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Charities’ data ‘how-to’ guide
Learn how to search, sort and group charities’ data by: activity, beneficiaries, location, staffing, assets, expenditure and more.
This tool can provide you with information and a surprising range of insights into the charitable sector in New Zealand. The search criteria are very broad, so the possible searches are virtually limitless.
Charities’ data can allow you to answer questions like
And so much more.
Read on to find out how.
To start you can Search the Register.
This will give you an idea of all the information captured in the data and all the data fields you can (later) group and sort. The summary includes a link to the charity’s annual return which provides all the financial data.
Let’s get started.
Once you are in Search the Register, click Advanced Search in the right column of this website. Here’s where you can search all the information held on the Charities Register and bring back a set of results. There are 3 options on this page.
First we’ll conduct a search under ‘Charity’.
Advanced Search allows you to refine and/or extend your search in multiple ways. Clicking the plus button the means you are asking the data an additional question. The first menu you’ll see controls whether results match all of the criteria to be returned, or whether results need only match one of them. This function applies to financial searches as well.
The brackets button enables you to group search criteria and refine and expand it as you wish.
These are all the column heading sets that will be shown in the file your search will return. If all are left ticked, it will mean there will be a lot of columns on the spreadsheet – so it can pay to untick any you don’t think you’ll need.
Results are downloaded through a file which will open in most spreadsheet programs. Once you have the search results in a spreadsheet format you can sift and sort according to what you’re looking for.
Note: Actual results will show more columns. We have removed several columns for the purposes of this guide.
There are a number of financial information categories that you can search.
For example, you may be interested in finding out about the asset base of charities in a certain sector or by region. Or, you may want to explore income sources for all charities. There’s an extensive array of searches available. Here’s one for you to try.
Note – This is just one example of how to do a financial search. Using the search menu you could for example search the data by assets, income, expenditure, liabilities and so on.
Once you have the search results in a spreadsheet format you can sift and sort. For example, you can sort columns to show which charities have the largest asset base or the highest expenditure and so on.
Note: Actual results will show more columns.
The top row will show all the information about charities in your search plus all their financial information.
This search provides information about officers associated with charities.
You can search on either the details about the officers themselves, by typing their name into the free field and searching under ‘full name’ or you can search officers by charity, sector, area of operation, and so on.
You may want to refine your search by region or town. The regions used in the data (when you select areas of operation) are based on Statistics NZ region definitions. These may differ to regional boundaries set by, for example Local Councils or District Health Boards.
There are several ways to address this.
Use the street address city to refine the search. This will give you a free field to enter city or town.
Select postcode is field and enter postcode (these are available through the New Zealand Post website(external link))
If you have multiple postcodes, sort results by post code in your spreadsheet once you have downloaded the search results.
Mix & mash is a term used by software and web developers that refers to taking different data sets and literally mixing them together. It’s been said that the true ‘gold’ in data information comes when it’s ‘mashed’ with another data set.
We’ve released an Application Programming Interface (API) which means web and software developers can access this data and mash it with other sets. If you’re part of an organisation that holds data, let your IT Team know about the Charities’ Data API. For additional Government data sets check out www.data.govt.nz(external link).