American trust in philanthropy declining, finds study


Alliance magazine


Almost half of Americans believe that nonprofits are on the ‘wrong track’, and only a third believe they contribute a lot to society, according to research from the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

The poll was conducted in the summer of 2022 and aligns with what statistics have already been showing: a general decline in confidence in charities and nonprofits – part of a broader decline in trust in all institutions.

‘The public perception of nonprofits can have an impact on how individuals choose to interact with these organizations as donors, volunteers, and recipients of services – and more broadly, how these organizations are regulated by the government,’ reads the introduction to the report.

While Americans trust nonprofits more than government or business, trust in all three sectors of society is low. Religious charitable organisations are seen as the most trustworthy and transparent type of philanthropic entity, followed closely by community foundations, the research finds.

To read the full report, visit

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