Faith is deeply embedded in the charity sector. More than a quarter of charities in Great Britain have an association with faith. In some areas of work, like overseas aid and human rights, faith-based charities make up almost half of the charities focusing on a particular issue. But how well do we understand how the influence of faith impacts the work of these charities?
This report is the final output of an 18-month programme of research into the role of faith-based charities. Here we draw together the key findings of this work, exploring the following questions:
- What is a faith-based charity?
- What do we know about the faith-based sector?
- What strengths and challenges does being faith-based bring?
Drawing on desk research, a survey of faith-based charities, and in-depth qualitative interviews with charities, funders and key stakeholders, we outline the unique nature of these organisations, the contribution they make to the wider charity sector, and the challenges and opportunities they face. We also make some recommendations for how the role faith-based organisations play can be better understood, and better appreciated.
More from our research on faith-based charities
Initial data from NPC's programme of research on faith-based charities showing they represent 27% of charities in Great Britain.
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.