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Third Sector Index Q1 2016

NI Third Sector Confident Despite Decreases in Government Funding

A new survey of Third sector leaders was launched on Monday 4 April 2016. Published by Ulster Bank & CO3, the survey reveals that Third sector leaders are confident about their prospects despite a challenging environment and significant decreases in government funding.

Findings from the Ulster Bank & CO3 3rd Sector Index included;

  • 30 percent of Third sector leaders saw government funding received by their organisation fall in the last quarter, with a further 54 percent experiencing no change (i.e. a real-terms decline)
  • 78 percent of respondents categorised the environment in which their organisation is operating as very or quite challenging
  • 50 percent expect the Northern Ireland economy to worsen during 2016
  • Almost half of those surveyed expect their organisation’s turnover to increase in the next 12 months, with less than one in five expecting turnover to fall
  • Almost three-quarters say that their organisation saw the number of employees (full time equivalents) increase (26 percent) or stay the same (54 percent) in the last quarter
  • Over 80 percent regard their organisation’s strategic ability to operate in the current environment as very good or quite good
  • The forthcoming EU Referendum was amongst the biggest concerns for the sector with more than 40 percent of Northern Ireland’s third sector leaders identifying this as something that they are very concerned about, and a further 36 percent expressing moderate concern
  • However, only 13 percent see the planned introduction of the UK national living wage as something that will have a large negative impact on their organisation. Over half expect the new policy to have no impact, and 14 percent expect the impact to be positive


Click to view the full Ulster Bank & CO3 3rd Sector Index.

Click to download the 3rd Sector Index Infographic.