The Foundation Center has released a new report examining the impact of foundations' and corporations' response to the September 11 tragedy on their overall giving. The report also evaluates the relative impact of the 9/11 response versus the stock market decline and 2001 recession on giving patterns and practices.
The report, Assessing the Post-9/11 Funding Environment: Grantmakers' Perspectives, is based on a nationwide survey of 333 foundations and corporate funders — including 240 donors to 9/11-related causes — conducted recently by the Center. The report is one component of a multi-year initiative undertaken by the Center to create a definitive record and tell the story of institutional philanthropy's response in the aftermath of 9/11.
According to the report, more than half (56.7 percent) the 9/11 donors in the sample made at least a portion of their relief and recovery giving from their annual grants budgets, while nearly one-third (31.7 percent) tapped discretionary funds and 13 percent used existing or newly created employee matching-gift funds. The report also found that even though grants budgets were the most common source of 9/11 pledges, support for relief and recovery efforts did not reduce foundations and corporations' support for other programs. Other key findings include: foundations and corporations supported a multi-purpose, long-term approach to crisis response; most grantmakers did not shift their giving priorities after 9/11 or initiate new programs; and despite substantial asset losses resulting from the downturn in the economy, most grantmakers did not reduce their year-end 2001 giving.
"In the months following the events of September 11, nonprofits were concerned that the unprecedented response by foundations and corporations would reduce giving for other programs and lead to changes in grantmakers' priorities," said Loren Renz, the Center's vice president for research and author of the report. "This study tested these assumptions and teased out the relative impact of other factors affecting prospects for giving in 2002."
The complete eight-page report can be viewed online at: http://fdncenter.org/research/911.