With the holidays in full swing, there is no better time than now to talk about charity. In recent studies released by SmartAsset.com and WalletHub.com, Orem and Provo’s cities were recognized, among others, as the most charitable cities in the most charitable state in the country. This recognition emphasizes Utahns’ commitment to giving.
“Utah County has always had a reputation for being a caring community, and it is nice to see the data backing that reputation,” said Bill Hulterstrom, president and CEO of United Way of Utah County, which is a charitable icon in the state.
In interviews around campus this past week, students spoke up about the causes which they are involved in charitably. From hospital volunteer programs to elementary education internships, even soup kitchens, gift-wrapping events and small business programs, UVU students are involved in giving.
“I think it is wonderful to know that we are a part of a larger community that cares about one another and giving back,” said Sam Benson, a UVU junior.
SmartAsset and WalletHub construct surveys that consider a variety of factors in relation to charity. Not only did the Provo-Orem area, along with the whole of the state, come out on top for the second year in a row for charity in general, but it was also recognized for volunteerism and money-giving metrics.
According to SmartAsset’s findings, residents of the Provo-Orem area donate on average around 6.68% of their income to others. Additionally, the volunteer rate in Utah is at 51%, another notable metric that aided in Utah’s ranking.
Even under the extensive pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic, Utah was able to raise its charitable contributions by 16%. So while traditional means of volunteering have been limited, financial contributions, grants and giving have generally been on a high in 2020 for the state of Utah.
Much of these contributions are attributed to the high population of members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and the tithe percentage of their salaries each year. Regardless, an attitude of giving is certainly recognizable throughout the state and according to studies, massively abundant here in Utah County.
Senior Staff Writer and Assitant Sports Editor
English major with an emphasis in Creative Writing- double minor in Environmental Studies and Communication.