Washington, D.C. — Foundation investments in innovative efforts like the Casper Early Childhood Learning Center have a deeper and farther-reaching economic impact than previously understood. According to a first-of-its-kind independent analysis released Friday by The Philanthropic Collaborative, foundation grant-making in the U.S. supports millions of jobs, as well as billions of dollars in wages, GDP and tax revenues that extend for generations.
The ECLC serves as a preschool and childcare facility for more than 50 children of students and employees of Casper College. The children range in age from birth to 5 years old. The center also serves as a learning center for more than 300 college students and volunteers who work with children or who are training in education-related fields.
For two decades, the ECLC was essentially working out of an old dormitory space not designed for early learning and childcare. To build a new facility, the ECLC received support from numerous foundations, including grants from the Daniels Fund, Zimmerman Family Foundation, Myra Fox Skelton Foundation, Goodstein Foundation, Harry T. Thorson Foundation and McMurry Foundation.
When the short-term and long-term social and economic benefits and the multiplier effects are calculated based on the $1.17 million in foundation support, including a $100,000 grant from the Daniels Fund for the new facility, The Philanthropic Collaborative study reveals more than $9 million in goods and services transactions, $6.45 million in additional GDP, $4.8 million in wages and benefits, and nearly $200,000 in tax revenue.
“Affordable childcare where your kids are learning and happy is a priceless commodity that should never be taken for granted,” said Meredith Vincent, a parent who uses the ECLC.
“The staff that runs and participates in the college program should be considered invaluable to not only the college and parents, but also the community as a whole.”
The report, “Economic Impacts of 2010 Foundation Grantmaking on the U.S. Economy,”
comes at a critical time. Congress and the White House are debating the role of the nonprofit sector and considering caps or limits on incentives that encourage charitable giving. The report examines the present and future impact on the U.S. economy of foundation grants that support diverse areas such as health care, scientific research, educational opportunities, safer neighborhoods and more.
Foundations support almost nine million jobs in America, and the nonprofit community as a whole employs more than 13.5 million people, or approximately 10 percent of the workforce. Nonprofits pay nearly $670 billion annually in wages and benefits, and employ more people than the finance, insurance and real estate sectors combined.
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