Financial challenges experienced by South African non-profit organisations regarding CSR implementation

Nobuntu Sibisi, Anoosha Makka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to understand the financial challenges experienced by non-profit organisations (NPOs) when implementing corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives in South Africa. These challenges have a negative impact on NPOs because they impede the successful implementation of CSR projects. Design/methodology/approach: A qualitative research method and a purposive sampling strategy were used in this study. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 employees from three NPOs in South Africa from the education, enterprise development and health and social development sectors. Content analysis was used to examine the data. Findings: The findings revealed that NPOs in South Africa experience serious financial resource challenges, notably, overreliance on donor funding; difficulty in obtaining donor funding; limited donor funding available; intense competition from other non NPOs to secure donor funding; donors unwilling to fund operational costs and prescribing exactly how funds should be used; and donors signing non-binding contracts on the provision of funding. Research limitations/implications: The sample size of the study was small, namely, three NPOs from Gauteng Province (Johannesburg) in South Africa. Therefore, this study covered only one geographic area of South Africa and the findings cannot be generalised across other provinces of the country. Practical implications: The results of this study could have implications for donors and NPO employees involved in CSR activities in South Africa. Originality/value: This study bridges a gap in literature by revealing the key financial challenges experienced by South African NPOs in implementing CSR initiatives and the impact of those challenges on their CSR efforts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1089-1105
Number of pages17
JournalSocial Responsibility Journal
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2022


  • Competition for funding
  • Corporate social responsibility
  • Donor organisations
  • Financial constraints
  • Non-profit organisations
  • South Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Business,Management and Accounting
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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