State Profile – Virginia

About This Profile

Across the United States, the charitable sector generates incredible impact on both communities and economies. This profile is a snapshot of major statistics about Virginia’s charitable community. It’s designed to give you a broad sense of the scale and diversity of nonprofits, foundations, and charities across the state. A downloadable PDF version is available above.


Number of Virginia Nonprofit Organizations

  • All nonprofit organizations: 37,860
  • 501(c)(3) Public Charities (includes some religious organizations): 26,283
  • 501(c)(3) Private and Public Foundations: 1,827
  • Other 501(c) Nonprofit Organizations*: 9,750

* includes civic leagues, chamber of commerce, veterans organizations, etc


Economic Impact of the Virginia Nonprofit Sector

  • Employs 233,100 – over 8% of the state’s workforce
  • Generates over $63 billion in annual revenues
  • Holds assets of almost $153 billion
  • Virginia foundations annually give over $656 million
  • Virginians give over $5.6 billion to charity each year, representing 2.85 percent of household income

Public Charities and Foundations Benefit Virginia Communities

Deliver vital community services
Since 1923, Commonwealth Catholic Charities has offered programs to help Virginia’s neediest individuals. Among the more than 40,000 people served per year, the organization helped 72 infants and children find their forever homes through adoption and secured stable foster families for another 233, including refugees and children with adverse backgrounds.

Give voice to the people they serve
A national organization based in Arlington, Communities In Schools empowers over 1.5 million students in 25 states and D.C. to achieve academic success. The CIS model leverages the most effective strategies in order to provide the resources and networks students need to stay in school, delivering a 93 percent graduation rate for students in their programs.

Contribute to vibrant communities
The Nature Conservancy has sought to protect Virginia wildlife for over 50 years. Projects include improving water quality in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, and protecting the barrier islands that comprise the Virginia Coast Reserve.

Support  the most vulnerable globally
The National Organization for Youth Safety (NOYS) started out with a focus on traffic safety but in 2005, it incorporated as a nonprofit and expanded its program and youth advocacy work to also address other health and safety issues, such as injury prevention, substance abuse prevention, and violence prevention.



Note: The “nonprofit sector” encompasses organizations that are defined as tax-exempt under section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code. This includes both public charities and private foundations [501(c)(3)] and other nonprofits such as civic league organizations [501(c)(4)]. Exceptions are noted when relevant.

Employment Information
Best estimate based on available data from the following sources:

Number of nonprofit employees: Holding the Fort: Nonprofit Employment During a Decade of Turmoil, Lester Salamon and S.Wojciech Sokolowski, Stephanie L. Geller, Nonprofit Employment Bulletin #39, Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies, 2012 {Data is 2010, page 3}

Number of Nonprofits
Urban Institute, National Center for Charitable Statistics, State Summary reports  {Data are 2013}

Asset and Revenues
Urban Institute, National Center for Charitable Statistics, “Registered Nonprofit Organizations by State (BMF 12/2015)
{Data are 2015}

Foundation Giving
The Foundation Center, FC Stats: “Foundation Stats: Total Grantmaking Foundations” {Data are 2013}

Individual Giving
How America Gives, 2014. The Chronicle of Philanthropy. {Data are 2012}

Nonprofit Examples:

Updated: October 2016


Resource Types: Fact Sheet