The role of the voluntary sector and social action in the economy: two dimensions of social life as measured in the national accounts
Mélanie Vanderschelden, division Synthèse générale des comptes, Insee
Non-profit institutions serving households employed 900,000 people in 2008, representing 3% of total employment. They paid €23 billion in compensation and purchased nearly €17 billion of goods and services, including investment spending. In the process, they produced €40 billion in services, which they distributed free or nearly free of charge. One-half of the services were in the educational and recreational sphere; the other half concerned assistance to the disabled and people in difficulty. More generally, however, “production of social action” denotes assistance to all vulnerable categories. In France, it is valued at €62 billion, for it is also provided by other economic players and covers other groups, notably the elderly. The beneficiaries-whether accommodated in institutions, looked after during the day, or cared for at home-finance 30% of the cost of social action.