This year – and it astonishes me to say it – Innovista is 20 years old! With you by our side, we have spent two decades building up leaders for God’s mission in hard-to-reach and unlikely places. So many people have heard the good news of Jesus, and communities have been touched and changed by hope many times over.
I want to share the realities of our financial situation with you, and ask for your help.
First, I want to be really clear: Innovista is not yet in a state of emergency. We manage our resources prudently, and are currently still in a viable position. However, the unforeseen events of 2020 have taken a toll on us, and we need to plan carefully to safeguard our ministry.
Will you stand with us now so that all we’ve built together over 20 years doesn’t diminish in the months ahead?
I want to share some of the unexpected decisions we’ve had to make already.
One of the firm commitments we made at the start of the crisis was to protect funding for our international staff. Any financial blows will be (and are being) felt by the UK team first. This is because their situation is much more fragile than ours and in some places there is no meaningful healthcare provision. It will be our last resort to reduce numbers of staff or levels of renumeration.
Regrettably, though, we cannot afford to replace three staff in Omsk, Kiev and Oxford, and when lockdown eases we will save money by not resuming international travel this year. In the UK, we won’t renew the lease on our office when it expires in September. Four precious team members have been on furlough for months. We miss our colleagues, and we grieve for the ministry now on hold. In short, we are doing all we can to minimise costs while we ride out this storm.
In terms of our income, I thank God for the generosity of you, our supporters, in such a challenging season. But we’ve had to cancel our National Directors UK Tour which would have raised awareness and valuable funds. We’re also expecting the London Marathon and Oxford Half Marathon to be cancelled – both valuable fundraising events for Innovista. While we aren’t facing a crisis yet, we are forecasting an overall reduction in income of £170,000 by Christmas. Inevitably, this will mean looking at tougher decisions and further cutbacks.
Each step backwards will reduce the number of leaders we can train; leaders who can bring the hope of Jesus to their communities at a time of unprecedented fear and struggle.
Please, for the sake of the next two decades, would you consider a special one-off gift today here to safeguard this life-giving ministry?