JB Were Cause Report - Charities ‘doing more for less’

Posted on 13 October 2021

JB Were’s Cause Report is a go-to analysis of New Zealand’s charitable and broader for-purpose sector with a snapshot of the environment in which charities are operating. 

Key findings: 

  • Charities are on tight margins with small surpluses and increased expenses, which leaves little room to improve overall resilience and explore innovation 

  • International aid agencies are most dependent on ‘philanthropy’ which is defined here as public donations and government grants  

  • The trend of ‘middle market giving’ (eg small businesses) continues to fall, impacting on the budgets of charities 

  • Volunteerism continues to be of critical importance at a $4b pa value to the New Zealand GDP, an average 234,618 Kiwis volunteer each week and 9 in 10 organisations rely solely on a volunteer workforce 

  • The wage subsidies helped some, but not uniformly

  • As a whole, the sector is ‘doing even more for less’, with already thin operating margins and only modest reserves to draw on to meet any Covid triggered operating deficits