Donations to charities are down

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - A new ranking of the nation's 400 largest charities shows donations dropped 11 percent in 2009, the worst decline in 20 years.

The nation's biggest charity, the United Way, is also hurting.

Directors at the River Region United Way say charities in our area saw declines across the board.

Officials say that because of this economic and work place environment, giving has been down the past few years.

Overall, there's some good news. The decline in our area is less severe than the national rankings.

Locally, the United Way saw a 3 to a 3.5 percent decrease compared to the 4.5 percent drop nationally.

The charity is what they call a pass through organization because when they receive donations, they pass it on to the 48 charitable agencies under them.

This decline is felt among 130,000 people.

Workers say they're are doing everything they can to reverse the trend through fundraising campaigns.

They credit the giving spirit of folks this area for helping us fair better than the national trend.

"I've been with the United Way as a volunteer for 35 years before I came here and this area, the River Region, historically gives when others don't... Or gives when others decline in giving. This area just has that mentality to give back and help those in need," said River Region United Way .

The River Region United Way is in the middle of their big fundraising campaign.

Many of your companies may be taking up donations.

Mr. Dunman says that it's going well so far. He says they're optimistic that they will meet the goal this year.

If you want more information about the River Region United Way and their 48 agencies, give them a call at 264-7318.

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