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Charity giving going gangbusters

Business

After stagnating in the wake of the GFC, Australia’s charitable giving is going gangbusters, according to a report by wealth managers JBWere.

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In its annual report, Australian Giving Trends Signs of Life, JBWere has found the giving sector is rebounding, with a surge in multi-million dollar gifts, an increasing number of private funds and an increase in corporate donations and sponsorships.

Almost 10 years since JBWere’s Giving Trends report was first launched, this year’s report shows that corporate giving has grown even faster than individual donations, rising to $862 million from $635 million in 2007, while sponsorships have grown from $1.1 billion to approximately $1.4 billion.

The report indicates that structured giving has increased significantly with 300 new Private Ancillary Funds established since 2013, reaching almost 1400 in total.

PAFs work as a trust, allowing for structured charitable donations.

But with more than 36,000 people in Australia earning more than $500,000 and only 1400 PAFs, even this giving vehicle has considerable upside potential, JBWere found.

Commenting on the findings of the report, JBWere Philanthropic Services’ John McLeod says that, with an increasingly competitive Australian dollar, increased business confidence and rising spending in retail, construction, transport and services, there are many reasons for the improving trend to continue into 2016.

“Philanthropy and the not-for-profit sector are evolving and it seems that for philanthropy, we are entering a new golden period,” McLeod said.

For individuals, the average individual gift size has increased to $504, only the second time it has ever risen above the $500 level.

But with just over a third (35.6 per cent) of taxpayers claiming a deduction for a charitable gift, the level of individual giving remains flat.

Sources of information for the report included the Australian Taxation Office, the Australian Bureau of Statistics and the NAB Charitable Giving Index.

– AAP

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