Philanthropist. What does that term mean to you? Do you consider yourself a philanthropist? What factors influence how and when you give, whether that means volunteering your time or donating your money?
At the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, an important part of our work is to illustrate that anyone can be—and in fact likely already is—a philanthropist. We wanted to advance that concept, but how could we best illustrate and expand Americans’ philanthropic efforts?
It started with an idea—the idea that there could be an easy, accessible way to learn about charitable giving and volunteering in America. It developed into the new, interactive, online platform and resource GenerosityForLife.org.
Launched this week, it tells the story of American generosity and offers a multifaceted look at giving by American individuals and families.
The website includes customizable visualizations of data on giving collected through the Philanthropy Panel Study (PPS). The PPS follows the same 9,000 households throughout their lives and tracks their giving and volunteering, and the factors that influence those philanthropic practices throughout their lives. As a result, it is the most accurate resource for measuring generational giving and volunteering in the United States.
You can use these resources and data to explore how people give and volunteer in various states and regions across the country via Generosity Maps, build a detailed charitable profile of giving and volunteering trends in the U.S. through Generosity Reports, or even take a quiz that compares your giving and volunteering habits to those of your peers via the Give-O-Meter.
GenerosityForLife.org offers resources for everyone, including current and prospective donors, parents and children, educators, researchers and academics, and nonprofit executives, fundraisers, and practitioners.
Don’t take our word for it, though. Check out GenerosityforLife.org and imagine your own philanthropic story.
Follow the blog over the next few weeks as we dive into what the most recent findings from the PPS tell us about changes and trends in how Americans are giving and volunteering.
Abby Rolland is the blog content coordinator for the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.