Trustees of the Journalists’ Charity have sought to defend its financial position after fears were raised that it could run out of money in the next decade.
The charity, which runs care homes and sheltered housing for retired journalists and also provides emergency grants, is aiming to take action after a warning from its financial advisors.
Residents at the charity’s Pickering House and Harmsworth House in Dorking have been informed that the organisation is considering raising rents.
The Dorking Advertiser claims that a lack of return on the charity’s investments because of the recession means that it earned £249,000 last year in interest, compared to £452,000 ten years ago.
The letter sent to residents said: “The charity has been digging deeply into its reserve to pay its bills – in the last seven years we have taken £3.6m out of our share portfolio.
“The more we take out, the lower the income the following year. So we are in a spiral which, without action now, our financial advisers warn the charity really could run out of money within the next ten years.”
But the board of trustees says the future of the charity is not in any doubt and stressed that its finances are sound.
Sue Ryan, chair of trustees at the Journalists’ Charity, said: “We wrote to residents of our homes advising them of a proposed modest increase in rents, which are necessary occasionally to take account of rising costs.
“We also took the opportunity to advise our residents of the long term outlook for the charity. Our finances are sound and there is no question over the charity’s future.
“We highlighted the impact of the recession on the charity and the fact that as we climb out of it we need to remain prudent to ensure that we are fully equipped to provide high quality care and support for generations to come.”