NPC’s programme of research on faith-based charities aims to increase understanding of faith-based charities across the sector.
Our first step was to identify the population of faith-based charities. Though a variety of classifications exist, we realised that they all underrepresented the true numbers. Over a number of months we developed our own approach—combining existing classifications with text analysis to create a more comprehensive dataset.
We believe this is the most advanced and up-to-date analysis of faith-based charities in Great Britain. It shows that 27% of charities in Great Britain are faith-based.
This paper presents only initial findings. The dataset provides the possibility for further analysis, for instance examining charitable income by faith, geographical distribution of faith-based charities, comparisons of faith-based charities against population size, and trends in the size and shape of the faith-based sector. We plan to undertake this further analysis, which will be complemented by a survey with both faith-based and non faith-based charities.
More from our research on faith-based charities
As part of our ongoing programme of work exploring the role of faith-based charities—which make up 27% of the charity sector—here we taker a closer look at some of the attributes of this group of organisations.
We define faith-based charities as organisations that embody some form of religious belief in their mission, founding history or project content. Today we can say with some certainty that the role of faith-based charities in the charity sector is changing; as is the context in which they work.
Following an 18-month programme of research into the role of faith-based charities, here we draw together the key findings of this work. We outline what makes faith-based charities unique, the contribution they make to the wider charity sector, and the challenges and opportunities they face.