The Spanish third sector grew its total income by 10.5% in 2021, but the sector is still marginally smaller than it was 10 years ago.
This is according to a new report which also shows that the sector’s public funding has dropped significantly over the past decade, with nonprofits increasingly creating their own income.
The Third Sector Barometer is published by Plataforma de ONG de Acción Social, a national organisation which supports the country’s nonprofit sector. The Barómetro is based on a survey of 703 nonprofits across Spain.
Total income for the sector in 2021 was €17.4bn, up from €15.8bn in 2020. Back in 2010, it was slightly higher at €17.5bn, before it dropped to just €14.5bn in 2013. Those figures are not adjusted for inflation.
The report says that around a fifth of the sector’s total income goes to three major NGOs: Cáritas, the Red Cross and ONCE (the Spanish National Organisation of Blind People).
Income sources change
In 2010, 60% of the sector’s income was from public funding, 18% came from private giving (individuals, private foundations and businesses) and 22% from income generated directly by organisations’ operations.
At this time, the vast majority of nonprofits (93%) received private funding – by 2021, that figure dropped to 73%.
For 2021, public funding is 47% of total sector income. Private giving has increased slightly to 22% of the total, while generated income has grown to 31% of the total.
During 2021, 49% of organisations recorded a surplus, while 28% broke even and 24% recorded a deficit in their annual account.
Spanish nonprofits are getting smaller, the Barómetro shows – in 2010, 29% of them had five or fewer staff. In 2021, it is 48%. The proportion having 50 or more staff has gone from 23% in 2010, to 12% in the latest year.
The Barómetro says that the sector has 528,220 workers, down from a peak of 644,979 in 2013.
The sector today accounts for 3% of all salaried workers in the country, and 80% of the sector’s workforce is female. Women make up 60% of nonprofit organisations’ governing bodies, compared with 33% of boards in the private sector.
Alongside the quantitative data, the report outlines three large-scale opportunities which the researchers see as critical to Spanish society. These are areas in which the third sector can contribute significantly, potentially by working in collaboration with other sectors.
The first is technology-based innovation to support independent living, regardless of an individual’s needs, health or age. The second is supporting the transition from a linear to a circular economy, which involves inclusive employment opportunities and moves away from carbon-intensive industry. The last is harnessing and channelling the goodwill and innovation of the population as a whole, in particular with relation to digital capabilities, in order to create a more resilient society.
Picture by Julien Troumeur on Pixabay
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