|Title:||United States changes in charitable giving by source in dollars and percent change for the period 2008 to 2009, 2009 to 2010, and cumulative for the period 2008 to 2010|
|Source:||The Non-profit Times|
Start of full article - but without data
Changes in giving by source 2008-2009 and 2009-2010
and 2008-2010 cumulative
(in current dollars)
2008-2010, 2008-2009 2009-2010 Cumulative *
Total -X.X% X.X% -X.X%
Individual -X.X% X.X% -X.X%
Bequest -XX.X% XX.X% -XX.X%
Foundation -X.X% -X.X% -X.X%
Corporate XX.X% XX.X% XX.X%
Percentage change from previous year
* The two-year change is calculated separately and is not the sum of
the changes in the two years.
Note: Table made from bar graph.
The modest improvement in the U.S. economy during 2010 seemed to make for a modest recovery for charitable giving. Donations during and after the recession, however, plummeted far more than originally expected, by X.X percent in 2009.
Overall giving in the United States nudged upward about X.X percent last year, according to initial estimates released June XX. The 2010 estimate of $XXX.XX billion is an increase of X.X percent, when adjusted for inflation, compared to the 2009 figure.
Last year, Giving USA reported $XXX.XX billion in charitable giving for 2009, down a little more than X percent from 2008. That number is revised to $XXX.X billion, making for a X.X-percent dip. It was only the second year that total giving had not increased in current dollars since Giving USA started tracking philanthropy in 1956. The only other time was 1987.
Overall giving was revised downward even more for 2009 and 2008 but observers still were hopeful about the increase last year, after a combined drop of more than XX percent the past two years.
"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," said Patrick Rooney, Ph.D., executive director of the Center on Philanthropy (COP) in Indianapolis, Ind. Adjusted for inflation, total giving exceeded $XXX billion annually for the past decade, and surpassed $XXX billion in six of the past seven years, he said.
Giving USA, a publication of Giving USA Foundation[TM] researched and written by the Center on Philanthropy in Indianapolis, Ind., was released by the Giving Institute. It's the first comprehensive look at overall charitable giving in the United States for 2010. Giving USA has been tracking charitable giving since 1956, calculating total giving by about XX million American households, X to X.X million corporations, some XXX,XXX estates and about XX,XXX foundations.
"People are starting to give a bit more, give larger gifts, and probably give to more organizations. That's good news in this overall compilation of data," said Edith Falk, chair, Giving USA Foundation, and chair and CEO of Chicago-based consulting firm, Campbell & Company. "The positive news is that as the economy is recovering, so is philanthropy," she said.
"It seems like we've gone quite a ways back in the giving and it's going to take us a long time to recover, unless the economy takes a giant step forward," said Elizabeth Boris, director of the Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy at The Urban Institute in Washington, D.C. She expressed some concern about the significant revision to last year's data. "It makes me a bit concerned about talking about $XXX billion in 2009; you have to go all the way back to 2003 or 2004 to see numbers like that," she said.
GIVING BY SECTOR
Not only were the estimates in total dollars off, but where the money was going was also askew. During the depths of the recession, many observers warned that donors would focus giving more on people's basic needs instead of things such as the arts and humanities. But among the surprises in the latest estimates was that the arts, culture and humanities subsector actually experienced a jump of X.X percent (X.X percent adjusted for inflation). The $XX.XX billion given to the arts made up X percent of overall giving.
Human services barely nudged past the previous year, despite more than $X billion in response to the January 2010 Haiti earthquake. Giving in response to Haiti didn't have quite the same impact on giving as previous disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina in 2005 or the Asian tsunami in 2004, said Rooney, but it did account for $X.XX billion (about X.X percent of total giving). About three-quarters of the total, or $X.XX billion, went to human services and yet the subsector was nearly unchanged from 2009, up only X.X percent (down X.X percent when adjusted for inflation), to $XX.XX billion. The other roughly XX percent of Haiti giving, about $XXX million, went to international affairs.
"Somehow the giving growth that's occurring isn't flowing into human services, and to me, that's a little troubling," said Lester Salamon, director of the Center for Civil Society Studies at Johns Hopkins Institute for Policy Studies in Baltimore, Md. The common public perception is that charitable giving is mostly made up of human service providers, but in reality, he said it's only a small portion, roughly XX percent.
Going to pre-recession data from 2007, Salamon said giving to human services is down XX percent in absolute terms, even more if adjusted for inflation while giving to the arts over that period is down a more modest X percent. "Arts and culture is clawing its way back, and I expect next year to be rosier for them," given the stock market rebound since 2009.
It's hard to tell from the data whether those are the same dollars moving from one sector to another but "certainly anecdotally, we're hearing that people are focusing their giving more, in support of human services," said Falk.
"Giving to education and the arts, those grew fairly rapidly, people seem to be returning to their pre-Recession trends fairly quickly into the recovery," said Rooney. "When I think about this - and maybe it's argumentative--I think about arts and public society-benefit, education, these are organizations that generally have well organized development offices, so they're probably better able to go into the field and fundraise as the economy recovers," he said.
