Australia's community service providers spent $25.2 billion on direct services in 2008-09, according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), and just over half of this expenditure was by Not for Profit organisations.
Commonwealth, state and territory government organisations contributed $3.8 billion directly and also provided a further $9.5 billion in funding and payments to private organisations and self-employed contractors.
In addition community service providers spent a further $4.0 billion on related or overhead community assistance.
The figures show that residential care was the largest area of direct expenditure, with organisations spending $12.6 billion on activities such as aged and disabled care, as well as transitional accommodation.
A total of $5.9 billion was spent on personal and social support activities, and $3.8 billion on child care.
The ABS says its figures show that women dominate the community services sector.
At the end of June 2009 there were nearly 11,000 businesses and organisations involved in the provision of community services. These included 5,809 Not for Profit organisations, 4,638 'for profit' organisations, and 520 government organisations.
Over half a million people were employed by organisations providing community services, 78% of whom were female. Most employees were aged between 26 and 46 years and over 42% were employed on a permanent part time basis.
There were 325,440 volunteers assisting community services organisations during 2008-09, providing 78 hours of voluntary services on average.
The latest document called Community Services, Australia 2008-09 (cat. no 8696.0) can be downloaded from the ABS website at www.abs.gov.au