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Philanthropist Resources: Strategic philanthropy

 A recent report by the Department of Social Development, titled The 2015/16 State of South African Registered Non-profit Organisations, collates insight from the National NPO Database to provide a comprehensive overview of the non-profit landscape in South Africa. According to this report, by the end of March 2016, there were 153 677 registered organisations: a 12.6% increase from the previous financial year, and an 80% increase over five years. Social services was the largest development sector in 2015/16 (48%), followed by development and housing (18%), religion (15%), education and research (6%), culture and recreation (6%), health (3%), business and professional associations and unions (2%), environment (1%) and law, advocacy and politics (1%). 

Source: Trialogue Business in Society Handbook 2017

Non-profit organisations, also referred to as non-governmental organisations, encapsulate a broad range of interests, from faith-based, community and charity organisations, to social and sports clubs, all contributing to the social fabric of South Africa. The Non-profit Organisations Act 71 of 1997 (the NPO Act), which regulates standards of accountability, transparency and governance for NPOs, defines an NPO as a trust, company or other association of persons that is established for a public purpose and does not operate at a profit (i.e. its income and property are not distributable to its members or office bearers, except as reasonable compensation for services rendered.

Read more: Overview of non-profit organisations in South Africa

In 2018, 56% of non-profit organisations (NPOs) surveyed by Trialogue reported having risk management plans in place, while 53% of companies said that it was a prerequisite for NPOs to access funding. These are relatively low rates, despite the vast number of risks that can hinder effective delivery of social impact in the development sector – including logistical challenges, fraud, reputational risk, corruption, arson, war, political obstacles, procurement issues, natural disasters and more. Nozuko Nkumanda of Social Impact Partners shares how social impact organisations and donors can navigate these risks.

Read more: Risk Management in Development