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Civil Economy for Manchester

In 2013, Macc published Manchester’s first “State of the Sector” report looking at the size, scope and contribution of the voluntary, community and faith sector to the city. Such a report had not been undertaken before and, for a first attempt, it showed a staggering picture of the sector’s role in the city:

  • 3,093 community and voluntary organisations, co-operatives and social enterprises in Manchester
  • Total income of the sector was £477 million
  • Medium and large organisations receive 95% of the total sector income
  • 1,987 organisations are micro (with an annual income under £10 thousand)
  • There are 94,300 volunteers in the sector
  • Volunteers give 370,000 hours each week
  • The contribution of volunteers in the sector is valued at £332 million each year
  • The sector employs 12,400 full time equivalent paid staff

Having gathered this information, we wanted to think about what the city would look like if it really built on this incredible asset working hard in communities all across Manchester and saw the sector playing a key role linking communities of disadvantage to economic opportunity. The Civil Economy approach is founded on three key principles:

  • Refocusing on how economic success is perceived around the experiences of people and communities within the economy
  • Creating an economy which works for all the people in it
  • Strong communities and social inclusion as inputs to and outcomes of economic and business success