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Education and training charities top new registrations

Education and training charities top new registrations
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Education and training charities top new registrations

Governance | Jonathan Last | 21 May 2012

The Charity Commission has today revealed that charities with educational and training purposes make up more than half of all organisations joining its register.

The sector regulator has published new research by way of its second registration bulletin, More than just a Number: Themes and trends in charity registrations (Issue 2), which highlights trends in charity registrations during the six months to March 2012.

Fifty-seven per cent of new charities listed their charitable purpose as ‘education and training’, following a trend set in the Commission’s first bulletin, which covered the period of April to September 2011. The next largest category was charities with ‘general charitable purposes’, making up 33 per cent. A total of 2,615 organisations were registered during the period in question, consistent with levels of new registrations during the previous six months.

The bulletin recognises ‘new’ charities as being all those which are newly registered, this includes both brand new organisations and existing ones that were previously exempt from registration. Charities that re-registered during the period (1 October 2011 to 31 March 2012) with the same registration number have been excluded from the facts and figures.

Over a third of the newly-registered organisations (972 in total) provided their gross annual income as recorded in their latest set of published accounts, a combined total of £293,198,628. The average (mean) income of these 972 charities is £301,645.

Nearly 60 per cent of the newly-registered charities are service providers, whilst more than a third (36 per cent) provide advocacy, advice, and information. Three per cent reported their income to be above £1m, with 73 per cent declaring an income of below £100,000.

Younger trustees

Alongside figures and statistics, the bulletin highlights trends and themes in the voluntary sector: “Whilst there is no such thing as a ‘typical’ charity, new or otherwise, the common characteristics of organisations joining the register today are: being small, working at a local level, working in the field of education and training, and delivering services to a wide range of people,” the Commission reports. 

The Commission further speculates that “it remains to be seen whether this profile will change much in [the] future as charities continue to respond to social, environmental and economic change.”

The document also reveals that the average age of the trustees of newly-registered charities is slightly lower than the age of trustees across the sector as a whole – 51, as opposed to 57.

Previous research by the Charity Commission (as well as a report by Governance magazine) revealed that young people are underrepresented on charity boards.

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