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Arkansans Among Top Charitable Donors Entering Giving Tuesday

Charities and nonprofit groups in Arkansas and across the country raised more than $116 million last year through donations made on Giving Tuesday. (PinkPills/iStockphoto)
Charities and nonprofit groups in Arkansas and across the country raised more than $116 million last year through donations made on Giving Tuesday. (PinkPills/iStockphoto)
November 29, 2016

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A new survey shows that Arkansas is poised to make the most of Giving Tuesday, the annual day created to remind shoppers to save some money for their favorite charity.

According to the marketing firm WalletHub, even though it is among the smaller and poorer states in the country, Arkansas ranks near the top when it comes to charitable giving.

Jill Gonzales, an analyst with WalletHub, said there are a few reasons Arkansans ranked 10th in the country for generosity.

"There's a large percentage of the population that collects, makes or distributes clothing for charitable purposes," she said. "There is also a high amount of the adjusted gross income that is donated to charity every year."

Gonzales said another reason she believes the state does so well at charitable giving is that Arkansas students must complete a community service requirement to graduate from high school. She said studies have found when community service is instilled in students, it remains a lifelong habit when they become adults.

Jamie McDonald, the lead for civic and higher education campaigns with the umbrella group Giving Tuesday said going into its fifth year, the day is becoming better established in the public's mind. She added that last year's campaign helped raise more than $116 million.

"It was an idea that, on the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, we wanted to kind of put the 'give' back in the giving season, and realign folks' perspective on what the December period of time means for most people, she explained.

WalletHub's Gonzales said the Giving Tuesday program is bringing charitable giving back into style.

"Americans are still very generous people," she added. "So, out of this World Giving index of 140 countries last year, we were actually ranked second most charitable. And it's still certainly in fashion to be giving, especially around this time of year."

To find a participating charity in your city or state, look online at GivingTuesday.org or search #GivingTuesday.

Mark Richardson, Public News Service - AR