How America Ranked in New Study of Nations’ Generosity

american-rally-crowd-flagfrom – The Daily Signal – by Leah Jessen

When it comes to generosity, the United States came in second in a new edition of an annual index.

“Americans should be proud of their long tradition of giving to good causes and helping others,” Ted Hart, chief executive officer of Charities Aid Foundation of America, an international charity, said in a statement.

The Charities Aid Foundation released the 2016 World Giving Index on Oct. 24. The United States came in second place for generosity, with Myanmar in first, just like last year. In 2014, the United States and Myanmar tied for the top spot.

The index, now in its seventh year running, primarily used data from an ongoing Gallup World Poll project and ranked 140 countries for this year’s listing. In 2015, 148,000 people were surveyed across these countries as part of the Gallup poll.

“The American way is for everyone to be able to follow their ambitions and fulfil their dreams, but also to reach out and help people in times of need,” Hart said.

Behind Myanmar and the United States were Australia, New Zealand, and Sri Lanka. Rounding out the top 10 were Canada, Indonesia, United Kingdom, Ireland, and the United Arab Emirates.

The index looks at “the number of people who helped a stranger in the past month, volunteered their time, or gave money to a good cause,” a press release says.

Helping a stranger is the most common way to give, according to the index.

“The generosity of people, even in countries suffering from disaster and turmoil, is truly humbling,” John Low, chief executive of the Charities Aid Foundation, said in a statement.

Out of all the people surveyed, over half said they have helped a stranger, a first-time occurrence since the index started, “a testament to the innate human desire to help others whenever they are in need,” Low wrote in the forward to the index report.

Around three-quarters, 73 percent, of Americans say they have helped a stranger.

“In every county, people have this in-built desire to give and help others,” Low said in a statement. “Governments should encourage that spirit of generosity and create the environment in which a strong civil society can flourish, allowing people to reach out to those less fortunate than themselves.”

Sixty-three percent of Americans say they have given money to charitable causes, while 46 percent of Americans have volunteered their time.

“In many countries, men are significantly more likely than women to engage in volunteering or helping a stranger,” the index says. “However, at the global average level, there is little difference between men and women when it comes to donating money.”

Turkmenistan ranked No. 1 by participation in volunteering time.

“Turkmenistan returns to the Top 10 in first place, a position which it held every year from 2011 until last year when ‘Saturday subbotniks’ were cancelled. This is the widespread, and sometimes mandatory, practice of giving up a Saturday to volunteer or perform unpaid labour,” the index says.

The bottom five countries, from most to least generous, of the 140 included in the index were the Democratic Republic of Congo, Greece, Yemen, Palestinian territories, and China.

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Wayne Peterkin
6 years ago

Note the lack of more socialist nations on that list. You don’t see China, Russia, Cuba, or Venezuela do you? And you never will.

6 years ago
Reply to  Wayne Peterkin


Rich E
6 years ago

You mean the “Hate America First” party.

Charles Ring
6 years ago

I wonder if you count the Lions Club. Curing fly bites with inoculation plus others millions of children and adults treated. Cured river blindness in children, over millions treated in Africa alone. No longer one (1) in
(4) going blind. This is not funded by the government. Lions Club International and others joined in.
Any money received in fund collecting must be spent to help people. All club costs and association
costs are paid by Lion members. I repeat, no government funds used. If you want to help join a club,
Your dues might seem high but remember in contrast to some other associations, the money for dues
come out of your pocket.

6 years ago

Israel should be #1. She is the first country to help out in a disaster, despite her small size.

John Degges
6 years ago

Tom, you would have the government sequester individual gift to people to pay the debt of the government? That would be theft. I understand the survey was of individual giving, not government giving. Am I mistaken?

Tempest Tom
6 years ago

I wonder what the world would look like if the US placed a moratorium on giving for 3 years and used 100% of the savings to pay down our debt?

Tempest Tom
6 years ago

I wonder what the world would look like if the US placed a moratorium on giving for 3 years and used 100% of the savings to pay down our debt?

6 years ago

As a nation, we need to take our own citizens first…then the world. Yes…our poor live a better life compared to third world nations who get nothing from there own governments.

Our U.S. churches use to be light of world, but, our government have persecuted our freedom of religion since Obama our muslim leader & king of the united states took power! So, we as a nation have backed off assisting the poor…even our own!

6 years ago
Reply to  eagle-eye

I absolutely refute your claim that “we as a nation have backed off assisting the poor…even our own!” I for one, being blessed am very concerned for my fellow Americans and my church does their part to give back to those less fortunate. I, in turn contribute through tithing as much as I am able and I keep a keen eye on how my tithes along with my fellow Christian’s tithes are being spent and am pleased that the Church is extremely frugal in their expenditures for administrative expenses in order to give more to God’s poor! As for our nation, unless the books are cooked, being second in world giving is nothing to sneeze at.

6 years ago
Reply to  Tom

You are so correct, I’m a church surfer because I can’t find one that supports more then just a token bit in their local community, (mostly to appease the natives). I think our own country should be first. Do the research, somewhere around $71B yes billion in aide is sent to foreign countries just from US churches. I would be happy if it was just 50/50. I tithe to a mission on an Indian reservation that has just .02% administrative costs. Being second in the world doesn’t impress me one bit. Churches should be ashamed of themselves for ignoring the poverty here in the US.

6 years ago
Reply to  eagle-eye

Since the government has taken over the charitable giving with tax supported welfare, you will find that giving to the local church has declined. This attitude has not been helped with the observed abuse of such welfare assistance. After incidents like Haiti’s catastrophe and the huge amounts of charity that poured into that country with no real measurable long term affect, people have become a little jaded. Whenever the charity gets depersonalized and there is no direct accountability it fails. Like so many things, we need to take back charity/welfare from big government and bring it back home to the local level where we can personally direct and oversee the needs of the less fortunate. Our communities would start to look more like a family that cares and watches out for one another. There will be a natural outgrowth of international charity. There are already really well run NGO that specialize in international charity but our own government is the greatest impediment to our internal needs.

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