Tuesday, December 30, 2008

UK Philanthropists Step into the Gap

The Independent, a major UK newspaper, reported on December 27, 2008, that many of the top UK philanthropists have pledged to maintain or increase their giving to the many charities feeling the pinch of the economic crisis being experienced by all sectors -- public, private and nonprofit.  Below is a brief excerpt of the story:

Britain's leading philanthropists have pledged to bail out charities whose services have been hit by dramatic falls in public donations triggered by the recession.

Today The Independent reveals Britain's top philanthropists, a list of 30 industrialists, financiers, entrepreneurs and celebrities who have made a habit of giving their wealth away. We canvassed the charity sector and philanthropic organisations to find out who were this year's biggest givers.

Homeless projects, international aid, medical research and educational trusts will all benefit from more cash and greater support from this group of wealthy donors whose combined giving amounted to £2.3bn this year.

The pledge comes as charities call for more money to stop job losses and further cuts in their services.

In a bleak assessment of the situation, charity leaders have told the Government that they are facing a "double whammy", with funding being reduced at the very moment they are being asked for greater help by victims of the recession.

Corporate donations have fallen by 20 per cent, while legacies have been badly hit by the crashing property market. And as tax revenues are further reduced, charities expect government funding to the charity sector to be affected.

But Philanthropy UK, which advisers [sic] wealthy donors, says that many industrialists, financiers, entrepreneurs and celebrities intend to come to the aid of the charity sector by maintaining or increasing their funding. The London-based organisation says that "pledged gifts remain firm", with many philanthropists recognising that it is during this time of financial crisis that charities need their support most.

For the full story, please The Independent.



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