Miami Sneaks in on List of 25 Most Charitable Cities, But We Hate Volunteering

The Daily Beast was feeling charitable today and decided to give us this little bit of blog fodder: Miami made the list of America's 25 most charitable cities. We came in at 23 overall on the strength of a relatively high percentage of average earnings donated. The problem is though that apparently Miamians can't be bothered to donate their time. A shockingly low percentage of our population volunteers, lower than any other metro area listed.

The Beast's list used three main criteria: percentage of earnings donated (from National Center for Charitable Statistics), amount that individual foundations received (from the Foundation Center), and volunteers per capita (from Here's the statistics that put Miami at number 23:

Percentage of earnings donated: 3.4 percent
Average household income: $129,788
Giving per foundation: $422,484
Annual volunteers: 671,100
Population that volunteers: 12.1 percent
The percentage of earning donated and giving per foundation actually came out on the higher end of the list, it's the low volunteer rate that put us back at 23. Take Tampa/St. Pete for example. They were the only other Florida area to make the list, and came in lower than us at 25, but had a volunteer rate of 21.7 percent.

Even recession-hit cities like Detroit and Cleveland had much higher rates of volunteerism (21.2 and 22 percent respectively). Most cities on the list at least break the 20 percent mark. Only New York City comes close to hanging with Miami at the bottom with a volunteer rate of 12.6.

Note to residents of both cities: attending charity galas doesn't count as volunteer work. Get out there and get your hands dirty in the name of a good cause.

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Kyle Munzenrieder