Yesterday was a solemn day for our country. As we honored the lives of those lost on 9/11, we had to once again relive those horrifying images from 10 years ago. There were some positives we were able to take from that day, however. We remembered the brave work of the First Responders at Ground Zero, how we united as a country, and the re-ignition of philanthropic giving. That last point was something that was covered in the most recent issue of The NonProfit Times.
Nearly $2.6 billion was raised following the attacks, creating a turning point for philanthropy in response to large-scale disasters. Following 9/11, Americans continued to give generously when these disasters took place, whether it was the Gulf Coast hurricanes in 2005, or the Asian tsunami in 2004. As long as donors were sure their money was going to where it is supposed to be going, they seemed to have no qualms about giving large amounts of cash.
That was one of the lessons learned following 9/11. The Red Cross came under heavy criticism when it was learned that money raised from the Liberty Fund--set up to collect donations in the wake of September 11th--would also be used to prepare for other major disasters. This was eventually changed due to massive public pressure, creating a lesson that future charities heeded.
If you want to learn more about giving post-9/11, check out the full article on that subject on our website.