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Minnesota giving tops $5 billion

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Fueled in part by disaster-related giving, donations from individual Minnesotans drove charitable giving in the state to a record $5.1 billion in 2005, up 4.9 percent over the previous year, a new report says.

Individuals in Minnesota gave $4.1 billion to charity in 2005, up 6.8 percent from 2004, more than making up for a 1.9 percent drop in giving by the state’s foundations and corporate funders, according to the 2007 edition of Giving in Minnesota, a report by the Minnesota Council on Foundations.

While institutional giving fell, the report attributes the drop to unusually large one-time donations made by two funders in 2004, rather than an overall decline in giving in 2005.

The number of active grantmakers in Minnesota in 2005 grew to 1,378, made up of 1,174 private foundations, 119 corporate funders and 85 community and public foundations.

Heralding growth in future grantmaking, the combined assets of the state’s grantmakers grew to $15.7 billion in 2005, up 7.3 percent from 2004.

Human-services agencies topped the list of funding recipients in 2005, garnering one in four of the state’s grant dollars, an increase over 2004 that the report attributes to response to natural disasters including Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the report says.

Education remained among the top-three issues in 2005, despite seeing its portion of grant dollars drop four percentage points to 21 percent.

Groups focusing on public affairs and societal benefit rounded out the top three, receiving 18 percent of grant dollars, up one percentage point from 2004.

Overall, Minnesota grantmakers awarded almost six in 10 dollars in-state, the report says, with one in three dollars benefiting the Minneapolis – St. Paul area.

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