Foundations see increased support from residentsCharitable foundations have seen their portfolios take a big hit from Wall Street during this recession, but a Wisconsin group says individuals are coming forward to make up the difference.
By: Mike Simonson, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
Charitable foundations have seen their portfolios take a big hit from Wall Street during this recession, but a Wisconsin group says individuals are coming forward to make up the difference.
As it is, individuals in Wisconsin account for 80-percent of charitable giving. Donor Forum Wisconsin says the last year of available statistics shows people gave $3 billion, while foundations gave half a billion dollars. Donor Forum Wisconsin President Deborah Fugenschuh says people dig deeper in hard times. Such as, she says, “the disaster occurring now in Wisconsin with the high unemployment rate, people foreclosing on homes, and people going hungry.”
Fugenschuh says people with jobs want to help those without work. In 2008, while foundations had to retrench and give less, individual contributions increased by 12-percent.
Case in point is the Apostle Islands Area Community Fund. In mid-June, they were $4,000 short of their $40,000 fundraising goal and had just two weeks to reach it. Fund Officer Madelaine Karwoski says they not only met their goal, but exceeded it by $20,000 with donations from individuals.
The donations are needed. Fugenschuh says a Brookings Institute report says one in four non-profits may fail this year.