MPR News with Angela Davis

Giving more by giving together

People at a table of donations
Kari Heckt (second from left) hands out food items at a community-organized donation giveaway across from Elliot Park in Minneapolis. People gave generously last summer and throughout 2020 to communities hit hard by the civil unrest and the pandemic.
Courtney Perry for MPR News 2020

Americans gave away more money in 2020 than 2019 driven by the needs of the pandemic and renewed interest in racial justice following George Floyd’s death. The uptick was largely credited to individuals making small contributions. 

Many of us think about foundations when we think of philanthropy. But nationally and in Minnesota, individuals give two-thirds of all funds for causes and nonprofits. 

Some of that money flows through giving circles, groups formed by ordinary people — mostly women — who pool their financial resources to give in ways that reflect their priorities. Some circles build on the informal ways immigrants and minority communities have long helped each other and they often support small, local projects overlooked by institutional philanthropy

MPR News host Angela Davis talks to two women in philanthropy about trends in giving last year and the growing popularity of giving circles. 


Use the audio player above to listen to the program.

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