The World Giving Index is out. Compiled by the Charities Aid Foundation, it’s the largest study of charitable giving around the world. The U.S. ranks fifth in the world, behind Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and Canada (and tied with Switzerland). According to the study, 60 percent of Americans have given money and 39 percent have given time. Read more and view a larger version of the infographic over at The Guardian‘s Datablog.
It’s hard for most of us to imagine having more money than we could ever use. But if you had it, what would you do with it?
The news came out this week that trailblazing philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett have convinced 40 other billionaires to give away at least half their wealth. That’s a lot of cash to help end hunger, fight disease, provide education and generally make things better.
Billionaire Michael Bloomberg said it was an easy decision because it makes more sense to give money away rather than letting family members inherit it all.
“And if you really care about your family, I’ve always thought that the best thing to do is to make the world better for your kids and your grandkids rather than just give them some money,” he says in a story on npr.org.
All that cash headed to nonprofits is great, especially in these rough economic times. What’s even better? Buffett said the real push behind this wave of pledges is to inspire even more giving.
Bill & Melinda Gates have helped to Pass on the Gift before — Follow their philanthrophic direction today and Give the Gift of Hope.