NAO to investigate government’s Covid-19 funding for charities

The National Audit Office is to investigate the government’s funding for charities amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

The investigation is scheduled for Spring 2021 and will look at whether the funding met the government’s objectives, including to support charities’ response to the health crisis.

This includes £750m of funding support announced in April to support charity operations.

The NAO points out that the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport had “stressed the urgency to distribute funds quickly and prioritise those charities most in need”. The investigation will look at the DDCM’s “objectives and the extent to which is is meeting these”.

The investigation will also look at "how the Department has distributed this funding and worked with other government departments and public bodies to do so”, according to the NAO.

Part of the government's £750m package of support has included the £200m Coronavirus Community Support Fund for small and medium sized charities, however this has been beset with concerns around delays and lack of transparency.

Although announced in May as urgent funding for charities it was not fully distributed until November. By July only £8.5m of the fund had been handed out and just a quarter of the funding has been allocated by August.

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