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The team from Charity Navigator, the nation's largest independent charity evaluator and leading donor advocate, shares their thoughts on emerging nonprofit-sector issues and offers tips to better inform your intelligent giving decisions.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Charity Work is Big Business

Here are some interesting facts about the over 5,300 charities that Charity Navigator has rated.
  • In their most recent fiscal year, these charities generated approximately ­­$192 billion in total revenue. Total revenue generated by individual charities ranged from $6.28 billion (Harvard University), to $202,675 (Deputy Sheriffs' Fraternal Organization).
  • Of this $192 billion in total revenue, $155 billion came from the charities’ primary revenue sources. More than half of this primary revenue, some $89 billion, came from contributions from individuals, corporations, foundations, and government grants. Another $65 billion came from program service revenue, fees and contracts, and only $1 billion came from membership dues.
  • These same organizations reported spending $158 billion. Roughly 87%, or $137 billion, of these expenses were reported as program expenses. Administration expenses accounted for 9%, or $14 billion, and fundraising expenses accounted for the final 4%, or $7 billion.