Bilbao City

There are 3,500 active third sector organizations. This is the distribution: 57% (2,000 firms) has its headquarters in Bizkaia Province (of which Bilbao is the capital city and in which the 53.31% of the Bizkaian social institutions are concentrated), 29% is located in Gipuzkoa Province and the rest, 14% is located in Araba Province (500). 

Concerning the employment in figures, the third sector in the Basque Country employs around 36,000 people that provide a paid work (part time and full time work) and it articulates the participation of around 125,000 volunteers.

In 2013, the Basque economic volume of the sector was of 1,451 million euros, which is equivalent to 2.2% of GDP of the Basque Country. 

Recent steps on Social Economy: Basque Parliament has recently adopted the law that unifies in a same standard the operation and principles of non-profit organisations working in the third sector Social (3,500 organisations) - working on the promotion of social solidarity, as well as on the promotion of social participation of people, social rights inclusion and social cohesion.

In this sense, third Social Sector of the Basque country now has a legal framework that, among other things, regulates its participation in the design of social policies that the Basque institutions shall implement in the next few years.

According to the ''White Paper'' of the Third Sector located in the Basque Country - which is a research done by the Observatory of Bizkaia- the number of users of the services provided by social entities has been increased in the last three years, as well as the number of people who work in this field (especially those related to people in situation or risk of vulnerability and exclusion). This increase is related to the social impact generating by the economic crisis.

Regarding Bilbao City Hall Government Plans related to the third sector, these point to the collaboration with the third sector in terms of :

- Assignment for rent of municipal housing entities to the third sector, in order to host vulnerable communities.

- Development and maintenance of a collaborative model between the social initiative and the public administration.

- Social Affairs Municipal Committee.

Concerning the cooperation with other organisations, Bilbao City highlight the cooperation with the university, in which the sharing of people and resources is a reality. In fact, the Third Sector and the university develop jointly research activities, awareness activities and they exchange know how, as well as the academic education.