Faith, Hope and Charities
THE ECONOMIST|Nov 11th 2010
FEW institutions in the modern world enjoy more trust than charities—a trust given both by rich people who give them money and by the wider public that may benefit from their work. A recent survey by American Express shows that 70% of Americans trust non-profit outfits more than government or business to “address some of the most pressing issues of our time”. A survey by Merrill Lynch of rich people found that over 94% trusted non-profit organisations (business won a 68% rating and government a paltry 32%).
Trust in do-gooders extends well beyond America. This year’s “Trust Barometer”, an annual survey of attitudes in six countries by Edelman, a PR firm, found that non-governmental organisations, or NGOs (as non-profits tend to be described outside America), were more trusted than governments or businesses. That was true even in China, where trust in NGOs had been low only five years earlier.