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The individual people of America are making a difference!

June 25, 2007

NEW YORK (AP) — Americans gave nearly $300 billion to charitable causes last year, setting a new record and besting the 2005 total that had been boosted by a surge in aid to victims of hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma — and the Asian tsunami.

“What people find especially interesting about this, and it’s true year after year, that such a high percentage comes from individual donors,” Giving USA Chairman Richard Jolly said.

Gaudiani said Americans give twice as much as the next most charitable country, according to a November 2006 comparison done by the Charities Aid Foundation. In philanthropic giving as a percentage of gross domestic product, the U.S. ranked first at 1.7 percent. No. 2 Britain gave 0.73 percent, while France, with a 0.14 percent rate, trailed such countries as South Africa, Singapore, Turkey and Germany.

Meanwhile, companies and their foundations gave less in 2006, dropping 10.5 percent to $12.72 billion. Jolly said corporate giving fell because companies had been so generous in response to the natural disasters and because profits overall were less strong in 2006 over the year before.

(Excerpts are taken from a CNN news story at http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/06/25/charitable.giving.ap/index.html?eref=rss_topstories)

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