Spending

(from USA Today http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2007-06-25-charitable_N.htm)

"Donors contributed an estimated $295.02 billion in 2006"

"The biggest chunk of the donations, $96.82 billion or 32.8%, went to religious organizations."

"The second largest slice, $40.98 billion or 13.9%, went to education, including gifts to colleges, universities and libraries."

Keep in mind that:

Of God and Mammon: "According to the National Congregations Study, a 1998 survey of all kinds of churches, temples and mosques, half of the congregations in the United States have 75 members or less, and the average number of volunteers in direct social work is only 10. Moreover, the median amount spent per congregation on direct assistance to the needy is $1,500 a year; overall, social programs attract an average of less than 3 percent of a congregation's annual budget."

The National Congregations Study did a second study in 2006, and I'm trying to get the results of that posted here as soon as I can figure that out.

Another book, Mark Chaves's book Congregations in America says about 2% (2004) of a congregation's annual budget goes to social programs.

Is there a better way for $90 billion to be spent?

One thought…

National Cancer Institute is requesting $5.8 billion for 2008.

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