Fidelity® Charitable Gift Fund Study Finds Women Playing a Prominent Role in Shaping Future of Philanthropy
The study also found that the average charitable giver (male and female) surveyed donated 6 percent of gross household income in 2008 with a vast majority giving up to 10 percent; they consider charitable giving a part of their overall financial plan; and they define a philanthropist as someone who donates at least $100,000 a year or more.
Male and Female Charitable Givers Divided Into Four Categories
To better understand the behavior and motivations of today's charitable givers (male and female), the Gift Fund divided its survey participants into four main categories based on their responses: mainstream contributors, empathetic givers, reactive contributors and pioneering givers.
The majority of those surveyed (52 percent) fell into the "mainstream contributor" category. This group is the least likely to give more in challenging economic times because of greater need. When decreasing giving year over year, they are the most likely to keep the same number of charities and just decrease the amount they give. They are the most likely to know in advance which charities to give to. Their average total donations in 2008 were $6,842.
One third (29 percent) of the survey participants fell into the "empathetic giver" group. These people give the most in challenging economic times because of need. They are the most interested in creating a family tradition of charitable giving by engaging their children and spouse. They are the most likely to respond to a cause when personally touched by a disease, illness or tragedy. Their total donations in 2008 averaged $7,287.
Just 15 percent of survey participants are "reactive contributors." This group gives the smallest donations as a percentage of income. They are the most likely to cut back on charitable giving in challenging economic times. They are the least likely to think of charitable giving as part of their overall financial plan. Their total donations in 2008 averaged $3,687.