INDIANAPOLIS – The recession that hit in 2008 has taken a major toll on many Americans. And when people struggle just to pay their mortgage and car loans, they become less concerned with giving their money away, no matter how good the cause. The good news? American philanthropy is finally beginning to increase, gradually making its way back to the 2007 high mark before the recession.
Each year, the Giving USA Foundation analysts partner with the Center of Philanthropy at Indiana University to determine just how much America gives, and the 2012 results look promising. According to the researchers, the USA gave over $312 billion, increasing 1.5% from the year before and marking the second year in a row donation totals have increased. Although we haven’t yet reached the $344 billion high from 2007, the rise is promising. It means that as people begin to feel more financially secure, they begin to also feel more comfortable donating to charity.
Which group donated the most? The analysts derived their numbers from all U.S. donations—money coming from individuals, corporations, bequests, and foundations—and found that donations from individuals made up a whopping 73% of all the giving in 2012. Corporations, bequests, and foundations followed, respectively. These statistics are also promising because it means that money given is making a big impact. Individual donations may seem small, but they become part of something much greater.
– Katie Brockman