Rapid Growth in Charities-Just a Random Thought

A report by Sanford University stated that the numbers of 501(c)( 3) has grown by more than 60% in the United States to 1.1 million in just a decade. I think that some of this growth may be contribute to the economic and political climate over the less decay. The report also stated that the $300 billion donated to charities last year cost the federal government more than $5o billion in lost tax revenue. There are some who think that the IRS should tighten up the requirement and limit the numbers of charitable organizations and also decide which organization should or/ are more able to better provide these services.

I think that there is a greater need today for more nonprofit organizations. The government may lack the resources, skills and sometimes the desire to provide the services that many of these organizations are providing. The federal government  does not have the management skills, resources and capabilities to make these type of decisions. Instead of considering actions which will discourage Americans from donating we should be looking to encourage Americans to donate more time and resources to nonprofits.

This whole discussion about lost revenue is an oxymoron because the numbers speak for themselves. Most of the donations to 501(c) (3) organizations are giving because they are tax exemptions.  If you discourage donors from giving ” what is the taxable benefit” to IRS?  How can limiting  an organization abilities to receive tax exempt donations or the donor ability to give a  What do you think?


If you know of any nonprofit organizations doing great work offering hope for the hopeless, please sent me an email. The organizations may get mention in a later post or may even get listed as a resource on my web site. Please take a look at my newsletter for other tips, resources and valuable information.   http://www.darlingnonprofitconsultant.com

If you know of resources that you think would be helpful to other, please forward their contact information so that we can share it. Keep checking back here for more information, ideals and comments as we moved forward in these tough times.

See you soon!


3 Responses to “Rapid Growth in Charities-Just a Random Thought”

  1. sander-martijn Says:

    While I am not worried about lost tax revenues as I don’t agree with how the US government spends our money anyway, I do believe there is some validity to the concern. Development work really started becoming popular after WWII. Assuming it took some time to get going, let’s say it’s been in full swing for about 60 years, though it’s probably longer. Yet nearly every recipient nation is in a worse state now than they were 60 years ago. So where is the money going? Most of it goes into the pockets of the wealthy people that run many of these orgs, particularly the larger ones. If you want to make a serious argument either way on this issue you should probably start by reading up on some of the very real and well documented criticism. I would recommend starting with “The Road to Hell”. For a more in-depth global analysis you can read “Lords of Poverty”, but the first is a better read as it’s more personal, so although it focuses primarily on one country – namely Somalia, it demonstrates a global and widespread issue.

  2. Kay Lorraine Says:

    You make an interesting case for the nonprofits created in the last decade (and I’m quite certain that is what the 3rd line of copy originally said – I think somewhere the computer misinterpreted your words. It happens sometimes.)

    But there are two sides to this thought (aren’t there always?) and you can read mine at my businss blog http://BizBitchBlog.blogspot.com under the title “Why We Don’t Need Another Nonprofit.” I am worried about the overlapping support systems in this down economy.

    No right or wrong about this. Just different points of veiw.

    Kay Lorraine, Nonprofit Executive
    Honolulu, Hawaii

  3. sander-martijn Says:

    After reading Kay’s post on the subject I would say I am in agreement with her. Aside from the corruption issues which is more personal to me, working in development, another issue is “flooding”. People are inundated daily by chairty requests and most don’t have the time or energy to figure out which ones are valid. Too many are taking advantage of the system. Tighter controls and oversight would help this, assuming of course these controls benefit the groups actually making positive change. Unfortunately they probably won’t. High up politicians are friends with executives of high up 501c3s, which guarantees that things will fall in their favor. The likelihood of any oversight being a positive thing is next to none – all it will do is shut down possibilities for the smallest orgs, which are probably the ones actually making a difference out there.

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