The Pipal Tree Annual Review 2021
All registered charities have to go through a rigorous independent inspection of their finances in advance of submission of their Annual Reports and Accounts to the Charity Commission. Charities have up to ten months from the end of the financial year (in our case, the 31st December) to complete the process. As ever, we work really hard to work through this annual requirement as quickly as possible and the accounts are being submitted today in very good time. The document is substantial, in line with the Statement of Recommended Practice that charities must follow, but we distil the key elements into a review that is appropriate for busy people. You can find the Annual Review by clicking on the image below:
In the Annual Review, you will read how we have been able to flex to respond to contemporary needs while still conducting historical projects in support of children (especially girls) and women. Specifically, those new needs included the requirement to help desperate, marginalised people through the nightmare of COVID lockdowns in Nepal. In 2021 we fed 14,000 men, women and children in southeast Nepal who faced starvation. And, less immediately but most important of all, the requirement to respond to a climate emergency that is an existential threat to all of us. We are very proud of what we have achieved operationally, while returning to a surplus of income over expenditure and an amazing 20% increase in annual income over the previous year. The operating surplus has arisen in large part through a substantial reduction in core costs in Nepal while the increase in income is a reflection of remarkable donor generosity and loyalty. In short, we are now sustainable and very much "on the up" as we emerge from a financial crisis. COVID on one hand caused that crisis through a drop in donations but on the other it did make us review how we were implementing projects and how we could operate more efficiently through cutbacks in NGO support and by networking with other charities.
The Review is an invaluable reference point if you are writing or updating your Will. A final gift to us will be well spent. Note how in 2021 we invested 87.5% of funds raised on our Nepal programmes. This compares very favourably with the large household name charities. For example, in 2020 ActionAid spent 76% of its income on charitable activities and in 2018-19 WaterAid reported spending 54% of its income on programmes. And how would your bequest be used? The Trustees have decided that all legacy income (unless stated otherwise by the donor) will be used to build up a fund that will allow us to respond to emergencies in Nepal. These can be natural disasters such as earthquakes that may or may not be related to climate change (e.g. floods). Or potentially we could deploy the fund dealing with future pandemics. Sadly, in Nepal, it's not a case of "if" but of "when". Having a substantial ring-fenced fund available would allow us to respond immediately rather than being reliant on emergency appeals as has been the case in the past. If we are able to react quickly, undoubtedly we will save lives.
If you would like to discuss your Will, please do contact me in confidence to discuss your wishes.