Benefacts Analysis 2020

  • 32,841 Organisations
  • 165,075 Employees
  • 86,481 Directors/charity trustees
  • €14.2bn Turnover
  • €5.9bn State funding

Ireland’s nonprofit sector has many very small organisations and relatively few larger ones.

This is the fourth annual Nonprofit Sector analysis prepared by Benefacts, using currently available data derived from more than 40 sources.

Use the report to learn more about Ireland’s Nonprofit Sector, its governance, people and funding.

View a recording of our report launch webinar which took place on Thursday 21 May 2020.

Nonprofit sector

Ireland’s nonprofit sector has 32,841 organisations. About 9,854 nonprofits are incorporated as companies, 3,948 are primary or secondary schools, 787 more are incorporated as friendly societies, cooperatives, industrial societies, political parties or charter bodies. The rest – including thousands of local, religious or sports organisations – are unincorporated associations.

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Governance

86,481 people serve in the governance of Irish nonprofits and charities.

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People

The Nonprofit Sector in Ireland has at least 165,075 paid employees. This number doesn’t include teachers – who are paid directly by Government – or unpaid volunteers.

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Funding

At €5.9bn, Government was the biggest single source of funding to the Nonprofit Sector in 2018. This was 8% of all current Government spending that year – but the profile varies a lot from sector to sector.

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Since our last report

In the twelve months since we prepared the 2019 report,

  • the number of registered charities grew by 845 (454 of these were schools)
  • 133 charities were de-registered by the Charities Regulator under S.40 of the Charities Act. 6 of these are still to be found on the Companies Register
  • the number of charities availing of tax relief increased from 7,131 to 7,184; 180 were removed from the list published by Revenue in the course of the year and 233 were added
  • the number of charities permitted to receive tax-efficient gifts shrunk from 2,462 to 2,438, with 55 removed from the list published by Revenue and 31 added in the course of the year
  • the number of sports bodies availing of tax relief grew from 2,548 to 2,597, with 15 removed from the list published by Revenue and 64 added in the course of the year
  • the number of non-profit companies grew with 540 new incorporations and 278 wind-ups

About the data

Benefacts Database of Irish Nonprofits is the source of all of the data and analysis on this website. We compile the database from more than 10 public sources, including the Companies Registration Office and the Charities Regulator, as well as 27 Public Participation Networks. We clean and aggregate it and re-publish the public data here as a free service.

 

Information about individual nonprofits is updated regularly as they file fresh information with public regulators. Our 2020 analysis is a macro level snapshot of the whole sector, prepared with data that was available at the end of Q1 in that year.  We will publish the next annual analysis at the end of Q1 2021.

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Many of you have told us about the importance of ensuring our comprehensive data on Ireland’s nonprofit sector remains freely and widely accessible.

We would like to know more about how access to Benefacts data supports your work. Please take five minutes to give us feedback on the impact of our data in your field.