Charitable Giving – Which Causes Rank High for Women?

Charitable Giving – Which Causes Rank High for Women?

December 08, 2010 by jga_admin

By Angela White

The Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University just released the second part of its Women Give 2010 research. You can also review my October blog post if you’d like to find out more about the first part of the report.

This second research release is entitled Causes Women Support and asks the question, “Are there differences between male and female single-headed households across all subsectors of charitable giving?”

To answer this question, this study used the Center on Philanthropy Panel Study of 2,500 households to examine the likelihood and amount of giving across 11 areas of charity. This is the only national study that examines all areas of giving across single-headed households.

So, what did the study find out? Among key points, the results show that female single-headed households are more likely than any of the male single-headed households to give to

  1. religion,
  2. combined purposes eg: United Way, community foundations, etc.,
  3. helping people in need,
  4. health care,
  5. education,
  6. youth or family,
  7. community, and
  8. international.

Female single-headed households are as likely as their male counterparts to give to arts & culture, environment, and other.

The study also found that the top five areas in which female-headed households are significantly more likely than their male counterparts to give are the international, community, religion, health care, and youth & family areas.

Why? The study’s summary report gives this insight:

While more research is needed to assess why the top five areas resonate more deeply with women (international, community, religious institutions, health care, and youth and family), a common thread may be connectivity. From previous research, we know that women are drawn to causes and organizations with which they or family members are connected or to which they can closely relate. Perhaps the connection with these types of charitable organizations is deeper and thus reflected in women’s likelihood to make philanthropic investments.

I believe that this research illustrates the opportunity we have to engage both women and men in connecting their charitable giving to their passions. What do you think?

As a national speaker and faculty member of the Women’s Philanthropy Institute Speakers Bureau, I applaud these important initiatives to increase the understanding of why women give in our industry.