Shaun Cannon CEO Kids Plus Foundation

This month, we got the opportunity to talk to Shaun Cannon, CEO of Kids Plus Foundation. The organisation specialises in providing physical therapy and support programs for young people with neurodevelopmental conditions such as cerebral palsy. 

We asked Shaun about the impact that COVID-19 may have on the for-purpose sector and particularly those funded exclusively by the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). We’re pleased to be able to share his response with you.

I thought you’d be interested in getting a sense of the impact COVID-19 may have on the for-purpose sector, and those in particular funded exclusively by the NDIS. 

The challenge for providers who derive income from client facing service delivery is that their ability to generate income is significantly compromised by such things as self-distancing and restrictions on movement. 

At Kids Plus, we’ve moved to a remote model of service delivery via telehealth services, as have many others. Not ideal, but the best available option in the current climate. Organisations that rely heavily on fundraising initiatives to supplement core operations will be doubly impacted. It is probable that many within the sector will be required to scale back or suspend some aspects of service delivery. All discretionary projects and initiatives are likely to be put on hold. 

Government initiatives such as the PAYG rebate and the Job Keeper payment for eligible organisations will provide a significant boost to cash flow. For NDIS service providers, the 10 per cent temporary loading on some supports and changes to cancellation policies have been welcome initiatives. For most for purpose organisations, wage costs is the biggest expense lever they can pull if required. 

The aim in coming months will be to ensure that any cuts to the workforce are minimised so that service provision continues at the required level and duration.

The full extent and impact of COVID remains unknown. No doubt the philanthropic community will respond in an appropriate and timely way. The for purpose service sector will be tested, along with many others. Support from the philanthropic community will be enormously important in supporting good organisations get through a challenging period.

Shaun Cannon – CEO of Kids Plus Foundation

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