Homelessness charity commits to increasing further in size after rapid growth

07 Oct 2021 News

Graeme Woodworth is head of finance and operations at The Mustard Tree

A homelessness charity in Manchester has pledged to “get bigger and better” after doubling in size in just four years.

The Mustard Tree, which works across Greater Manchester, has seen its total spending jump from £800,000 to £1.6m since 2016. It is now in the 1% largest charities in the city.

Graeme Woodworth, head of finance and operations at The Mustard Tree, was speaking in the October issue of Charity Finance magazine, which is published by Civil Society Media.

Cost of helping the hungry quadruples

Woodworth said that higher expenditure has been driven by growing need in the area.

The costs for providing meals to local people more than quadrupled after the economic impact of the coronavirus hit, he said, from £4,000 a month to around £18,000. 

Woodworth described managing The Mustard Tree’s finances during this time as a “continual balancing act” between meeting demand for help and planning for the charity’s sustainable future.

The charity has started a new financial strategy following a £2m investment in its headquarters in Ancoats.


He explained that it took “daily, short- and medium-term planning” for the charity to get through the pandemic, during which it closed its main offices and shifted to delivering food around the area.

Woodworth added: “We want to be here in five, 10, 15 years’ time. 

“We want to be a charity that’s growing, and we want to be supporting more and more people.”

The full interview with Woodworth is in the October issue of Charity Finance magazine.

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