Give painted road marking

Giving up?

By Ellen Harries 13 October 2014

Last week the Charity Commission released new figures on the state of the charity sector.

Here are a few headlines.

The number of charities with incomes over £10 million has exceeded 1,000 for the first time (1,005 to be precise)—a rise from 883 in 2010 when the Coalition first came to power.

So, according to the Charity Commission, charities have been growing in size, and perhaps unsurprisingly (at least for this reason) the overall income of the sector has also increased from £53.86 billion to £61.43 billion. That’s up 12%. Not insignificant.

We know the number of charities has remained relatively stable within this timeframe. So are we therefore seeing the growth of the large players and a hollowing out of the middle, as our Chief Executive, Dan Corry, predicted last year?

It certainly seems the big boys are doing well. The proportion of total gross income held by charities with incomes over £10 million has increased from 55.9 percent in 2010 to 58.4 percent in 2013. These adds to a steady trend over time, with this figure rising from just 42.9% in 1999 when the Charity Commission first released this data.

So we know that the sector is receiving more money, and that more is going to bigger charities. But where is it coming from? Aren’t we meant to be feeling the pinch? Or are more people giving to charity in this time of need? What about government funding?

According to NCVO’s latest almanac, this increase in income coincides with a decrease in both grant and contract funding from government. So, in short, the money doesn’t appear to be coming from government.

The latest data on individual giving has not yet come out. This is but a teaser as we wait patiently for CAF’s wonderful UK Giving report, currently undergoing a re-vamp. Individual giving is by far the largest source of income for voluntary sector organisations, so it should shed some interesting light.