Key Points

· Community philanthropy is the giving of time, talent, and treasure that when invested locally is characteristic of positive change and lasting development.

· This article reports on a survey of 31 small Arkansas communities of 5,000 to 15,000 in population using open-ended descriptive questions. Responses were compared across communities to assess variation in giving/fundraising, civic engagement, and leadership.

· Data confirm that giving/fundraising was substantial, particularly in communities with populations of 8,000 or less.

· Findings show that people are giving not only their money, but also their services, time, and skills – especially in times of emergency response. Giving was not restricted to the wealthy but included various levels of generosity.

· The same leaders engage repeatedly, resulting in leadership fatigue.

· Community philanthropy is a viable innovation and, by growing the public will and momentum for its use, it could turn communities into healthy, equitable places where vulnerable families can succeed.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Open Access