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Australia’s charities deliver services, make grants, and perform a wide range of other activities to advance health, education, welfare, religious and other charitable causes. This report provides the most comprehensive record to date of charities registered with Australia’s charities regulator, the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC), in 2015.
Data in the report comes from all Australian charities registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) at the end of each charity's 2015 financial year. It uses the best and most recent data available for each charity. In most cases, data came from Annual Information Statements (AIS) provided for 2015, or from the 2014 or 2013 AIS where 2015 data was unavailable. Additional data was taken from the ACNC Register and from the Australian Business Register. Where no AIS data was available for a charity, data was estimated using information from the ACNC Register where possible. Estimation processes are described further below, and in Appendix B: Further methodological details.
The information builds a more accurate picture of charities’ characteristics, structure, activities, purpose and resources than previously available. It shows, for example, that charities had total income of $134.5 billion - equivalent to around 8.3% of GDP – and employed 1.2 million staff. The report establishes a firmer baseline for comparing Australian charities into the future. For the first time, it also uses a panel data set which shows the change among charities between 2014 and 2015. The findings attest to Australian charities’ diversity, and their rich social, economic and cultural contributions in Australia and internationally.