Member Assistance During the Pandemic and Beyond: The MVRO Budget

The Members, Volunteers and Regional Operations Directorate (MVRO) is the main Directorate providing services and support to members. In 2022, MVRO supported over 3,100 members, in about 370 Conferences.

The last few years have presented challenges for MVRO. Income from donations and appeals reduced significantly, as member activities were impacted by COVID-19, and as the household budgets of our supporters stretched to cover job losses and other unexpected strains.

The situation has improved, and income is expected to reach 80% of pre-pandemic level over the next financial year. Government funding is also expected to grow by $0.6m from the previous year’s budget. This is contingent upon us successfully negotiating with the Federal Government for Emergency Relief Funding for our Conference work in additional areas of NSW that are currently unfunded.

During the pandemic, client support services had to be scaled back. Lockdowns and other restrictions meant less visitation, leading to a decrease in client support expenses. Members still, however, managed to assist over 70,000 people in 2021-22 financial year, 25% of whom were coming to us for the first time. 55% of households assisted were experiencing housing stress, and 36% had either Newstart or Job Keeper as their primary source of income.

Client support expenses are expected to return to pre-pandemic levels over the next financial year, as visitation and other member activities again reach capacity.

Overall, MVRO operations look to be recovering well, and if our negotiations with government are successful, and our shops stay open, members will be able to provide assistance to the value of about $10.9 million in FY23.



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