"It's hard to say in any definitive way why there's a stronger showing than any other sector," said Falk, but did point to some large gifts and capital campaigns at major art institutions. It also could be that high net-worth individuals - whom Falk said were "just as skittish as the rest of us in holding back their philanthropy" in the depths of the recession--are the ones that have stepped forward more quickly in their giving.
The arts subsector received the largest gift pledge last year: $XXX million worth of art and furniture to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Without that pledge, giving to the arts would have been closer to an even $XX billion, and "you find a different portrait of the arts community," said Randy Cohen, vice president of research and policy at Americans for the Arts in Washington, D.C. "A more typical experience is arts organizations are really struggling to sustain their private sector giving," Cohen said, rather than X percent growth. The stock market rebound in 2010 showed some promise, he added, which might have contributed somewhat to the increase.
"It's going to take a couple years for all the data to finally shake out. This has been an extraordinary cycle that we're still going through," Cohen said.
Of the nine subsectors in the report, only environment/animals recorded an actual percentage decrease in giving. However, when giving is adjusted for inflation, four of the nine experienced a decline.
Pieces of the charitable pie that go to specific subsectors didn't change all that much. More than $XXX billion went to religion, which accounted for XX percent of the total, up from XX percent last year. Still, adjusted for inflation, giving to religion was essentially flat; up X.X percent, but down X.X percent when adjusted for inflation.
Individual giving and religious giving reflects the economy, Boris said, and likely indicates that lower-income households haven't yet rebounded.
"While we are happy that charitable giving is back up, it is going to take a while to get back to 2008 levels," said the Rev. Dr. Michael Kinnamon, general secretary for the Washington, D.C.-based National Council of Churches (NCC), with the new data confirming what they've heard from affiliate churches.
When observing giving trends from local churches, Kinnamon has seen more contributions going to local chapters as opposed to denominational structures. "Even for causes like the outpouring of support we saw following the earthquakes in Haiti, congregations were more likely to donate to places where they'd see their impact a little more directly," he said.
The subsector with the largest increase in giving, by far, was international affairs, up XX.X percent (XX.X percent adjusted for inflation) to $XX.XX billion. International affairs has been growing in recent years, with some of the increases attributable to the billions doled out by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
As a result of appreciated assets going to donor-advised funds, the public-society benefit subsector experienced a X.X-percent jump in giving (up X.X percent inflation adjusted), to $XX.XX billion.
Giving to grantmaking foundations makes up the second biggest piece of the charitable pie, at XX percent, or $XX billion. Giving was up almost X percent, but when adjusted for inflation was up only X.X percent.
Based on predictions from constituents, Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) President John Lippincott said he was "pleasantly unsurprised" by the X.X-percent increase in inflation-adjusted giving to education. It is typically the second largest recipient of giving, docking in this year at $XX.XX billion, or XX percent of all giving.
"There is no question that the strongest correlation in giving is from the GDP and/or stock market," said Lippincott. "The fact that we have a strong upturn in the market from the recession, probably makes up for such a large increase."
Donors are putting their money toward current gifts as opposed to capital purposes, according to Lippincott. Acknowledging that donors wish to see more of the direct influence of their donations, he contended that this different contribution model also had to deal with the still-struggling economy.
"Even before the recession, donors wanted to know the direct impact of their gifts," said Lippincott. "Gifts are coming more in as restricted gifts and supporters have become interested in staying in touch with the organization. Because of the downturned value of endowments, you can see why people are gravitating more towards current gifts and assisting in student financial aid," he said.
Successful education institutions during this period did not stop investing in their fundraising efforts, said Lippincott. "Our sense is that higher education has slowed down hiring but have retained their fundraising infrastructure," he said. It also helps that donors to educational institutions tend to be lifetime supporters rather than episodic givers, which Lippincott said helps dampen a downturn and accelerate the upturn.
Corporate giving increased to an estimated $XX.XX billion up XX.X percent in current dollars and X.X percent in inflation-adjusted dollars. "We are really encouraged by this increase in giving," said Alison Rose, manager of standards and measurements for the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP) in New York City. "From Giving USA and our own data, we've seen XX percent of companies giving more than they did prior to the downturn," she said.
The increase in corporate giving was threefold, according to Rose: increased interest in charitable causes following economic resurgence; additional trading for disaster relief for situations like the earthquake in Haiti, and still seeing the impacts from mergers and acquisitions, extending former giving levels.
Corporate giving comes mostly through direct cash, with some through foundations, and almost XX percent from in-kind donations, according to CECP.
Bequests are among the more volatile sources of giving in the report, Rooney said. Since estates may not be settled until a year or two after a person's death, it's difficult to forecast. Also, some estates go unrecorded because they aren't large enough to file with the IRS and in 2010, the estate tax expired and so no estates were required to file. After a fairly large jump in bequests two years ago, followed by a fairly large decline, Rooney anticipates that this year's figures are more a return to the long-term trend.
RELATED ARTICLE: when $XXX billion really isn't $XXX billion.
BY MARK HRYWNA