Private Giving to Developing Nations Not Expected to Drop Significantly in 2009, Report Finds

Private Giving to Developing Nations Not Expected to Drop Significantly in 2009, Report Finds

Despite the global recession, charitable giving to developing nations by individuals, foundations, corporations, and other organizations is not expected to decline significantly in 2009, a new report from the Hudson Institute's Center for Global Prosperity finds.

According to the fourth annual Index of Global Philanthropy and Remittances (88 pages, PDF), private giving from developed to developing countries increased to $49 billion in 2007 — nearly $37 billion of which came from the United States. When remittances that migrants sent back to their families in developing nations are included, the total jumps to $145 billion ($116 billion from the United States) — significantly more than the $103.5 billion in government aid that developed countries gave to developing countries. Despite the economic downturn, remittances — which may be the most recession-resilient means to help alleviate poverty in developing countries — increased some 9 percent in 2008 and are expected to decline by less than 10 percent in 2009.

For the first time, the report provides private-giving data by region and type of activity showing that Africa receives the largest share of gifts from corporations and charities, while for Latin America the bulk of giving comes from religious congregations. The report also found that global philanthropy is on the rise in both developed and developing countries outside the United States and may be leading to something of a transformation of the decades-old government aid model.

"The Obama administration is well positioned to launch a new business model for foreign aid, one which uses government dollars largely to help successful philanthropic projects scale up," said Center for Global Prosperity director Carol Adelman. "The president's campaign of savvy, Web-based technology, direct outreach to voters through blogs, videos, and interactive Web sites resulting in a large number of small donations mirrors what philanthropy is now pioneering as it seeks to work more effectively with new players in a new developing world."