Crisis-Stricken Greeks Reach Bottom of Charity Donations Ranking

Greece came in last in a global ranking as the least charitable nation after three years of economic crisis and fiscal austerity, a study shows.

Greece fell two places to the bottom of a 146-country ranking alongside Montenegro as the countries that gave the least to charity in 2011, the Charities Aid Foundation said today. Australia topped the World Giving Index compiled by the charity, followed by Ireland, Canada, New Zealand and the U.S.

The pressure on the household budgets of Greeks was reflected in most other nations, with the aftershocks of the 2008 financial crisis reducing the amount of time and money people were willing to devote to charity. The survey showed 28 percent of people gave money to charity last year compared with almost 30 percent in 2007.

“In large parts of the world, household incomes are being squeezed, prices are rising and job insecurity is on the increase, with the result that many simply have less time and money to spare,” John Low, chief executive of the group said.

In Greece, the share of people donating to charity fell to 5 percent from 7 percent in 2010. Still, 3 percent of Greeks volunteered time to charitable causes, unchanged from a year earlier, and 30 percent said they had helped a stranger compared with 28 percent.

About 165 million Indians, 143 million Americans and 126 Indonesians donated money, the survey showed.

Women donated more money than men in 2011 around the world, although men were more likely to volunteer time and help a stranger, the charity said.

Gallup interviewed more than 155,000 people in 146 countries on behalf of the group, which provides financial services and social finance to charities.

To contact the reporter on this story: Gonzalo Vina in London at gvina@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net

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