Victoria’s largest LGBTI advocacy organisation, the ALSO Foundation, is downsizing and moving from its City Village office next week to share a roof with its Collingwood opportunity shop to cut costs.

The ALSO Foundation moved into the Bourke St building in 2008 as part of the City of Melbourne’s City Village initiative.

But the organisation has struggled financially in recent times, posting a $65,900 loss for the 2010/11 financial year and leaving it $133,200 in debt.

In March, the foundation was on the verge of collapse before it received $136,000 in delayed emergency funding from ALSO Care’s Members Resolution Fund.

The move has wider implications for the community though, as several LGBTI community groups have worked under the auspices of ALSO’s tenancy.

The organisation has been in talks with the City of Melbourne and other community groups about the move for the past month.

A city spokeswoman confirmed the move and said it was the foundation’s decision to relocate.

She said Melbourne City Council had been aware of ALSO’s “financial and management concerns” since March 2011 and that ALSO Foundation secretary Daniel Perkins had cancelled the tenancy.

Perkins told the Star Observer the foundation could no longer afford to stay at the City Village building.

“As this year has gone on and the financial situation has been clarified, we’ve decided that it’s no longer viable for ALSO to maintain a presence in the same way it has in the City Village,” he said.

Perkins said the organisation had tried to be as supportive as it could to the remaining community groups on the floor.

“We have tried to communicate our intentions to our partners as clearly as possible,” he said.

Perkins said the foundation would operate from the All So Fabulous op shop on Smith St, Collingwood in the short term as it plans its future.

The foundation is yet to publish its ALSO Directory this year. It is usually released around the Midsumma Festival in February. Perkins said the foundation was still looking to publish the directory this year when it was financially viable.

The idea to save money on rent and move the foundation to the op shop was floated at April’s AGM.

MQFF general manager Danae Gibson said the film festival, which shared an office with ALSO, would not be affected by the foundation’s departure and she was happy to be staying at the City Village.

Perkins said he was hopeful about the foundation’s future.

“I think we feel very confident bringing the organisation to a point at which its profile will be a lot more consistent with its financial resources,” he said.

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