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Charitable giving rises across country, Allegheny County

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By Bill Zlatos
Thursday, June 20, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Charitable giving rose 3.5 percent to $316.2 billion last year, mirroring the modest improvement in the economy, according to the 2013 Giving USA Report on Philanthropy.

Giving increased nearly $10.7 billion from the nearly $305.5 billion raised in 2011. The report was compiled by the Giving USA Foundation and its research partner, the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.

The Pittsburgh Foundation surpassed the national average by raising $65 million in 2012, an increase of 8 percent over the previous year and its third consecutive fundraising record. Foundation officials attributed it to strengthened partnerships with the region's professional advisers, estate trust attorneys and accountants.

The United Way of Allegheny County also collected a record $33.2 million in 2012 — a 2.7 percent increase over the previous year's $32.3 million. The total has increased the past three years, the agency said.

The national report found that charitable giving by individuals rose by 3.9 percent to $228.9 billion; corporations gave 12.2 percent more, nearly $18.2 billion; and foundations gave 4.4 percent more, $45.7 billion.

Analysts noted that income, wealth and a sense of financial security drive individual giving. The $223 million given for Hurricane Sandy relief helped fuel contributions to human services.

Bill Zlatos is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7828

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