Local Charity Fife Gingerbread Facing Funding ‘Perfect Storm’

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

At a time when the need for family support in Fife is at an all-time high, a ‘perfect storm’ is developing at local independent charity Fife Gingerbread, a storm that could result in the loss of jobs and also vital support services to hundreds families across the Kingdom.

With many funding streams in the next few months that are ending, facing cuts, or are only partially funded to continue, the organisation, which supported 739 families in 2018, has so far been unable to secure additional money to continue its vital work across the region, and may soon be forced to operate at a third of its current state.

This huge cut in services would mean staffing levels potentially dropping from 41 down to 14, a loss of 27 jobs. As a result of this there would be no more support for up to 253 of the 348 families Fife Gingerbread currently works with, which would leave 72 children at high risk of social work involvement.

Rhona Cunningham, CEO of Fife Gingerbread said: “Knowing we may not be unable to continue supporting so many families is devastating, particularly as we know there are 72 children within those families that will possibly require social work intervention. If even 10 of those children were to end up in residential care it would cost the local authority a staggering £1.6m per year; so the opportunity is there for Fife Council to fund our work now and save money in the long run.”

Rhona added: “The senior managers in the organisation and our board members have been working tirelessly for months to try and avoid this situation, but unfortunately securing funding is as difficult as it’s ever been, which is ironic as the need for our service has never been greater.”

Fife Gingerbread now faces a race against time to find funding before it is forced to dramatically reduce its service, which would impact hundreds of families across Fife.