Macmillan Cancer Support will furlough around 600 staff at the charity, which amounts to about 30% of its workforce.
Each of these staff members will have the remaining 20% of their salaries topped up by Macmillan so they will continue to receive full pay for the duration of furlough.
The charity has said that it faces a 50% drop in its income, and launched an emergency fundraising appeal last week. Macmillan’s most recent annual income was £235m.
Lynda Thomas, chief executive at Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “The impact of coronavirus is profound and far-reaching for Macmillan. One consequence is that some members of staff are unable to carry out their jobs and many have experienced a significant decrease in their workloads.
“In consultation with our staff, we have decided to furlough around 30% of roles (around 600 people) in order to make the most of the government’s Job Retention Scheme.
“At Macmillan, our people are at the heart of everything we do, and we are confident that we are taking the right steps to protect and support both our staff and our supporters through this period.”
On launching its emergency fundraising appeal, the charity said it has seen a sharp rise in demand in the wake of the coronavirus crisis. It has set aside a £5m fund to cover the cost of new services and support.