California foundation giving grows

Charitable giving by California’s foundations grew 1.5 percent last year to hit a record $4.11 billion, but lagged the 5.5 percent growth posted by foundations throughout the U.S., a new study says.

The number of foundations in the state increased by almost half from 1999 to 2004, outpacing the 35 percent growth posted by foundations nationwide over the same time period, says the report conducted by the Foundation Center and the Center on Philanthropy and Public Policy at the University of Southern California.

Assets of California foundations totaled more than $77 billion in 2004, virtually unchanged since 1999 after adjusting for inflation.

Funders outside California funneled about $4.43 billion to the state, or about 13.2 percent of all foundation giving nationwide, while almost three in four dollars given by California funders stayed in the state.

Health issues continued to attract the largest share of foundation funding, about one in every four dollars, the study says, followed by education, which received almost one in five foundation dollars.

International giving by California foundations grew 73 percent from 1999 to 2004, eclipsing the rise in domestic giving of 28 percent, the study says.

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