Key findings

The Australian Charities Report 2016 builds on the research of previous years and is a comprehensive record to date of the Australian charity sector.

  • Registered charities had a total revenue of $142.82 billion.

  • Charities that provide education services, such as universities and non-government schools had the largest annual revenue.
    • This group makes up 18.6% of the total number of charities, but accounted for 45% of the sector’s total revenue.
  • Charity revenue was generated through:
    • Membership fees, user-pays services, and other income sources – 49.7%
    • Government grants and contract payments – 43%
    • Donations and bequests – 7.3%
  • The most common type of charity is religious groups (31%).
    • However, this group of charities only takes in 6.6% of the sector’s total revenue.
  • Most registered charities are small (67%) with annual revenues under $250,000.
  • Breakdown of charities by size:
    • Small charities (revenue of $50,000 – $250,000) – 67%
    • Large charities (revenue of $1 million plus) – 17%
    • Medium charities ($250,000 – $1 million) – 16%
  • 10.6% of all Australian employees are employed by charities.
  • 49.6% of charities have no paid staff.
  • On average, each charity has 58 volunteers. In total, there are 2.9 million volunteers.
  • Over half of all charities operate in either New South Wales (39.7%) or Victoria (31.1%).
  • Only a small number of charities help communities overseas (8.4%).
  • The top 10 overseas countries that charities help are:
    • India
    • Philippines
    • New Zealand
    • Indonesia
    • Papua New Guinea
    • Cambodia
    • United States
    • Thailand
    • Fiji
    • Nepal

Sub-reports

The Australian Charities Report 2016 is complemented by two sub-reports. Click on the links below to learn more about each report:

Both reports are based on the 2016 dataset, and were produced in partnership by the ACNC and the Centre for Social Impact and the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales.

Downloads

Australian Charities Report 2016