How this report is complied
An existing dataset acquired from the Benefacts legacy website was used to select the total sample of this year’s report. Once the organisations in the dataset were split into their component strata (of twelve subsectors, according to the Johns Hopkins International Classification of Nonprofit Organisations), listed organisations were selected for inclusion using stratified, random sampling, while organisations with abridged accounts were excluded. Organisations selected were then checked for available financial information and obtained from the Charities Regulator’s charities register, an online database.
A sample of 1,179 organisations was selected, representing 3.4% of the total population in the sector. When extrapolated, the relative size of each subsector in the sample reflects that of the population. In the initial sample, some organisations had abridged or missing accounts for 2020. Those organisations were substituted with similarly-sized organisations with available financial information.
Extracting key data on fundraised income and cost is still very challenging. Annual accounts were not compiled with the intention of inclusion in this report’s analysis, and in many cases, very limited information on fundraising is provided. While organisations are increasingly including fundraised income as a line item in accounts under ‘donations’, many organisations present income in a more aggregate format or combine sources of funding (e.g. ‘income from Events and Corporate Donations’) or subsume fundraised income under another heading.