no-deal departure from the EU and urges Barran to take the opportunity to ask for funding to be set aside for voluntary sector organisations to support local communities.

"In the event of a no-deal EU exit, it is very likely that many charities will be front and centre not only in providing an immediate response, but also in supporting communities up and down the country in the longer term," he says. "There is also a strong case for the Office for Civil Society to call for a ‘resilient communities fund’, set up specifically for charities working with and supporting local communities."

"While business investment is crucial, to be truly effective it must go hand in hand with the social support that many families and individuals need in order to improve their lives and tackle the underlying, often longstanding problems," he says. "Often it is community groups and volunteers who can best deliver this. However, this could be particularly difficult for charities that are already operating on low reserves. A funding package should therefore be set up specifically for charities that can help support communities with a range of needs in the event of a no-deal EU exit."

He said this should provide "easily accessible" grants with minimal administration so they could be distributed swiftly to support services that will be needed.

Read: Third Sector - NCVO calls on government to set up no-deal Brexit fund for charities