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College of Social and Behavioral Sciences


Media Contact: Robert O'Keefe
(818) 677-3747
Media Release Archives


Slowdown Likely to Put a Damper on Giving, Survey Finds


Against the backdrop of a slowing economy, 29 percent of individuals expect to cut back on their charitable giving this fall, with fully a quarter (26 percent) of those individuals saying they are done giving for the year, a new survey from the Grizzard Communications Group finds.

The survey of nearly five hundred individuals who made a financial contribution to a charity other than a house of worship in the past twelve months found that 44 percent of respondents look to contribute the same amount in the remaining four months of 2008 as they gave in the fall of 2007, while only 13 percent said they planned to increase their giving. Respondents between the ages of 25 and 34 were the most likely to say they plan to increase their giving. According to Grizzard vice president and senior strategist Terry Barber, it is especially important to court younger donors in this environment, as many people over the age of 65 who are usually reliable when it comes to charitable giving may be feeling the pinch from rising inflation and a tumbling stock market.

The survey also assessed a series of retention messages in order to measure which ideas resonate with donors and are most likely to result in ongoing or additional support. The findings suggest that the most powerful messages inform the public how their gifts are used by the organization (31 percent) or affirm that their contributions are matched by corporate sponsors (27 percent).

"As we continue to face these hard economic times, it’s imperative that we continue to focus on building stronger relationships with an organization’s best donors," said Grizzard CEO Chip Grizzard. "Acquisition efforts continue to decline and will be even more difficult this year. That makes donor retention absolutely critical."

“Current U.S. Economy Causes Seniors to Give Less, the Young to Give More.” Grizzard Communications Group Press Release 9/02/08.
Primary Subject: Philanthropy and Voluntarism
Location(s): National