Big charities grow

The UK voluntary sector has nearly doubled in size during the
past 10 years, according to a new study.

Big charities have done best in this period maintaining growth as
they received most of the money provided by government contracts
and grants. Small and medium sized organisations, defined as having
income less than £1m a year, have seen their incomes

The public and government provides more than 70 per cent of
charities income with another 15 per cent coming from organisations
themselves, less than 7 per cent from other charities and less than
5 per cent from the private sector.

In 1991 the sector consisted of 98,000 charities with £11.2bn
total income, while in 2001 there were 153,000 charities with total
income of about £20bn.

On average, charities spent 65 per cent of their income on
activities associated with their charitable aims, 17 per cent in
grants to other charities and about 15 per cent on fundraising,
management and administration.

There are about 569,000 paid staff in the voluntary sector, but
almost two-thirds were part-time. Paid staff worked mainly for
large and medium sized charities while small ones relied on

• The Size and scope of the UK Voluntary Sector: The
NCVO’s UK Voluntary Sector Almanac 2004 from the National
Council of Voluntary Organisations

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