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Gen Y emerge as Australia’s most generous givers

14 March 2019 at 9:00 am
Luke Michael
Millennials are the most giving generation in Australia and are nearly twice as likely to volunteer for a cause than baby boomers, according to new research.

Luke Michael | 14 March 2019 at 9:00 am


Gen Y emerge as Australia’s most generous givers
14 March 2019 at 9:00 am

Millennials are the most giving generation in Australia and are nearly twice as likely to volunteer for a cause than baby boomers, according to new research.

The Australia Giving report, released by Good2Give on Thursday, found millennials were the most likely generation to donate to charity, with nearly two thirds of Gen Y (60 per cent) making a donation in the past year, compared to 51 per cent of boomers.

Looking more closely at age groups, the likelihood to give peaked at 74 per cent for 25-34 year olds.

More than a third of millennials (34 per cent) have also volunteered in the past year, compared to 18 per cent of baby boomers.

Good2Give CEO Lisa Grinham told Pro Bono News that the findings, based on interviews with 1,023 people across Australia, supported other research that showed younger generations were becoming more generous than their older counterparts.

“For charities that perhaps have older donor bases, the fact that there’s a new generation coming through that sees giving as really central to who they are is really promising,” Grinham said.

“And working with a lot of corporates around how they give, it’s also really encouraging because it means people are coming into workplaces with an expectation that companies are going to have a sense of purpose and support them in their giving.

Caring about the cause was the most common reason given by Aussies as to why they donate, with more than half (54 per cent) of people saying this. Helping people less fortunate (41 per cent) was the second most cited reason, followed by realising they could make a difference (33 per cent).       

Grinham said to increase donations, it was “absolutely key” that charities invested in technology.

She noted that the future of donors (18-24 year olds) were more than twice as likely on average to donate through a workplace giving program because technology made it easy.

“It really reinforces that charities can tap into people that are working and therefore more likely to have the income to give, as opposed to older people who are retired and might be a bit more concerned about their spending,” she said.

“I’d also note that 41 per cent of people said that they would be likely to donate more money or volunteer time if they knew how their money was spent. That sends a very clear message that charities need to ensure that they’re very open and transparent in their communication to donors.”

The youngest generation, Gen Z (born from the mid-1990s) were found nearly three times more likely to support children’s causes than the boomer generation (43 per cent to 15 per cent) and were twice as likely to help the poor (33 per cent to 17 per cent).

Grinham said this generation seemed to believe it needed to take part in the positive change it wanted to see in the world.

“It’s wonderful to see that this next generation has such a sense of purpose,” she said.  

Despite this, other research suggests that baby boomers are still the number one generation when it comes to giving.

Pareto Fundraising’s State of the Donation 2019 said boomers – with the highest net worth of any generation – gave more time, talent and money than other generations, made over half of all donations and made the highest average donation.

Recent Roy Morgan polling also found those aged 50 to 64 were the age group most likely to give to charity, followed by those aged 35 to 49.

Luke Michael  |  Journalist  |  @luke_michael96

Luke Michael is a journalist at Pro Bono News covering the social sector.

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