Salford State of the VCSE Sector

The State of the Sector research was conducted across Salford and Greater using electronic surveys and online focus groups during 2020. This report is the first time that the research was successfully completed across every local authority with Greater Manchester but in Salford, the research has been done every three years. (2010, 2013 and 2017).

State of the Sector is a partnership piece of research commissioned by Salford CVS working with stakeholders across Greater Manchester and the University of Salford. The key objective of the research was to provide a comprehensive overview of the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE*) Sector both within the city of Salford and Greater Manchester as a whole.

The data, insight and concluding evidence in the report are clear: the VCSE sector makes a significant contribution within localities and to our city-region - addressing needs, reducing hardship, supporting those in crisis, promoting aspiration and driving social value. The full report also explores a range of external factors and their impact on the sector including the Covid-19 pandemic, Brexit as well as Inequalities and Discrimination.

Headline findings

  • 1,665 voluntary organisations, community groups and social enterprises making a difference in Salford
  • 68% are micro organisations, with an annual income under £10,000
  • 17% of the sector identify as being a social enterprise 
  • The top four areas of work across Salford were Wellbeing, Health & Social Care; Community Development; Physical Activity and Sport; and Economic Wellbeing
  • Our organisations are rooted in place (43%) indicated that they worked within specific neighbourhoods and communities across Salford and 61% across the city. 
  • The total income of the sector in 2019/2020 was calculated at £1.492 million
  • 84% of organisations have at least one source of non-public sector funds, bringing significant value to Salford's economy
  • 53% of organisations have used their reserves in the past 12 months
  • 61,828 volunteers (including committee/board members), giving 210,299 hours each week - a significant increase from 2017. This bounce is largely attributable to COVID-19 response work and we would expect this to slowly drop away in the future.
  • Volunteer time in Salford is conservatively valued at £104 million per annum (based on the real Living Wage of £9.50 per hour) - but in reality, is likely to be much higher.
  • 29,358 volunteers in micro organisations provide 149,607 hours per week, representing 71% of the total hours of volunteers in the Salford VCSE sector.
  • 78% of organisations that employ staff indicated that they paid the real Living Wage to their employees (the rate set by The Living Wage Foundation).
  • 87% of VCSE organisations have had some direct dealings with other VCSE organisations across Salford. 87% with Salford City Council and 68% with private businesses.

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*When we talk about the VCSE Sector we mean voluntary organisations, community groups, the community work of faith groups, and those social enterprises and community interest companies where there is a wider accountability to the public via a board of trustees or a membership and profits will be reinvested in their social purpose.

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Salford CVS & Volunteer Centre
Registered address 
The Old Town Hall 
5 Irwell Place 
Salford, M30 0FN

Tel: 0161 787 7795 


Salford CVS is the city-wide infrastructure organisation for the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector; providing specialist information, advice, development support and opportunities for influence and collaboration.

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