Who gives? What the stats say about giving time and money

Australian Fundraising

Australia is not the world’s most charitable nation. What can fundraisers learn from the latest World Giving Index statistics?

The Charities Aid Foundation’s crunch of Gallup WorldView World Poll statistics puts the US way ahead of Australia for giving time and money to a cause or helping a stranger – a trend that globally all grew in 2012 compared to 2011. Global youth are a driving force in the rise of volunteering.

Australians haven’t become stingy—but coming 7th position, falling from the #1 position in 2010 and 2012 – does suggest fundraisers need to better understand who is giving, who is not, and why.

Key World Giving Index 2013 findings for Australian Fundraising are:

  • 67% give money for a cause
  • 34% volunteer full time
  • 64% will help a stranger

Other Key World Giving Index 2013 findings :

  • Women are more likely (2.7% more) to make a cash donation —or buy something for a cause—than men
  • More women than men give their time – more men are helping strangers than ever before
  • The 50+ age group are the most giving in terms of money
  • Youth—15 to 24 year olds—are big on helping strangers
  • The 25-34 year age group are least likely to volunteer.

Knowing this can inform—even boost—your fundraising efforts:

  • Focus on why you’re fundraising. How does your ‘specific’ fundraising goal translate to a ‘cause’ related goal that could have broader appeal. Read about SMART goal setting for fundraising (page 10 of our Essentials of Fundraising ebook).
  • Women are more likely to spend so direct your marketing approach to items that will appeal to them. Use your network of contacts to place direct sale products (like chocolates) or catalogues in lunchrooms or offices with high female staff numbers.
  • Carefully consider your demographics when choosing a suitable fundraiser. Single income households with a number of children often have tight budgets. Change where the spend happens.
  • Fundraising can be a volunteer hungry activity. Think creatively to encourage all ages. For example:

– Micro-tasking may appeal to time-poor 25-34 year olds.
– Teenagers and young adults are keen to help strangers. Welcome the energy and enthusiasm of youth!
– Virtual volunteering could be an easy way to get people involved.
– Older Australians may not have a direct link to your group but may still want to lend a hand. Does your organisation  have a ‘grands’ program, introducing grandparents, through their grandkids, to what you do?
Not all nations ‘give’ as generously as Australians. If your community has a high migrant population, the World Giving Index 2013 can help you understand their cultural approach to giving time and money.

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