Published May 1, 2009 | May 2009 issue
Recessions take no prisoners. That includes foundation and other grant makers, who said support to nonprofits will likely be flat or decline this year.
The Minnesota Council on Foundations surveyed 107 grant-making organizations late last year, including private, corporate and community foundations, and found that a majority of them are expecting to reduce their giving this year, some by as much as 4 percent, because of the decline in the stock market and related asset bases. The worse news is that grant makers foresee further asset losses in 2009.
Consequently, grant makers anticipated the number of awards to decrease; more than four times as many expected to decrease awards (36 percent) as expected to increase awards, though a fair portion reported being uncertain about 2009 grant making. The largest foundations, which award $10 million or more annually, expected their giving to decline only 1 percent to 2 percent. That might seem manageable, but it is compounded by nonprofits' expectations of much higher demand for services this year.
—Ronald A. Wirtz