The largest 100 charities by income achieved a combined growth in income in the year to March 2011, despite operating in difficulty economic conditions. According to an annual review of the Charity 100 Index, published in April's Charity Finance magazine and online at Civilsociety.co.uk, the top 100 charities raised £11.4 billion, an increase of £355.5 million on the previous year.
Indeed, following a drop in 2009, the Index, which has been published since 1996, is now at a record high.
• Nuffield Health retains the top position on the Index for the eighth successive year, having increased its income by 3% to £562.7m.
• Alternative Futures, UK Committee for Unicef and Islamic Relief Worldwide, which all achieved risen up the Index by 24, 17 and 15 places respectively.
• Crime Reduction Initiatives (CRI), has entered the Index for the first time: two years ago its income grew by 35%, and last year by a further 20%.
To qualify for listing in the Index, charities now need to have an income of £49.7 million, up 8% from £45.8 million the previous year.
As well as Crime Reduction Initiatives, new members of the Index include Nursing and Midwifery Council, Merlin, Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC), and Turning Point.
Andrew Hind, editor of Charity Finance, welcomed the positive findings of the Index, but noted that it "is ultimately reflective of an ability, both past and future, to consistently deliver high quality services and solutions".
He added that "this good news should not disguise the fact that, for thousands of smaller charities who do unique and specialist work, the picture on income is not so rosy."
The Charity 100 Index and its partner Charity 250 Index are published by Charity Finance. Charities' relative positions in the ranking are based on a rolling average of its income for the last three years up to and including 31 March 2011.