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Indiana sees drop in charitable giving

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Indiana households gave about $3.86 billion to charity in 2006, a drop from $4.09 billion given in 2003 after adjusting for inflation, says a study released by the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University.

Fewer than six in 10 households gave to charity in 2006, compared to nearly seven in 10 in 2003, says the study, “Indiana Gives 2008.”

“While fewer Indiana households are giving to charity, the good news is that those who do give are giving more,” Patrick M. Rooney, interim executive director of the Center on Philanthropy, says in a statement.

After adjusting for inflation, the average Indiana household donated $2,211 to charity in 2006, a 21 percent increase over the $1,827 donated in 2003, he says.

Indiana residents also exceeded the national giving average, which was $2,185 per household in 2006.

More than nine in 10 Indiana residents cited religious beliefs as the primary reason for their charitable giving, and just under half of all donations were given to religious organizations.

Nonprofits serving basic needs received 9.9 percent of donations, while public-society benefit organizations, such as United Way, received 8.4 percent.

Indianapolis-area donors gave an estimated $1 billion, more than a quarter of the total amount Indiana households gave to charity in 2006.

Nearly six in 10 households in the state’s capital region gave to charity in 2006, down from eight in 10 in 2003.

The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University aims to increase understanding of philanthropy and improve its practice through research, teaching and training programs.

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