Like Individual Donors, Fewer Foundations Gave More
The country’s more than 76,000 grantmaking foundations paid out an estimated $45.7 billion in 2010, virtually unchanged from 2009. According to Foundation Growth and Giving Estimates (2011 Edition), released by the Foundation Center, 2010 giving was 2.1 percent below the record high of $46.8 billion awarded by foundations in 2008, despite the fact that foundation assets were still close to 10 percent less than their 2007 peak.
More than 45 percent of respondents to the Foundation Center’s annual “Foundation Giving Forecast Survey” indicated that they had reduced their funding in 2010, but the actions of other grantmakers buoyed the field.
The pattern of fewer donors giving more to prop up giving is tracks with giving by individuals. Target Analytics donorCentrics Index of National Fundraising Performance, produced by Target Analttics, a Blackbaud company, last week showed that while revenue held steady at many of the major, national nonprofits during 2010, the erosion of the donor base continues, with those staying behind adding to their donations and making up the losses.
“Foundations provided stability for nonprofits during a time of crisis,” said Bradford K. Smith, president of the Foundation Center. “Many made extraordinary efforts to maintain their giving levels, while other, often newer foundations even increased their giving.”