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Amount of Small Donations Rises Despite Biz Downturn

Posted December. 09, 2008 07:45,   


A 30-something father who was saving money for his child’s birthday party donates it to charity. Young workers who cut funding for their year-end party give the money to the poor.

An art tutor pledges to increase donations if the economy gets worse. And a disabled person sets aside part of his living expenses to help poor children in Nepal.

Despite the economic downturn, the number of small donors helping out is increasing. Even social welfare groups say they are surprised over the increase since they expected donations to decline this year.

The charity group Good Neighbors saw its donation amount rise more than 38 percent from January through October year-on-year and has raised 98 percent of this year’s goal. The share of individual donors also rose from 88 percent last year to 93 percent this year.

Corp. Leftovers Love Sharing Community, which helps children in low-income families, also saw a 57-percent rise in the share of individual donors this year.

The spirit of charity is also going beyond borders. Save the Children has sold 5,000 hats this year, up from 1,000 last year, under its “Knit One Save One” campaign to help newborn babies in poor countries.

Smaller donations from individuals are adding up to make this winter extraordinary.