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Charity Giving Goes Up

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The 58th annual report revealed Americans donated an estimated $316.23 billion to charity causes in 2012, a 3.5 per cent increase from the previous year...

Giving by individuals rose an estimated 3.9 per cent in 2012 to 228.93 billion USD...

Foundations increased 4.4 per cent to $45.74 billion and corporations rose 12.2 per cent to $18.15 billion...

Donations to the arts and culture, at $14.44 billion; and animal and environmental charities at $8.30 billion, showed the biggest percentage rises via sector... 7.8 and 6.8 per cent...

Other sectors experiencing growth included donations to education causes...

The year’s giving also ended on an upward surge in terms of the calendar, via a philanthropic outpouring from the public in response to the Super Storm Sandy disaster...

In the last two months of 2012, $223 million was given to support charities providing aid following the hurricane/super storm that caused havoc along the east coast...

Giving USA estimates an additional $100 million in Sandy aid donations have also been made in 2013...

Eileen Heisman, of the National Philanthropic Trust, a Giving USA partner, says the figures confirm Americans as the most generous people in the world...

Despite the challenging economic environment in recent years Americans continue to give generously to charitable causes..

But Heisman, the CEO of the grant-making body, identifies a trend of greater discretion from donors about their choice of charities...

"More than ever, I hear from donors that they are selective about the charities and causes they choose to support..." she says...

She also identifies how social media and other online resources have made it “easier for donors to give..."

As well as showing the determination of the public to support good causes through thick and thin, the upbeat report on charity giving also suggests growing confidence from Americans about "the global economy" she adds.

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