Maine Philanthropy Center releases latest Foundation Giving in Maine reports

Friday, March 29, 2024

PORTLAND – Maine Philanthropy Center (MPC) recently released our latest Foundation Giving in Maine reports – unique data products from MPC in service of our data-driven approach to telling the story of philanthropy in Maine. Based on the latest FY2020 and FY2021 data, these one-of-a-kind, unique-to-Maine reports unpack how money is invested in our communities. The reports are built upon thorough data collection and enhanced by the relationships and networks MPC cultivates. These reports are a positive step toward better understanding how philanthropic dollars flow through and to our state despite the challenges that incomplete reporting and opaque giving vehicles present.

The latest reports cover the onset and long-term impacts from COVID-19, the racial awakening and reckoning following the disproportionate number of killings of Black individuals by the police, and the beginning of exceptional levels of inflation not seen since the 1980s. The reports attempt to peel back the curtain on what happened during those two years within the foundation giving context.

Key findings of the report include:

  • In 2020, there was a national surge in foundation giving and Maine’s giving matched this trend. According to Giving USA 2021, national foundation giving rose 17 percent. In Maine, we saw a 21 percent increase from foundations based or reporting in Maine.
  • Donor-advised fund (DAF) giving from Maine-based DAF sponsors exploded in 2020. DAFs, primarily mobilized by the Maine Community Foundation, gave unprecedented dollars — increasing year over year by 75 percent.
  • In 2021, despite a strong stock market and continued heightened need due to the uneven vaccine rollout and consumer prices increasing at a rapid rate, we saw cutbacks in philanthropic giving levels. Giving by Maine-based or Maine-reporting foundations decreased by 12 percent during this time, while nationally, according to Giving USA 2022, giving increased just over 3 percent. When adjusted for inflation Maine's foundation giving dropped down to 2019 levels.

Want to learn more? Join our webinar on April 2, 2024 to delve into the results of the reports and hear about on-the-ground experiences from a panel of funders and nonprofits, including representatives from Cross Cultural Community Services, Mano en Mano, Elmina B. Sewall Foundation, and Maine Initiatives.

The latest Foundation Giving in Maine reports are now available for download on the Maine Philanthropy Center’s website.

About Maine Philanthropy Center: Maine Philanthropy Center (MPC) is a membership organization for funders, nonprofits, and consultants that works to make philanthropy more effective and equitable by building relationships, providing valuable tools and resources, and creating opportunities to learn and move our sector forward.

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