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Non-profit Research

Did you know?

The nonprofit sector

  • In 2006, there were over 1.9 million nonprofit organizations in the United States.
  • There are approximately 1.4 million 501(c)(3) organizations, including hospitals, museums, private schools, religious congregations, orchestras, public television and radio stations, soup kitchens, and foundations.
  • In 2004, the nonprofit sector accounted for 5.2 percent of GDP
  • Total charitable giving reached $260.3 billion in 2005. In 2002, nearly seven out of ten households gave to charitable causes.
  • Most nonprofits are small. More than 73 percent of reporting public charities reported annual expenses of less than $500,000 in 2004. Less than 4 percent of reporting public charities had expenses greater than $10 million.


  • 44 percent of adults volunteer.
  • 83.9 million American adults volunteer, representing the equivalent of over 9 million full-time employees at a value of $239 billion.
  • The hourly value of volunteer time is $18.77 for 2006.


  • 89 percent of households give.
  • The average annual contribution for contributors is $1,620.
  • Itemizing households give 37 percent more in contributions than nonitemizing households ($1,800 vs. $1,310);
  • Itemizers give nearly two-thirds more to religion than nonitemizers;
  • Homeowners who itemize their tax deductions give more than homeowners who do not itemize; and
  • In every income group examined, itemizing households give at least 40 percent more than non-itemizing households.

Experience at work

  • Forty-four percent of adults volunteer and two-thirds of these volunteers began volunteering their time when they were young.
  • Adults who began volunteering as youth are twice as likely to volunteer as those who did not volunteer when they were younger.

Engaging youth

  • High school volunteering recently reached the highest levels in the past 50 years.
  • In every income and age group, those who volunteered as youth give and volunteer more than those who did not.
  • Those who volunteered as youth and whose parents volunteered became the most generous adults in giving time

Faith and Philanthropy:

  • Over 85 percent of religious-giving households support secular organizations;
  • Fifty-two percent (52%) of all households give to both religious congregations and secular organizations, but those households account for 81 percent of all donations;
  • Households that give to both types of institutions give more to religion ($1,391) compared to households that only give to religion ($1,154); and
  • Fifty-five percent (55%) of dual-giving households give to at least two other kinds of organizations.

Keeping the trust

  • 4% of Americans believe charities are honest and ethical in their use of funds.
  • 71% of Americans expressed their continued support for charities responding to the September 11 terrorist attacks.
  • Donors who have high confidence in charities give approximately 50% more annually than do donors who express low confidence ($1,796 average annual gift vs. $1,245).

Giving in tough economic times

  • The most generous households, (those with incomes more than $75,000) decrease their giving by 33 percent from over $3,600 per household to less than $2,500.
  • Households with incomes between $50,000 and $75,000 decrease their giving by 32 percent from $2,030 to $1,390.
  • Households with incomes between $25,000 and $50,000 show a 45 percent decline in giving from $1,300 to $710.
  • Households with incomes less than $25,000 decrease their giving by 23 percent from $560 to $430.
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World map with Contries where Humanity First presence highlighted

Humanity First is registered in 43 countries across 6 continents, and has been working on human development projects and responding to disasters since 1994. These have included the earthquakes in Turkey, Pakistan, Japan and Iran, floods in Africa and Latin America, hurricanes (Katrina and Rita) , tornado's (Kansas) and wild fires (California) in the USA, Indonesia and Bangladesh, and conflicts in Eastern Europe.

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Return on Investment

92% Return on Investment

Since its inception and IRS registration in 2004, Humanity First has been focused on spending most of the raised funds on direct program related expenses. As a result, more than 90% of its funds are in that expense category. This is achieved through dedicated volunteers in its management, and program operation teams.

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