Scrooge Was a Man: Women More Likely to Give to Charities, Study Says

At all levels, women give a higher percentage—especially as they age.

Solina Chau, head of the massive charity founded by Asia's richest man, speaks at an event. (Photo: Getty Images)

Sep 5, 2012· 1 MIN READ

Dudes, bad news. Not only are women better at living longer and getting college degrees (yup, it’s true), a new study shows they’re also more likely to give to charities, no matter their income bracket.

According to the Women Give 2012 report, compiled by the Women’s Philanthropy Institute at the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, women are more altruistic than their cheap, heartless male counterparts.

This piece of the executive summary builds the case from its last study: “The new study builds on the results of Women Give 2010, which…showed that single women are more likely to give to charity, and give at a higher level, than single men, across all income levels.”

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Now the hammer falls with the 2012 revelation that older women, and those with money, are particularly better than men at giving. The Baby Boomer generation women give a hefty 89 percent more than their male counterparts, the report found.

The hits keep on coming with comments from the institute’s director, who pointed out that this means that women earn less, live longer on that amount, and give more of it percentage-wise to charitable causes than the money-grubbing schlubs on the other side of the gender divide. She didn’t say that last part in those precise words, but you can read between the lines.

A point of detail is that the study only looks at single heads of households to keep the gender comparisons more clear.

At least men are more knowledgeable about the money they’re not giving away? Meh. Seems thin.

The report dropped just before Forbes released its recent feature on the Most Powerful Women Philanthropists of the year, which boosts the profile of female-driven charity with names like Angelina Jolie, Laurene Powell Jobs (Steve’s widow), and that matronly stateswoman of helping the underserved, Shakira.

Expected heavy-hitters such as Melinda Gates are on the list, but the roundup also mentions some lesser known philanthropists, such as Shari Arison, who started a Web site ( to link people with volunteer opportunities, and Solina Chau, who heads the huge charity funded by the richest man in Asia.

Charitable giving can take a hit in tough economic times, but according to the Kansas City Star, real rays of light are out there—including the revelation that the most charitable portion of Kansas City is a low-income zone dubbed the “murder factory.”

As the story points out, a recent nationwide study of charitable donations showed that the average for giving (high-income earners gave the least, percentage-wise) was about 7 percent in the city—the “murder factory” area gave at over 12 percent of discretionary income.

No doubt, women led that charge, but, guys, there is hope. Check out this list of Real-Life Bruce Waynes and hold your head high about the number of men out there doing their part.

What will it take to get men to give more? Leave some plans for action in COMMENTS.