New report shows charity sectors size

Australia’s charity sector has a combined income of $103 billion, according to a new ACNC report.

The Australian Charities Report 2014, produced in collaboration with the Centre for Social Impact and the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales, is the first in-depth analysis of the Australian charity sector’s financial situation.

It will help us to understand more about the sector’s needs, concerns and challenges.  It also provides a rich source of data for new lines of research and analysis.

Almost $7 billion of charities’ total income comes from donations and bequests.  The top 5 per cent of charities by size received 80 per cent of the sector’s total take.  Charities spent $95 billion pursuing their purposes, the remaining $8 billion set aside for future charitable investment.

The report also found that Australian charities employ more than a million people – a large part of the work force.  When considered alongside the numbers of volunteers – around two million – you begin to get a well-rounded picture of the sector’s size.

The report also focuses on what charities do.  The most common activities are religion, education and research, and health.  Education and research was the biggest activity in terms of income, followed by health, and development and housing.

In addition to the full report, the ACNC, the Centre For Social Impact, and the Social Policy Research Centre will publish summary reports by sector.

The Australian Charities Report 2014 and the sector summary reports are available free of charge at

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