Indiana residents seen to trust nonprofits

Three in four Indiana residents say they trust local nonprofits to do what is right “most or just about all the time,” says a study by the Center on Philanthropy and the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University.

Nearly six in 10 say they trust Indiana businesses and corporations, and almost half say they have faith in local government, says the study, “Are Nonprofits Trustworthy?”

Only about one in five Indiana residents voices trust in the federal government, the study says.

The level of trust in nonprofits is especially significant considering the burgeoning pressures brought on by the economic crisis, says Kirsten Grønbjerg, author of the study and chair of philanthropy and the governance and management faculty at the university.

“They’re facing enormous demands, particularly in the human services and health-care sectors,” Grønbjerg says in a statement. “Given the economic crisis, it is likely that nonprofits may not be able to do all the things that are needed.”

Indiana residents with low levels of trust in nonprofits tend to be over 65, belong to a minority group, earn less than $35,000 a year, and have no more than a high-school education, the study says.

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