Charitable Giving in a Recession

A new report, based on the Center on Wealth and Philanthropy‘s Individual Giving Model (IGM), estimates that individual charitable giving was down 4.9% percent in 2009. The model incorporates measures of household net worth and income, and as such provides an informative picture of household economics during the recession. The report’s authors also point out the model has certain limitations — namely that it fails to account for psychological and social factors that affect giving: “On the positive side, people may give more because they empathize with those with increased need in a bad economy. On the negative side, people may give less because they are anxious about their own, their families’ and perhaps their workers’ financial well-being.” [%comments]


However, there is a new report about how the recession is related to the fall in production of reports about things like these. It seems that the people who did this kind of reports were fired :(.


One little change that would tweak the profits of some very profitable companies could make a difference for a lot of people, I think.

I have proposed several times that the large credit card banks allow contributions to approved charitable organizations to have ZERO interest.

Why wouldn't that be a good idea? I mean, aren't we making it EASIER for people to give...and at a time when giving is so very needed?

It's just GREED. They make millions--even billions--every quarter, and yet they could truly be a "blessing" to many people.

Consider how much more might have been given if a person could have donated to Haiti at zero interest.

No, I don't necessarily mean zero interest for an unlimited time, but what about for a year? Or what have you. Just make it easier for people to do the good and right thing.

pete veilleux

by 'giving', do you mean monetary contributions? i have not been able to give monetarily the same amounts as before, but i've been volunteering a lot more time, as are many friends of mine.

Howard Freeman

I usually rely on the great research done by this Center.

However, Giving USA found that individual giving was down only 0.4% last year, compared to a 2.6% decrease overall (foundation grantmaking was markedly down). Further, giving to human services, health and international aid & relief was up in 2009 over 2008.

See their free download: