More than three out of four U.S. adults would prefer to receive a meaningful gift this holiday season that would help someone else instead of a traditional gift like clothing or electronics, according to the results of a new survey on charitable giving.
The study by Harris Interactive on behalf of Christian relief and development organization World Vision also concluded that many U.S. adults (49 percent) would be more likely to give a "charitable gift" as a holiday present this year.
"[E]ven in these difficult times, an overwhelming majority of Americans still want to help others in need and [76 percent] would rather receive a gift that would help another instead of receiving a traditional gift for themselves," commented Justin Greeves, senior vice president of public affairs and policy research at Harris Interactive.
"That finding reveals our charitable culture at work," he added.
The new study is second commissioned by World Vision to report on how charitable giving would be affected by the recession. Last year, World Vision reported that seven out of ten (71 percent) U.S. adults planned to cut back on holiday gift spending. That same year, giving overall dropped 5.7 percent, according to Giving USA.
"The declines we see from 2008 reflect the realities of the challenging non-profit climate, with less charitable giving at a time when the need has increased for so many," commented Greeves.
This year, around six out of ten adults (57 percent) said they will spend less money on holiday presents.
Almost three out of four (74 percent), meanwhile, plan to increase their charitable giving once the economy improves.
The latest poll was conducted by telephone by Harris Interactive among 1,001 U.S. adults from Oct. 29 to Nov. 1.
World Vision, which commissioned the poll, is an organization dedicated to helping children and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty.