Children, animals, disaster relief: what austrians donate to

Children, animals, disaster relief: what Austrians donate to

Overall, the Fundraising Association Austria calculates a donation volume of 630 million euros for 2017.

62 percent of Austrians donate – preferably for children, animals and disaster relief in Germany. Beggars and the homeless came fourth in this ranking. On average, every Austrian provides 113 euros a year for charitable purposes. The Upper Austrians are the most generous in the comparison of the federal states with 126 euros. The Viennese are at the bottom with 99 euros. Lower Austria and Burgenland lead the way, with 74 percent of the population donating. Donations are made to organizations for which there is sympathy, from sympathy and when there is certainty that the donation will reach its destination.

In total, the Austrians donate 630 million euros this year. This volume calculated by the Fundraising Association Austria (FVA) means a slight decline after years of growth and the record value of 640 million euros in 2016. This is attributed to uncertainty among donors due to the new regulations on deductibility as well as fewer calls for refugee aid and elementary events. The top three considered organizations are the Red Cross, Caritas and SOS Children’s Villages.

Since January 1st it is no longer the donors themselves who have to make their donations to the tax office, but the organizations they are considering. For this they need the full name of the donor according to the registration form and their date of birth – which may cause discomfort for some donors. For the organizations, the regulation means an enormous administrative effort, criticized FVA general secretary Günther Lutschinger when presenting the donation report 2017 in Vienna on Wednesday.

"Land of Small Donors"

"We are a country of small donors. What is still missing is a commitment from the wealthy", Lutschinger stated. The Austrian Red Cross (WCC) wants to turn to potential major donors and has set up a foundation for this purpose, said its Secretary General Werner Kerschbaum. There are two topics to be addressed more intensively: The care of dementia patients as well as those who drop out of compulsory school through learning support. 300 to 400 young people are currently supported in so-called learning houses. One would like to install these facilities across Austria, then 3,000 young people could be supported.

There are around 6,500 early school leavers every year, "future unemployed", as Kerschbaum explained. A childcare place costs 2,500 to 3,000 euros a year – far less than an unemployed person, emphasized the WCC general secretary. "We want to make it a mainstream topic", said Kerschbaum, who envisions a private-public partnership for the future. Because donors could rightly object that school education is a task of the public sector. "We are talking to politicians", the WCC general secretary assured.

Desire: deductibility also for education and sport

A number of FVA demands are also directed at politicians. As in Germany and Switzerland, the deductibility of donations should apply to all areas of non-profit making. Education and sport are not currently favored in Austria, and art and culture are favored to a limited extent. Legislation for non-profit organizations should be simplified. "The Ministry of Finance’s association guidelines alone comprise 250 pages. 100 pages have been added in the last legislative period", Lutschinger said. The FVA managing director considers it absolutely necessary to exempt Kest from non-profit assets in order to strengthen Austria as a foundation.

Donation volume in Austria (c) APA

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