Message from the Chief Financial Officer
In 2012/2013, we continued our vital work supporting the most vulnerable people and communities in Australia and further afield. With increasing demand for our humanitarian programs and services, particularly in migration support, our income and expenditure both increased exponentially from last year. The past year has also been an outstanding success for the Blood Service.
We helped Australians prepare, respond and recover from two emergencies; flooding in Queensland and bushfires in Tasmania. We launched appeals for both events, and have allocated funds for recovery, however the work involved in restoring these communities will continue for some time.
Our everyday Humanitarian Services also continued to grow, especially work supporting asylum seekers moving from immigration detention into the community. This increase in additional clients was the single most significant factor driving the increase in both our income and expenditure.
With fewer international emergencies this year requiring Red Cross assistance, International Program work was reduced. Our existing development programs continued, and ensure we are well placed to respond to future international emergencies.
The Income Statement shows the Society recorded a surplus of $27.3 million, compared to a surplus of $39.4 million for 2012. The majority of this ($26.2m) relates to our Blood Service.
The Blood Service collected and delivered a record amount of plasma for processing into a range of life-saving products this year and also achieved the best match of red cell inventory to patient needs ever. The Blood Service began processing all collections from South Australia at the Melbourne Processing Centre – a change that has driven significant improvements in efficiency and value for stakeholders – and commenced work on implementing a Donor Relationship Management System to provide more personalised donor engagement.
Income and Expenditure
Total income received for the 2013 financial year was $1,023.8 million, which increased $68.9 million on last year. The majority of income was made available through government grants to support the Blood Service ($556.5 million, or 54% of total income). The Blood Service is fully funded by Australian governments. The financial summary on pages 53 to 55 reflect solely the finances of the Humanitarian Services.
Total expenditure was $996.4 million of which $548.4 million (55%) was spent on the Blood Service and $448.1 million (45%) on delivery of Humanitarian Services in Australia and further afield.
Humanitarian Services income
Community support continues to grow year-on-year, and plays a critical role in enabling both our everyday work and disaster appeals. Support from the Australian community grew 58% to $95.8 million from $60.8 million last year, including over $20 million in response to disaster appeals. The growth in community support for everyday work was underpinned by regular monthly gifts and bequests from generous Australians, which together accounted for more than $46 million. These two areas provide a vital source of income for supporting vulnerable people in our communities. Further investment in these areas this year will help underpin stronger fundraising sustainability in future years.
Our supporters donated over $20 million to the Queensland Floods Appeal 2013 and Tasmanian Bushfires 2013 Appeal. Every dollar donated to these appeals was used to assist individuals, families and communities directly affected by the disasters. Red Cross Shops and College activities also contributed $33 million to our income in 2013 and maintained our local community presence.
Humanitarian Services expenditure
Our total expenditure in Humanitarian Services grew from the previous financial year by $71.9 million (19%), in particular reflecting the increase in demand for services and programs supporting asylum seekers.
Overall, 81 cents in every dollar spent went to delivering services and programs to vulnerable people, up from 75% last year.
Statement of financial position (Balance Sheet)
We continued working on our major capital investment project, with our national information technology assets upgrade. This four-year project improves the quality of information technology used in front-line programs, and will help us deliver programs more efficiently. The Balance Sheet shows a large increase of $105.8 million in cash holdings. Most of these funds are pre-allocated to specific purposes, such as advances received for our work with people seeking asylum. In addition, $206.6 million is held in term deposits for the Blood Service, to maximise interest income at minimum risk, and ensure we have prompt access to funds as required. Please refer to the Statement of Cash Flows in the financial accounts for further details.
Specific Purpose Funds, in the Equity Section, represents Grant Income received by Humanitarian Services but not spent, to be held for future use according to the terms of each Grant. These funds have increased $11.6 million (23%) in 2013.
As a volunteer-based organisation, our work would not be possible without our members and volunteers. This critical human element, along with in-kind donations and pro bono support – which are not reflected in any single financial line item – makes the work of Red Cross possible.
We are in a strong position to continue delivering on our core mission of making a positive and long-lasting impact on the lives of vulnerable people. Although we expect our support for people seeking asylum will continue well into the future, it is difficult to predict the effect of policy changes resulting from the change of government. Regardless of the level of demand, we will always be there to support those in need.
Chief Financial Officer