September 1, 2010; Source: The Day.com | A report released this week shows that Connecticut foundations awarded 22 percent more in grants in 2008 than in 2006, despite a 1 percent drop in asset value due to the economic collapse that year. However, the head of the Connecticut Council on Philanthropy doesn’t expect that this trend continued in 2009.
Instead, Nancy Roberts, president of the Connecticut Council for Philanthropy, said giving in 2008 reflected the fact that foundations were fulfilling grantmaking plans based on asset values before the full effects of the recession were felt. “The start of the economic downturn in late 2008 had a significant impact on foundation activity that will be felt for years to come,” Roberts added. Giving figures lag two years, so it won’t be until sometime next year before analysts will have a chance to determine amounts foundations awarded in 2009.
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Still Roberts expects the numbers will show foundations gave less that year. “Obviously, the market has gone up and down since 2008,” Roberts said. “I expect everyone is still below where they were at the end of 2007, and that includes the endowments of nonprofits, foundations or universities. Therefore, as we go forward—and we won’t know this until we do the numbers—grant making will be going down for 2009, and perhaps beyond.”—Bruce Trachtenberg