Oxfam income falls 13% as cost of fundraising rises
Fundraising costs amount to 47% of all donations collected
Godelive Nyirabakobwa, who has become a successful grower of pineapples in Rwanda with help from an Oxfam-supported project. Photograph: Simon Rawles/Oxfam Ireland
Anti-poverty charity Oxfam saw a sharp drop in income last year, despite a significant increase in the amount invested in fundraising.
Income from funds generated through its chain of stores as well as donations, legacies and corporate gifts fell over 13 per cent to just over €8 million in the year to the end of last March compared to €9.3 million the previous year.
Even an increase of close to €800,000 in overseas programme grants failed to close the gap with overall funding down almost €900,000 in the year.
The cost of fundraising as a percentage of donations to charity Oxfam Ireland increased to 47 per cent in the year to the end of March 2013, up from 36 per cent in the previous period.
Accounts for Oxfam Republic of Ireland filed at the Companies Office also show that 22 per cent of the total sales from Oxfam’s network of shops are contributed to its charitable funds. This measure of its financial performance was broadly stable on the previous 12 month period.
Oxfam Ireland, which comprises Oxfam Republic of Ireland and Oxfam Northern Ireland, secured total sales of €8.1 million from its charity shops. This includes €4.7 million in sales from its shops in the Republic, which was down slightly on the year before. The net return from the charity shops was €1.9 million, up 1.6 per cent.
Administration costs as a percentage of total costs rose from 5 per cent to 7.7 per cent, while governance costs as a percentage of the total rose from 1.2 per cent to 1.4 per cent, the accounts show. The charity’s council of trustees said these increased costs reflected investment in IT services. Donations arrived at €4.9 million, down from €6.72 million in the previous 12 month period, when fundraising was boosted by the charity’s East Africa Emergency Appeal. When the impact of this appeal is excluded, the contribution from fundraising fell by €650,000.