June 20, 2011
Charitable Giving Increased By Only 2.1 Percent in 2010
A new report prepared by Giving USA Foundation and the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University found that Americans gave $291 billion to charity in 2010, 4 percent more than they gave in 2009 but more than 6 percent below the all time record set in 2007. After adjusting for inflation, though, giving increased by only 2.1 percent. Click here for the report's executive summary, also available for free online: Download GivingUSA_2011_ExecSummary_Print; the entire report is available for $75.00. A Reuters report states:
Revised estimates by the study, which started in 1956, showed that during the financial crisis giving fell more than $10 billion in 2008 to $299.8 billion and then dropped more than 6 percent in 2009 to $280.3 billion. Patrick Rooney, executive director of the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, said that giving in 2010 grew by 2.1 percent after adjusting for inflation. "But the sobering reality is that many nonprofits are still hurting, and if giving continues to grow at that rate, it will take five to six more years just to return to the level of giving we saw before the Great Recession," he said. The study estimates the giving by about 75 million households, up to 1.5 million corporations, an estimated 120,000 estates and about 77,000 foundations. That money goes to more than 1.2 million registered charities and some 350,000 American religious congregations. Individual giving rose by 2.7 percent in 2010 to $211.7 billion, charitable bequests soared nearly 19 percent to $22.8 billion, foundation giving remained unchanged at $41 billion and corporate giving rose more than 10 percent to $15 billion. Edith Falk, chairwoman of the Giving USA Foundation, a philanthropic research group, said that while giving had started to rebound, the gains "suggest philanthropy is likely in for slow growth over the next several years" and changes in donor behavior during the recession are likely here to stay.
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